SEO-Friendly Web Design: Boost Your Site’s Visibility in Search Results

53% of all trackable website traffic comes from organic search, and it drives 6% of all online revenue, on average.

So, SEO-friendly web design is likely to boost your site’s organic search traffic. Plus, there’s a good chance for your sales or conversions to grow.

If you wish to get the most out of it, you need to design websites with USERS and SEARCH ENGINES in mind.

In this post, we will discuss seven tips that will help you in implementing SEO-friendly web design.

Getting Started

But before we dive in, test your site’s overall SEO health. Otherwise, your efforts to boost its visibility might not give expected results.

Run a quick website audit using the free Website Checker Tool and check your on-page SEO, site speed, traffic, etc.

If you find minor issues, you can fix them immediately. For the major ones, you need to go ahead and do a website redesign.

Next, you can follow these tips and enhance your site’s visibility in the search results.

1. Remove Intrusive Pop-ups and Ads

Picture this: You land on a page, and a series of pop-ups welcome you. Isn’t it annoying?

You’d click the back button and go away as soon as you experienced it. And I would do that too.

Such user behaviour can negatively impact your conversions and SEO. Google penalises pages with intrusive interstitials.

It includes popups, layovers, and advertisements that are typically not responsive, cover most of the content on the screen and are difficult to close.

So, if your site has many intrusive pop-ups and ads, remove the ones you don’t need at first.

With that, you can keep useful pop-ups like exit messages, cookie warnings, subscription requests, etc.

But, remember, less is better.

2. Use Clear CTAs (Call To Action)

Call To Action buttons direct users to perform a specific action.

For example, the ‘Try For Free’ button on RankWatch’s homepage tells users what would happen when they click on it.

But, if it read something like ‘Take The Ride’ or ‘Experience The Change,’ it would confuse the readers. Consequently, users will ignore the button and not click on it.

So, carefully look at the CTAs on your site, and ensure they make sense. If you can improve them and get more clicks, do it.

It will help reduce your site’s bounce rate and enhance its search visibility.

3. Make Navigation Easy

The website navigation makes it easy for users to find the pages they are looking for. It encourages visitors to interact with your site and stay longer.

But, if your site’s navigation is not clear and doesn’t link to the most important pages, it will not serve the purpose.

Here’s how bad navigation looks like:

It is neither clean nor user-friendly.

Now, look at the present website navigation of the same site:

They have improved it tremendously, and it is super easy to navigate their site now.

So, you must rethink how your navigation works and if it benefits your users. Change the layout, remove unimportant links, etc., as required.

You can even ask your users for their feedback and make your site’s navigation better for them.

As your site’s user experience is enhanced, more users will stay on your site. And it will help improve your site’s visibility in search results.

4. Implement Mobile-First Design

As of July 2021, 55.89% of people browse the web via mobile devices. So, it is safe to assume that most visitors to your site come from mobile devices.

Also, Google uses mobile-first indexing and ONLY looks at the mobile version of your pages while ranking them in SERPs.

So, you need to ensure that both users and search engines can access your site without hassle.

But, there’s no point in designing a site for ‘desktop’ first and then creating its mobile version.

Instead, use responsive web design and make your site ready to serve users and search engines.

If you don’t know where to begin, check the mobile-friendliness of your site using the free Mobile-Friendly Test Tool.

5. Improve Page Loading Speed

70% of customers say that page speed impacts their purchasing decisions. If you make your customers wait for a response, they will turn to your competitors.

Supporting this, in 2010, Google made page speed a ranking factor not just for search but for ads too. It recommends that a page must load within 3 seconds for the best results.

Simply put, your site must load as fast as possible. Compress images and videos, reduce JavaScript, etc., to reduce the page loading time.

You can use Google’s Page Speed Insights Tool to get a detailed analysis of your page speed.

It will list the relevant page speed problems under ‘Diagnostics’ and give your suggestions under ‘Opportunities’.

If you have lots of slow pages and need improvement, start with the most important pages first. Fast loading will enhance the search visibility of your pages.

6. Use HTTPS Security

Google considers HTTPS as a ranking factor since 2014. So, websites with an SSL certificate (https://) have an added advantage in SERPs.

Besides this, HTTPS protects the integrity and confidentiality of data between the user’s computer and the site.

The data you are sending to or receiving from the site is encrypted. So, it becomes difficult for intruders to tamper with communications between the site and the user’s browsers.

So, I would suggest that all sites have HTTPs. If you are not using HTTPS yet, it is time to get an SSL certificate.

Let’s Encrypt, a non-profit organization backed by various companies, including Google, offers free SSL certificates.

You can easily get one from them and secure your site. However, keep in mind that HTTPS applies to your entire site. It shouldn’t be like some pages have HTTP and others have HTTPS.

7. Focus On Internal Linking

Search engines are always crawling the internet to discover and index new pages.

An internal link, which points to another page on the same website, helps search bots speed up this process.

While crawling a page, the search bots follow the links. The pages existing in their database are updated while the new pages are indexed.

So, internal linking helps your pages to appear in the SERPs. Besides this, users can also discover new pages on your site with internal links.

Now, you don’t just have to use internal links. You have to use them at relevant places. Plus, you must use appropriate anchor text.

If you are not using internal links yet, start using them and boost your site’s visibility in organic search results.

Strive for SEO-Friendly Web Design

SEO and web design keep changing from time to time. You should always keep an eye on the latest SEO updates and trends. Being forewarned helps you to be forearmed.

For now, you can take help from the tips mentioned above and make your site SEO-friendly!

