6 Simple Design Changes You Can Implement to Make Your Site More SEO Friendly

6 Design Changes You Can Make on Your Site to Make it SEO FriendlyMost people think that the process of improving a site in order to make it more SEO friendly requires big changes and major overhauls of the structure and content, but the truth is that there are simple design changes you can implement to make your site more SEO Friendly, and none of them will require additional purchases or weeks’ worth of coding to do. Such as:

1. Less is More

Less text is better. Less images is better. Less messages is better.

Remember that the brain is capable of processing only one piece of information at a time. The more you crowd your site with information and images, the greater the chances of the visitor turning away. Make it clean and make it direct.

Say what you want to say in one sentence and yes, you have to say only one thing.

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2. Use Standards

Use design “habits” that web users are already used to.

  • Menu on top.
  • Menu should be no more than 7.
  • When something is clickable, make it obvious that it is clickable.
  • Use one dominant and nice image.
  • Speed over design.
  • Their natural eye movement is left to right, top to bottom.
  • The first spot their eyes land on is a about an inch below the top of your screen.
  • Whey they already click on a link, change the color of the text.
  • Use symbols and languages that are most familiar to most number of people. For example, a clock with moving hands is internationally known to indicate that the system is busy, red exclamation point is known to indicate alert or new notification, among others.

3. Prioritize the Use of Text Over Images or Flash Controls

It’s true that images and buttons made via Flash look cool and can make your site look extremely unique, but it has a number of downsides as far as SEO is concerned. For starters, even with the rise of Image Search, people still prefer to use normal text searches when looking for pages (they only use Image Search when looking for images or pictures) not using text for clickable sections of your site is a disadvantage.

Next, text will always load faster than images or flash applets, which means your site is more responsive to users and search spiders, and it’s pretty much common knowledge these days that search engines also factor in loading times when ranking your site. There’s also that thing about users being impatient and preferring sites that load instantly.

4. Use CSS to Manipulate Text

Don’t think that avoiding use of images and flash controls for clickable links is going to prevent you from making your site look good. With CSS, you can manipulate text to the point that you can make it look like an image. This will allow you to enjoy the best of both worlds – as you get the indexing advantages of pure text while also enjoying the aesthetics provided by images.

5. Build a Mobile Version of Your Site

One of the problems encountered by webmasters is that they can’t find the sweet spot between catering to desktop users – have ample screen real estate and bandwidth – and mobile users who have to contend with small screens and limited bandwidth. The best solution is to create a mobile version of your site and let mobile users use that instead of trying to spread your site too thin. Creating a mobile site is not as hard as creating a new desktop site from scratch because mobile sites by default have limited design elements and structure.

6. Maximize the Amount of Text Above the Fold

In the effort of some designers to take on a more visual approach, they tend to only include a few sentences above the cut and place everything below the fold, so that the actual meat and bones of the site are usually only accessible by clicking further or scrolling down. Search engines actually take these things into account, and placing the bulk of your text content outside of the prime real estate of your page may result in a lower ranking.

Basically, the main takeaway from this is that it’s always a good idea to make your site look presentable and beautiful, but if your goal is to get traffic through search engines, you should keep in mind that these search engines only understand text and don’t really care about the aesthetics.

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