It’s hard for some business owners to rationale the effect of website design on SEO, yet is is an integral part of a successful online business. If you need a pointer, look at everything that comes out of Google – everything hinges on relevance and user experience. User experience starts with your websites design and that design is now impacting on search results. Consider these factors that influence Google search rankings:
- Page speed – if your website is slow to load, there is in effect a double penalty. You won’t rank as highly in search results, and should a user click on your link, there’s a good chance they’ll exit before your page has fully loaded.
- Content placement – Google is open on this policy – if your content is buried below the fold, your pages will suffer in search results. Likewise, if you have too much in the way of advertising above the fold, that could impact search results.
- Internal linking – your internal linking structure should be sensible and designed to make life easier for our users. Linking unrelated pages (especially in the content) may not be a good idea.
- Social – it’s time to think social and add social media buttons to your web pages. Getting social media ‘likes’, ‘tweets’ and ‘+1’s’ will help to improve you pages rankings in search results.
Do these issues really matter? Most definitely! You are competing against thousands of pages – can you really afford to give your competitors any edges at all? Tighten up your website design, you may see an improvement in your search rankings, and, more importantly, you may see an improvement in your bounce rates and conversions.