Website Structure, Design And Trust Matter
When it comes to ranking well with Google and co. it might come as a surprise to know how much web design can impact your search performance. As SEO moves out of the black hat days, focus turns to quality content, user experience and intuitive design to compliment a solid SEO strategy.
Essentially, this means optimising your website for people first – before you start thinking about keywords and inbound links. It’s an SEO philosophy you will have to get used to as well, with Google algorithms and user expectations demanding more from websites designed for humans, not search engines.
SEO has become a people business and your long-term page ranking relies on a number of design elements as part of the package.
Trust factor isn’t actually a design element in itself, rather the impression a user gets from the overall design and functionality of your website. Everything people see when they land on your page tells them something about your business – how professional you are, whether they can trust you with their money and what makes you stand out from the thousands of other businesses like you out there.
You need a sound website structure for search engines to do their magic and index your content – but structure is vital from a design perspective too. If your website is nice and small this isn’t too difficult, but as your website grows it’s vital you keep the structure easy to navigate for search bots and real-life humans.
Make sure navigation menus are intuitive and maintain a structure where users can get to where they want in as few clicks as possible, using internal links where needed.
Always remember to maintain your site’s strong theme throughout and keep everything in it’s correct channel to flow the maximum relevance throughout your site for spiders to enjoy and learn.
Google has incorporated page speed in its search ranking since 2010, although data from multiple sources like Moz suggests the impact is debatable. Where page speed really counts is user experience, which means you don’t want to keep people waiting with a design relies too much on images or sloppy code.
Search engines can’t see how pretty your website looks – all they see is code and you can think of them like a strict teacher who doesn’t tolerate bad grammar or sloppy sentence structure. Clean code makes it easier for search engines to crawl your website and index your content accurately, which is exactly what you want.
The whole point of worrying about design from an SEO point of view is so that more people can enjoy your site, share with their friends, recommend you and come back for more – all metrics Google loves to take into consideration.
If you want everyone to be able to enjoy your website you need to make sure it works on every device and that means responsive design – so mobile, tablet and desktop users can get the most from your website.
About Move It Marketing
Move It Marketing are an SEO agency based in Manchester, whose particular focus is on technical and architectural aspects of organic search marketing. Whilst we provide a range of digital marketing services on a consultancy basis, our speciality is natural search.