Do you have any other questions related to SEO-friendly web design? Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below.

 

Nathan da Silva - Profile

Posted by: Nathan da Silva

Nathan is the Founder of Silva Web Designs. He is passionate about web development, website design and basically anything digital related. His main expertise is with WordPress, Magento, Shopify as well as many other frameworks. Whether you need responsive design, SEO, speed optimisation or anything else in the world of digital then get in touch. If you would like to work with Nathan, simply drop him an email at [email protected]

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Why User Experience Is Vital for Quality SEO

There was a time when search engine optimization (SEO) was all about backlinking and keyword stuffing. Not anymore. These days, Google is increasingly focused on your site’s overall user experience (UX). Let’s take a closer look at why UX matters for SEO. 

User experience (UX) quality, which includes making your site easy to navigate and producing regular engaging content, has become one of the top factors in getting high Google rankings. Stuffing your text with keywords and building backlinks are not effective SEO strategies anymore. Whether you’ve got an eCommerce shop selling lampshades, or an online casino with games like Sizzling Hot, Google is most interested in how your visitors interact with the content. Not convinced yet? Then check out this article. We’ll go through the top reasons why user experience plays a role in search engine rankings. And we’ll also share advice on how to improve your position. Let’s get started.

Google Gets Smarter Every Day

There used to be a time when user experience for SEO was pretty irrelevant. Google was primarily interested in how connected your content was with the keyword typed into the search bar. Plus, the search engine determined your trustworthiness by the number of reputable sites linking to you. But in 2021, Google got a new tool to pick the top search results: the RankBrain algorithm. And one of the primary criteria this machine learning system detects is the user experience on a website. It measures over 150 factors of user behaviour, including session duration and pages per session. If your videos and posts do not tailor to your customers’ searches, the user experience is not good, and visitors won’t explore deeper into your website. That causes a high bounce rate, and RankBrain informs Google about it. As a result, you get a lower rank.

Improving the User Experience via Better Content

So, how to enhance the user experience? It all starts with giving your visitors comprehensive content that answers 100% to what they’re searching for. That creates a positive experience that’s good for your business. And it’s also beneficial for Google because satisfied users are likely to use Google for their new searches. Unfortunately, a big chunk of content on the web is reiterated, rehashed, stuffed with keywords, and offers very little value to the customer. These uninspired and uninformative writings do no good for Google’s reputation if the search engine ranks them high.

How to Improve Your Content

To create valuable content, you need to step into your customers’ shoes for a minute and think about what they are hoping to find when searching for a specific keyword. If, for example, they type in “dog grooming,” they don’t want to read a general article about pets with the keyword “dog grooming” stuffed in every paragraph. A comprehensive guide on the best ways to groom a specific breed of dog will be much more valuable. Or a detailed comparison of the best grooming products for dogs with lots of hair.

Making sure your information is specific and relevant is only the first step in keeping your audience’s interest. For the best user experience and the highest rankings, you need to go further. Share unique stories about your brand, provide ingenious industry-specific solutions, publish highly relevant case studies, etc. The aim is to offer people something your competitors don’t have. That’ll make them stay on your site longer, and it improves your SEO.

businessman loudspeaker

Site Navigation – Keep It Simple

Does your website have overly complex navigation? That can cause plenty of confusion for users and increase the time it takes to complete their tasks. And nobody is likely to return to a site that takes too much of their time.

So if possible, keep the number of pages low, and organise them in a user-friendly way. That means having a simple short menu, making sure your search box works, having zero error pages, and clearly divided categories. All this will also help Google understand what your site is about, which can improve your rankings.

Headings to Identify Content – Use Them

The thing is that before people read your posts, they will check the headings of the content to see if it provides an answer to what they’re searching for. So having titles using H2-H6 (H1 should be preserved for the title only) tags point the reader quickly to the information that interests them. Plus, Google crawlers interpret your content based on H2 tags.

Make the Pages Load as Fast as Possible

Regardless of how engaging your site is, the user experience with slow loading pages will always be a nightmare. More than half of consumers will leave the website immediately if it takes more than 3(!) seconds to load. So choose a fast web-host server, clean up your code, compress images, and do everything possible to make the pages load super fast.

Make Your Website Mobile-Friendly

Everybody has a smartphone these days, so mobile-friendliness is a must in providing the best user experience. Pay attention to how variables like images, text, and overall layout of your page translate to a mobile screen. Keeping everything clear and to the point improves your site’s usability and, therefore, its Google ranking.

Test Your UX Efforts

The best way to gain user experience knowledge and understand how it affects your SEO is to A/B test every new feature. Come up with at least two variations for every UX improvement you’re planning to make. For example, if you’re going to make your text bigger, try both a medium and a large letter size. Testing allows you to see which variables drive more engagement, get more clicks, and ultimately, get you a higher Google rank.

mobile app ux apps cellphone

Conclusion

The bottom line is this: user experience will affect Google ratings. Their primary aim is to give their users relevant and easily accessible results. That goal has helped Google become the number one search engine on the internet with a consistently growing user base. And since user experience is important to Google, easy site navigation, valuable content, mobile-friendliness, and fast loading times can all help you rank higher in the search results. So start improving your UX today, and effective SEO will follow.

Have you enhanced the user experience for your eCommerce site lately? Let us know what impact it had on your Google ratings.

Posted by: Darrell Rios

Darrell Rios is a former journalist and owner of several local shops. Now in his spare time he writes about business and entrepreneurship, as he has extensive experience in organising startups and business analytics.

 

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