There are so many factors that can affect your website’s ability to rank well on search engines and web design is one of them. This is because your web design impacts user experience and search engines like Google prefer leading people to user-friendly websites that provide a great experience.
Here, we will be exploring 5 ways your web design can affect your SEO and what you can do to make it better. Read on to find out more.
Your site’s navigation should provide a positive user experience
Search engines prioritize websites that offer a positive user experience. One of the most effective ways to ensure this is by creating effective and clean navigation for your website.
If people can’t find what they want on your site, they won’t stick around, and this will signal to search engines that your site provides a poor UX. This will then have a negative impact on your rankings.
Here are some ways you can ensure people are able to navigate from A to B very easily on your site:
- Make sure your menu is simple and self-explanatory
- Use descriptive page names and headlines that stand out
- Use clear CTAs that drive action
For inspiration, take a look at the homepage of AKD Law. The law firm specializes in a number of different areas, so they make it incredibly easy for website visitors to navigate to the most appropriate web page using simple terms and helpful graphics. Their main site menu is also incredibly simple — whether you’re looking for more information about the firm, testimonials from past clients, or a contact page, there’s no question about where you need to click.
A lot of companies make the mistake of overcomplicating their site menus — they might give their blog a quirky name, or hide their case studies in the footer. Take a leaf out of AKD Law’s book and keep things simple to improve your customer experience as well as your SEO.
You should use visuals to increase users’ dwell time
You want to encourage people to spend as much time as possible on your website. This means you need to make your site as engaging as possible. Visuals can be incredibly effective for this, as they’ll help to catch and retain users’ attention.
You could include photos of your products or services to give people a better understanding of your offerings or use images that feature people like your customers to increase trust in your brand. American International University does a great job of this featured above.
Beyond using photos, you also want to invest in other visual types like infographics and illustrations that can help you convert more visitors. Infographics are used by many businesses as they do a great job of breaking up complex topics into a simple format and are fantastic for showcasing facts, statistics, and other relevant data.
Your web design needs to work well on all devices
You need to ensure that your site will look great on any device. People visit websites using smartphones, tablets, or personal computers and, regardless of the device used, you want your customers to have a great browsing experience. If you can’t guarantee this, search engines will be hesitant to rank your site well.
To provide a positive experience for your website visitors, you want to invest in a responsive web design. This should adjust automatically to fit the device that someone is using to browse your website.
When creating a responsive site, you should make sure to optimize your images so they display perfectly on both mobile and desktop devices. You can also opt for larger font sizes so it’s as easy as possible for mobile users to read your sales copy and informative content.
You should incorporate reviews into the design of your web pages
Reviews prove to both search engines and target customers that you can be trusted. This means they can help to boost your search engine rankings, as well as help you to make more sales. Encouraging your customers to leave reviews can also help to boost your position on the search engine results pages because they will often contain a lot of keywords that are relevant to your business, products, or services.
Customer reviews can also show up in a rich snippet on the search engine results pages, which might lead to more people clicking through to your website and potentially making a purchase with you.
Having your reviews appear as a rich result on search engines will help you to earn the trust of prospective customers straight away, as they’ll be more likely to trust real reviews left by other users. This in turn increases your click-through rate (CTR) which can lead to higher rankings on search engines, as well as more conversions.
You should ensure your web pages load quickly
People also expect websites to load quickly. If yours doesn’t, this will increase your bounce rate, and search engines will take this as a sign that your site isn’t worth ranking highly. Google considers page load speed when ranking sites and won’t direct users to pages that take too much time to display properly.
One of the ways to improve your page load time is by avoiding complex designs and elements that can slow down your site. When it comes to website design, simplicity is key so you want to remove unnecessary elements that do not serve any real purpose.
Another thing to keep in mind is the size of the images used on your website. While images are good for improving your SEO, having too many can slow down your loading speed. A way to combat this is by compressing your image files before uploading them to your website. This allows you to upload more manageable image files without compromising their quality.
There are many misconceptions about the factors that affect SEO and the ones that don’t. But one thing that rings true for many businesses is the fact that optimizing your website design holds a lot of benefits for your SEO.
It is therefore very important that your web design has clean navigation, high-quality visuals, positive reviews, and a fast loading speed to improve your chances of improving your search engine rankings.