Tips for designing an SEO-friendly website that Google will want to index.
It can sometimes be difficult to keep track of all the different elements that Google considers important when it comes to SEO but starting with a strong website definitely helps.
Your website is your online image and is one of the first places that people will interact with your brand. This means that you need to cater to a lot of different visitor preferences, while still encouraging conversions.
Responsive website design is no longer optional if you want to provide users with the best possible experience across any device, something that Google considers very important to your SEO success.
The SEO Benefits of a Responsive Website
Here are just a few of the reasons why responsive web design is a must for all website owners if they want to rank well in Google’s search results.
- Increased Mobile Traffic. Mobile browsing is on the rise, in fact, over 50% of all online users browse via a mobile device. This means that if your website doesn’t display correctly on a mobile device, you’re going to be losing out on a lot of potential customers and Google will certainly notice your high bounce rate and low time on site too.
- Faster Page Load Times. Speed is another very important ranking factor because it plays such an important role in your user experience. Making sure that your website loads quickly will go a long way in boosting your SEO efforts. A responsive website works to condense your pages, which is how it’s able to speed up your page load times.
- Decreased Bounce Rates. Providing visitors with a more optimized experience will automatically decrease your bounce rates because they won’t feel the need to leave your site the minute they open it, giving you even more chances to encourage them to convert.
- Duplicate Content is Eliminated. Since many website owners were creating two separate sites for mobile and desktop users, Google was penalizing them for duplicate content. When you have a responsive website, you only need one version of your site and duplicate content is no longer an issue.
- Increased Conversions. When you make it easy for website visitors to find what they’re looking for and convert, there’s no reason why your conversation rates shouldn’t increase too – and a responsive website can make this possible.
Web Design Tips to Enhance Your User Experience
As you can tell, your website’s design and how it affects your user experience is what’s going to impact your SEO efforts. Over and above creating a responsive website, here are a few additional tips that will take your website from good to great.
- Make Your Typography Big & Unique. Believe it or not, many brands use a specific font or typography to stand out from their competitors. Use typography to provide your website visitors with a unique experience and text that is easy to read on any device. Choose a font that fits in with your brand’s image so that visitors can immediately make the link.
- Focus on Your Navigation. How easy is it for visitors to move around your site? The more complicated your menus are, the less patience your visitors will have. While having many menu options makes it easier for visitors to find exactly what they’re looking for, it can make your menus appear cluttered but hamburger menus are changing all this. Save screen space by taking advantage of a hidden menu that still includes all of your landing pages.
- Make Your Calls to Action Clear. A clear call to action enhances your user experience because it tells a visitor exactly what next step to take, with the added bonus of it increasing your conversion rates.
- Opt for a Semi-Flat Design. Basically, a flat design doesn’t give the perception of three dimensions, making your layout easier for visitors to comprehend. This is not to say that you can’t still include shadows but they should preferably be subtle.
- Build More Trust. The more visitors trust your brand, the more willing they will be to spend more time on your site and convert. With the recent issues with personal data breaches, building trust has become more important than ever. There are a number of different things that you can do to make your site appear more trustworthy such as choosing high-quality imagery, avoiding pre-made website templates, displaying logos of well-known clients and showcasing your following on social media.
- Use Larger Product Images. If you look at a few of the top e-commerce stores, you will notice that their product images are a lot bigger than they used to be. This is because larger images allow brands to highlight the features of their products in a more efficient way. When visitors feel surer about what they’re purchasing, there’s a much higher chance of them spending more time on your site and converting too.
At the end of the day, whatever you can do to provide your website visitors with a more favorable experience is what’s going to get you noticed by Google.