Search engine optimisation, also known as SEO, is the key to search traffic generation. When done correctly, it will increase conversions (leads and sales). Much of the time when people set out to improve their site’s search engine presence, they make the mistake of focusing on keywords alone.
While keywords still are important, especially in the research phase, I believe quality content should come first. Content is incredibly important; in fact, it’s imperative in obtaining high search rankings and driving traffic to your website.
But what many people don’t know is that web design is also a crucial aspect of SEO. Your website structure, also known as silo architecture, is the way you structure your pages to help search engines understand the context of your content.
Below are three things you can do to boost your search engine visibility through web design.
Number of Pages and Subpages
SEO has evolved over the years. Now, instead of search engines looking at metrics, such as keyword density, they are looking for quality content that answers the users’ search query.
Previously when search engines used keyword density as a primary ranking metric, the content often didn’t read well and users were disappointed in the results, resulting in a bounce. Search engine algorithms changed over time and now search engines return more quality results.
One of the marks of a quality website is the depth of the site. In other words, do you just have one page that acts as your online business presence or does your website offer valuable content on numerous topics within your niche?
Having multiple pages on your website enables your site to be found for numerous search queries and yield more long tail search traffic. Jayson DeMers from Search Engine Watch mentioned the following “with longtail keywords, the results are highly relevant. This translates to a higher conversion rate.”
Media needs to be a part of your web development strategy if you’re hoping to increase your search engine ranking. Static pages, or pages with only text, are great for providing information to your viewers but videos and images will encourage them to stay longer.
Consider adding photos, informational videos, online tutorials, and other media types to encourage your web visitors to keep engaged. This will result in more sales and a lower bounce rate.
To improve your visibility in search results, I highly recommend you use schema.org markup for videos. This will add a video snippet alongside of your search results and increase click through rates (CTR).
Of course, you will also want to add social media to the list, even if it’s just a link to your company’s Facebook page or live Twitter stream. Include a “follow us” button and encourage your visitors to engage with you on social media. I am a huge advocate of Google+ and there are numerous SEO reasons to use Google+.
Focused and Streamlined Content
Search engines are only going to know what’s on your page if you tell them. Pages that include a lot of information about a wide range of topics is not helpful if you’re trying to target a specific keyword ranking.
Web design companies will often work with their clients to create a content marketing plan to not only improve their search traffic but to increase it. When someone searches for information, for instance “how to get more website traffic”, search engine spiders will crawl the web for pages that have to do with online marketing.
If you happen to provide website design as part of a content marketing strategy, you should have an article on your blog or additional page to answer these types of questions. So come up with a list of queries you believe your customers are searching for; even brainstorm with others and put together a content marketing strategy to target these key phrases.
Creating a well-designed, optimised website isn’t as difficult as it might seem. Professional help is always good to have but if you are just starting out and want to employ some basic techniques to help you, you can easily implement any of the above to improve your site’s search visibility.
Make sure you have access to Google Analytics or something similar. Studies have shown that data is extremely helpful in understanding how your site is performing and how it can improve. Remember, don’t forget the last part, monitoring and measuring your success.
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