Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of positioning your website to improve its online visibility. This comes with greater opportunity to attract visitors, generate leads, and eventually increase sales. To make online success happen through SEO, you should start with your website. You have to make it searchable and rank in major search engines, like Google.
How do you do that?
Simple: with SEO website design.SEO website design is the practice of building websites that are fully accessible and indexable by major search engines like Google. Due to the anatomy of these websites, they usually get more traffic than websites that ultimately ignore the preferences of search engines. Of course, you want to put your users first but to be able to rank on Google’s first page, you want to design and develop a site for both users AND search engines.
Google even released a guide on building a Google-friendly site, which just shows how important it is to follow general design, technical and quality guidelines. However, building an SEO-friendly website isn’t just following a set of rules. It’s an art that entails an in-depth look at the anatomy of a perfect SEO website, scrutinizing each aspect from head to toe.
Without further ado, here are the main features of a search engine-friendly website:
Let’s start with the name of your website. Your domain name should use text related to the category of your business or at least a variant of your target keywords. You’ll rank higher this way. However, a lot of successful businesses do not include keywords in their main domain name, and this is fine, too. You can just work on making your domain name short and sweet to allow more characters in your URL so that it can show up in the search results.
URLs are a minor search ranking factor that Google uses to determine the relevance of a particular page or website to a search query. While they do give weight to the overall domain’s authority, using keywords in your URL also serves as a search ranking factor. This is precisely why many companies think long and hard about their URLs during the website design and development process.
Here is an example of a URL for a shoe company: www.coolshoes.com. This is a great URL because it business category, which is running shoes.
After the main URL, the text that follows ‘.com/’ should either be a post name or a category name. Let’s say you have a category page for all the brands you carry in your website. In this case, your URL should be http://www.coolshoes.com/brands. Then you can create another category to showcase a collection of a certain brand. Your URL could be http://www.coolrunningshoes.com/brands/adidas.
Indexing is a process performed by search engine bots where they detect and analyze your site’s content. If your content is not indexed, your page or website will not show up in search results, no matter how informative or relevant your content is. That’s a waste of website design and development on your part.
Your website’s most important content should be in HTML format. This improves your chances of being listed on the search engine results. Crawlers or spiders usually ignore Flash files and images. Make sure search engines can also see the words and phrases shown to your site visitors by including them in the page’s HTML text. It pays to know how search engines see your website; use tools that show which elements of your content are indexable.
Additionally, if you use images or videos, it’s crucial to improve them by filling in the title tags and description tags. Search engines can’t recognize visual content yet, so they don’t take images into account unless you optimize the alt image tags. If Google can’t detect the image subject (is it a tea cup or is it a sweater), how then will it be able to detect the image when a user searches for something to wear for the winter?
If you want your page out of the internet’s hidden abyss, content writers and providers of web services have the expertise to generate relevant and value-adding content interesting for users and detectable by Google.
Just like how we take care of our bodies and feed it nutrients aside from making ourselves look good, an SEO-friendly site doesn’t just need optimized website design, it also needs keywords to grow and rank higher on the search results page. After all, the content of your page and the keywords you use are one of the most important aspects to the success of your rankings. There are various SEO nutrients you can give your website’s body by following content techniques and guidelines.
For instance, use synonyms and phrase matches of your keywords in your content. If your target keyword is “adidas running shoes,” you could add variations like:
- running shoes adidas womens
- running shoes adidas mens
- new running shoes adidas
- running shoes adidas 2020
…and the list goes on. Once you’ve come up with a good list, scatter those terms throughout your body copy along with LSI keywords, synonyms and phrase matches in your header tags and image alt tags.
Your page’s content should target search intent. Your primary keyword should appear in your text body naturally and not too often. Placing too many keywords within your content will look like spam to search engines and readers alike. Make sure you’re working with a web services provider who doesn’t engage in keyword stuffing.
Optimised Titles Tags and Meta Descriptions
Meta descriptions and title tags also play a big role on how search engines index your website. To improve your indexability, make these elements unique as the pages of your website. Title tags have to be concise and accurate, with the most important keywords close to the start of the tag. Make sure to optimise your title tags and meta description with the relevant keywords. These should assist the spiders in determining what the page is about.
Features of a good title tag:
- Displays your subject
- Includes your keyword
- Mentions your brand name
- Between 50-59 characters in length
Each meta description should be unique and focus on getting users to click on your link. The descriptions should be between 150-160 characters. While they’re not definite search ranking factors, they’re important for your click-through-rate and getting users to visit your website.
These are the basic elements of a website design that attract search engines. Talk to us and we’ll help you with your web design and SEO needs.