Building a website is the first and foremost step in establishing a business online. A good looking responsive website is a must-have for business that will make your business visible in this competitive internet market.
It is therefore essential to create an attractive, user-friendly, responsive, and optimized website for your business, and that’s what we called an SEO-friendly web design. User experience is the most important thing in a website design these days.
So, what is a SEO-friendly website? And why is it important?
A SEO-friendly website refers to the website that is simple, easy to navigate, crawlable, indexable, and hence, completely user and search engine-friendly.
You might ask me why a web designer should bother about these things, which appear to be concerns of an SEO guy. However, having a web designer with a knowledge of SEO is a great asset for the organization. With the massive competition these days in the design market, it is essential to place yourself a step forward and be ready for any challenge.
Importance of SEO Friendly Design
Designing SEO-friendly websites is the latest trend in the web industry, and it has been creating a buzz in these recent years. Because of such a high demand in this competitive market, you can imagine how important and beneficial it is to have a SEO-friendly website for your awesome business.
So, here I present the lists of benefits and importance of having a SEO-friendly web design for your business. SEO friendly websites:
- Are ideal for both users and search engines because they have a perfect crawlable site structure for search engines and are attractive & easy to navigate for users.
- Can ensure that your business is reaching to the right audience through unique keyword and audience research & analysis.
- Helps create a credible brand for your business as your create your website taking care of your audience and their needs.
- Insists on creating a responsive and user-friendly website which is again a good sign of business growth.
- Can help increase the traffic of a website as it focuses on keyword targeted meta setup and contents.
- Helps minimize any kind of Google penalty because it is more concerned about webmaster guidelines and avoids any kind of black hat SEO practices like keyword stuffing, content duplication, and link farming.
- Help you compete with the rival competitors by its competitor research and analysis.
- Provides improved sales and business performance. Thus, with little investment, you are able to get maximum benefits and profits, resulting in a better ROI for your business.
- Can boost your sales and increase your profits, bring new customers to your business and retain the existing ones. They can also provide you with multiple ways of promoting your products online so that you can reach your targeted audience and potential customers in a more effective manner. With all these benefits, an SEO friendly site helps help you grow and expand your business.
Now that you have realized how important it is for a web designer to consider optimization, I would like to present you the practical approach of a SEO-friendly web design and the exact recommendations; I use to achieve decent web traffic.
Here, I would like to note a few recommendations and approaches that I have been using for my clients.
Focus On Business Product/Service & Client While Designing
In designing website, we avoid applying the same design for all the websites. We design with respect to the business and the services.
As soon as the project has been assigned, we should first make a note about the business, its services, plant location, their customers, and their business objectives. This process is important to know your client’s business and their target audience and to understand the business before creating design
Personalizing web design to your client:
- Helps you understand your audience.
- Helps in creating website layout and architecture.
- Helps in creating user-friendly web design.
- Helps in creating effective business marketing strategies.
Keep several other principles in mind.
Create A Mobile Friendly Web Design
According to Techcrunch, the combined traffic from mobile and tablet devices tipped the balance at 51.2 percent, vs. 48.7 percent for desktop access, marking the first time this has happened since StatCounter began tracking stats for internet usage.
This percentage is not going to decline any time now.
So, it is important for a developer to design a mobile friendly responsive website which would be portable for all the devices.
More people prefer shopping online or calling businesses through their mobile phone compared to desktop phones. If you don’t have a responsive website for your business, you are certainly going to lose half of your customers.
1. Include User-Friendly Navigation
Imagine walking into a supermarket where none of the aisles were labeled and there was no logic to where items were placed. Or imagine a bookstore without sections, or a library without an index. Wouldn’t that be frustrating?
That’s exactly how shoppers feel when they visit an ecommerce store with poor navigation. Online shopping is supposed to be convenient and should save time. If, instead, they’re forced to waste even a few precious minutes figuring out how to navigate your store you’re going to lose them.
