Everyone wants to be number one in Google. But getting there organically takes time. Many businesses overlook the importance of SEO when designing a new website and see it as an afterthought. But the sooner you start with SEO, the easier it will be in the long run.
Here’s 8 things to tick off to ensure an SEO friendly site from the get-go.
It all begins with good site structure
Before you even start to consider colours, fonts and graphics you should really think about your site structure.
As SEO guru Neil Patel puts it, “A good site structure means great user experience… and the more appealing your site is to users, the more search engines will like it too.”
Google pulls information from searches to help rank your site. And if your site is low on click throughs and dwell time, then it’s only going to hinder your search rankings.
A hierarchical site architecture is easiest for Google to crawl, but you need to make sure your category names and pages that follow are relevant.
A good site structure will:
- Provide your site with site links
- Improve the crawlability of your site
Design for mobile first
Why do we still keep designing websites for desktop computers when Google clearly favours websites offering a seamless mobile experience? There are over 5 billion mobile phone users in the world who spend more than half their time browsing the internet on mobile devices. And it’s only going to increase, so designing for mobile first – considering mobile users’ needs first is the way to go.
A fast site is a happy site
Keep your website fast. Don’t focus too much on a complex design that requires lots of images or flash content. Although it looks nice, it can slow down your site. Slow loading sites create frustration for users who will only abandon your site if it doesn’t load quickly enough.
What’s this got to do with SEO? The more people who abandon your site, the higher your bounce rate will be. Google penalise sites with high bounce rates, so keep your design simple, compress your images and add alt tags to make sure they’re SEO friendly.
Keep your code clean
Excessive code can also slow down your site and make it hard for Google’s spiders who are crawling your site for content. Simple things like adding all scripts and CSS files are external files make a difference to your SEO health.
Create unique pages with high quality content
Don’t double up on content. Google rates high quality content, and if you duplicate content across your site, you run the risk of being penalised. Spend time creating relevant content on your site for the user and the SEO benefits will naturally follow.
Enrich your meta data
This is SEO 101. Meta data is what you see on search engine results pages (SERPs) when your website appears during a search query. Include descriptions that are keyword rich and attract users to your site. The key tags to consider are:
- Title tag: specifies the title of a web page for search engines and users. It’s found in the search engine results pages as a clickable link.
- Meta description: Features below the title and provides a summary of what your page is about.
- Alternative Text (Alt) tag: Search engines can’t read images, so adding an explanation of what an image is ensures it will be indexed properly.
Be original with your visual content
Google knows if your website is the first to publish an image or video, so use your own original visual content where possible. Adding videos (in moderation) to your site also increases time spent on your site, which can only improve the SEO strength in your site design.
Start a blog
Creating a blog on your website means you’ll be publishing fresh content often, which search engines love. It also gives you a distinct SEO advantage to other sites who don’t update or add content on a regular basis. A blog will naturally attract search engine traffic and increase the size of your site over time, which can benefit your website authority and leverage the number of internal links across your site.
These are just a few SEO considerations, if you want to know more about how Cloud Cartel can create an SEO friendly website for your business, give our team a hola today.