4 Things Web Designers Should Know About SEO
Updated: Feb 24
If you are thinking your UX/UI has nothing to do with SEO, you are slightly off target.
SEO and web design go together. While good web design is responsible for making a great first impression and encouraging visitors to take action, you won’t be getting the traffic to your site without SEO.
Implementing SEO into web design helps you to get discovered by the right audience. If you are designing a website, here's what you should know about SEO to make the most out of your site’s performance.
1. Google is making mobile-first indexing the default.
Google has announced its initiative in 2016 that it is working on making mobile-first indexing the default behavior. And on 5th March 2020, it has announced its decision to make mobile-first indexing the default behavior for all the sites.
But what actually is Google’s mobile-first indexing? It is a behavior where Google Search mainly uses a mobile content of a page for generating its search index and ranking.
From an SEO perspective, how your site responds to mobile devices will impact your performance on Google in several ways.
If your website is mobile-responsive, it will offer a great user experience. The content on your site will be able to adapt to multiple screens and devices.
Among all others, usability is a critical Google ranking factor. So when you design your web, you need to consistently focus your approach on designing sites that offer smooth, fast user experiences across different devices.
2. Understanding search intent is crucial to SEO success.
Using the right keywords is crucial to your SEO strategy’s success. Earlier, content marketers used to craft their content around the keywords that the audience uses to search for topics in a particular niche.
However, nowadays, search engines are shifting their focus to understanding the intent behind search queries instead of focusing on exact-match search phrases.
When it comes to user intent, there are several types. In case a user is searching for information, the query will usually be conversational. Users will also try to find out a business location if they wish to visit a physical store. Others will search for guidelines on how to do a certain task or where to buy something online.
You should be able to match the keywords with the right user intent and optimize pages. It will drive the desired traffic that will most probably convert.
Even while designing your web for SEO, you should address these stages of user intent. Using tools such as Google Search Console, you can analyze the search terms that are used to bring traffic to your site. It will help you to understand the intent of your visitors.
Design your site to be user-friendly and intuitive, provide high-quality content and stellar experiences directly in line with their intent as soon as they land on your site. You will notice a better bounce rate, and users will stay longer, resulting in higher rankings.
3. The site structure largely determines organic clicks and rankings.
On-page SEO is one of the most vital aspects of SEO for web design. To optimize your on-page SEO, you will have to optimize title tags, meta descriptions, heading tags, and page content.
The first thing a user notices in the SERPs is an HTML title tag. It is how they immediately identify whether your site matches their intent. To optimize your title tags, include keywords at the beginning of a title tag, keep your tag about 50-60 characters, add keywords naturally, and use dividers to separate locations or categories.
To ensure that users click your meta descriptions, they have to be highly informative, concise, and well-written. Add keywords where relevant, but they shouldn’t affect the readability of your meta descriptions.
When it comes to heading tags, H1 is the most crucial header on the page. Thus, make sure to optimize it for your main keywords and use it only once. Furthermore, you can use H2 and H3 tags to fragment larger chunks of text into smaller parts. It will also make your text easier to follow.
Coming to page content, you want them to be reader-friendly but do keep SEO optimization in mind. Use long-tail and conversational phrases that align with the context. You can search for their synonyms and include them as organically as possible.
4. Long-form content works better.
As per stats, contents that are over 3000 words perform the best. Since long-form content is hard to read, a web designer’s duty is to make the content easier to follow and keep the readers engaged from beginning to end.
Some tips to follow include utilizing white space to make content easily scannable, inserting interactive and visual content to engage users and break the text up, using headings, bullets, and numbers, opting for a legible font, implementing intuitive scrolling, and adding social sharing buttons.
These are the four things every web designer should know about SEO. Designing a site for good UX and UI isn’t enough.
To get the desired traffic to your site, you will have to employ effective SEO strategies. If nothing works out, it’s a good idea to hire any credible SEO agency to handle all aspects of SEO for you.
So, make sure to follow these tips to rank your site high on search engines and get more organic traffic.