At Performance Driven Marketing, some of our staff is devoted to optimizing our clients’ SEO, and others manage all the design elements of client websites. With such a division, it may seem that we treat the two as separate entities, but this could not be further from the truth. We understand that to create an SEO-friendly website, SEO-friendly considerations must go into that website’s design. For this reason, our two teams managing design and SEO optimization collaborate on every website they work on to create something that succeeds in both areas.
When designing a website, you need to consider both the consumer and the search engines: you want your website to be intuitive and appealing to those who visit the site, but you also want it to appeal to search engines so that those visitors can find your site in the first place. Search data indicates that dramatically few people go to the second Google page for information—less than 5% dramatically fewer. That is why effective SEO-friendly website design is critical.
How Does Google Find a Website?
When a website is SEO-friendly, search engines can crawl each page effectively, interpret the content correctly, and index that information properly in their database. Once indexed, the Google algorithm can then pull the most relevant and helpful web pages to the top of a user’s search results based on the search terms used.
Creating Your Own SEO-Friendly Website
SEO-friendly website design incorporates both on- and off-page optimization to drive traffic to the site. Off-page optimization is highly beneficial and includes strategies to prompt other websites to reference your site, driving up indirect traffic. Today we are focusing on on-page optimization strategies, the stuff on your page that you control, things like keyword research, internal link structures, and creating quality content.
If you are looking to contract out your website design, give us a call at Performance Driven Marketing. We specialize in creating SEO-friendly websites and optimizing the marketing strategies of our clients.
Make It Mobile-Friendly
Over half of all search engine traffic comes from mobile devices. If you want your website to be a viable contender for high listings, make your site mobile-friendly. The mobile version of your site should be easy to navigate, with no overlapping images or crowding fonts. Pay special attention to your drop-down menus. Make sure they can still be accessed on smaller screens.
Don’t Bog Down Your Site
Website speed is dependent on file sizes, number of plugins, and the coding and scripts. As you design your site, keep add-ons at a reasonable volume. People grow frustrated with sites that do not load immediately, but even worse, if your site takes too long to load, Google will not list it high enough for people to find it.
Keep Your Site Readable
The text of a SEO-friendly website must be of sizes and fonts that are easy to read for a wide range of site visitors while maintaining visual consistency and appeal. Any kind of script writing (cursive or calligraphy) should be used as sparing accents.
They do say a picture is worth a thousand words, and it is true that many searchers online are chiefly interested in images. Allow those images to drive traffic to your site. While your viewers may not see the file names of pictures you upload to your site, Google certainly will. Use keywords to name the images on your website, and make the names short.
It is also important not to neglect the alt tags for your images. Alt tags inform the Google algorithm of your images’ subject matter. Tags should be complete sentences (with a capital letter at the beginning and a period at the end) that include your keyword and describe what’s happening in the image.
Smooth Sailing: Website Navigation
Effective website navigation will keep things clean and streamlined while also creating internal links. Have your pictures link to product pages, and use subcategories within larger topic tabs. The human brain craves organization, so we recommend utilizing a content hierarchy, pairing things in intuitive ways so your viewers can easily find what they are looking for.
Metatags (or metadata) includes things like your title tags and meta description. Astute and even glancing Google searchers will read the meta description before clicking on a website’s link to see if that site will be a useful resource. Your description should be brief but informative and incorporate your keyword. SEO-friendly websites will allow no more than 60 characters for title tags and 160 characters for meta descriptions.