Website Design Blunders that Can Mess Up Your SEO
“If you build it, they will come.”
This popular adage does not necessarily hold true for websites. With the high volume of similar websites in the Web, you need to drum up attention and interest to your website – and then they will come. Indeed, your website requirements do not just include programming and aesthetics, Search Engine Optimization or SEO is also an important consideration.
However, there are some things that can be attractive from a web design standpoint but may be harmful to your SEO efforts. Here are some of them:
– Using graphics instead of plain text where applicable. Search engines cannot read or recognize links and text in graphics. And what a search engine does not read is what will be glaringly absent from its search results pages. Always use text when creating headers, body text or links, using important keywords. Even when image alternative text is used to rank your search results, text is still the main criteria.
– Using text in Flash. First, readers rarely read the text in Flash. What text you have added in Flash will also not add to your “SEO points”. Flash can add to a page’s visual aesthetics so you may use it judiciously. However, ensure that important content is still in text form and thus, easily indexed by a search engine.
– Poorly crafted URLs and image names. When you name a page or an image, use highly descriptive words based on SEO keywords. This makes navigation easier for readers. It also adds to the things Google can see to improve your SEO ratings.
– Adding pop-ups. Search engines tend to block them or count them as spam. These also annoy readers who will ignore it, close it or program their browsers to block it.
– Poorly crafted title tags. Title tags are one of the search engines’ go-to places to search for keywords. They will also see whether the titles are relevant to the page’s content, as well to the searchers’ queries. Follow the guidelines for crafting title tags (character limits, formats, not including the company name and logo in the title tag). Include a relevant keyword couched in a well-written sentence that is unique for each page.
– Designing “heavy” and slow-loading pages. There is a tendency for designers to want animations or high-quality graphics. Yes, these may be great eye candy for the webpage but design it so that a page can load quickly. Google would like to see how long a reader stays with a certain web page. If your page take too long to load, no matter how stupendously looking your graphics are, users may not be there to see it as they can say “bye-bye” faster than a gorgeous graphic can load.
– Inconsistent link usage. www.webpagename.com and www.webpagename.com/index.htm are read by search engines as two different pages rather than the same page that they are. This can dilute SEO results based on the importance of the page. Check that the use of links is consistent throughout the webpage, as well as inbound links from other websites.
– Executing SEO separately from web design efforts. Ultimately, in the creation of websites as well as in the redesign of the websites, SEO should be an intrinsic element of web design and planning.
About Adaptivity Pro
Adaptivity Pro is your Utah SEO expert partner as well as Utah web design provider. Adaptivity Pro’s team of SEO and web design specialists can pinpoint areas that can potentially affect the page ranking and credibility of your website.