Here are some tips to improve your website’s navigation:
- Use Search Autosuggest
- Use filters
- Use drop-downs
- Make categories searchable
- Duplicate your sub-categories
- Use dynamic categories
Example of best user-friendly navigation
2. Include Keyword Research & Analysis
Keyword research is a process of collecting keywords (based on average monthly search and competition) relevant to our business in order to target it in our website.
So how would you do it?
Let’s take an example of a client who wants to sell smart watch in Canada.
To find the right keyword, we can execute the following steps:
Dig into the business services and brainstorm few keyword ideas. From this I was able to get few keyword ideas like Smartwatch Canada, best smartwatch, Latest smartwatch, Apple smartwatch, Motorola smart wear, etc.
Wow, that’s great. We just brainstormed 5 keywords in less than a minute. Now, we are good to go for the next step.
Once we have some handful of related keywords, We may use various tools for the further process of keyword research. Some of the Keyword tools I suggest are :
- Google Suggestions
- Google Keyword Planner
- Keyword shitter
- Keywords everywhere
3. Design A Meta Setup
Meta setup is a process of setting html meta tags like title, meta description, and heading.
With a list of our researched keywords, we now target every page of our website with few relevant keywords which we want to rank for. Our keywords must add value to the content. We should never do keyword stuffing.
Depending on keywords, we now create title, meta description, and headings of the webpage.
You should use heading tags wisely. H1 tag should only be used once in a web page.
4. Use Alt Text for Images
Alternative Text or Alt text should be used when using any images in a webpage.
Basically, it is recommended to use secondary keywords for this purpose.
5. Optimized URL Structure:
URL stands for uniform resource locator and it is literally the address of a website. URL is one of the considering factor of Google ranking Algorithm. So it is the responsibility of a web designer to use an optimized URL for the website.
URL optimization refers to short and descriptive URL.
Since it is an important factor in ranking, let’s focus on some URL best practices. The URL for our webpage:
- Should contain our keyword phrase
- Should be no longer than 100 characters.
- Should be static instead of dynamic.
Good example:- www.amazon.com/clothing/men t-shirts
Bad example:- www.amazon.com/125645564
6. Setup Google Analytics & Webmaster Tools
Google analytics is one of the most important tools for measuring the online activities for your business. It helps you track the visitors, their behavior, the time they spent, the page they visit, and all sort of activities they do while on our website.
It is useful in tracking online improvement and success. For example: Google analytics lets me track total users and their country as well as the total conversion of this month. And it’s all possible within few clicks. Isn’t it amazing?
Getting started with Google Analytics is easy, for a really easy to follow guide read Superb Digital’s Guide to Google Analytics.
7. Integrate Social Media In The Website
Social media has grown to be an important tool for digital marketing. Marketers these days use social media websites for promoting and branding their business in many ways.
Social media, if done correctly can even be used as a better customer relation management tool. It is, therefore, an important job of a web designer to integrate social media into a website. The question is how and where to integrate it?
It is recommended to Integrate the social media channels at the header part of your website and you may like to integrate the social channel in your Post which enables user to share it via Social Media.
In this article, I have presented the basic concepts to design a SEO-friendly web design.
What do you think about these approaches? Let me know If you want to add anything to the list. Comment with your thoughts below.
Moving on, it’s time to focus on designing a responsive and eye-catchy website with full researched meta setup and fresh & unique content. Once you have accomplished website design and on-site SEO setup, I would love to talk about promoting your website to a whole next level in my next article.
If you have any queries related to SEO-Friendly Web Design, feel free to contact Nepgeeks Technology.
Bio: Prabhash Kumar Thakur is a digital marketer and a web developer from Kathmandu, Nepal. He works as a SEO Manager at Nepgeeks Technology; a web design & SEO firm based in Kathmandu, Nepal. He is passionate about Blogging & enjoys sharing knowledge & informationswith fellow writers & readers.