SEO Web Design

What is SEO Web Design?

When people ask about SEO friendly web design, they are usually referring to two different things: website structure and search engine optimization.

The first step in creating a successful website is understanding what it needs to do so that visitors will come back again and again. This includes having clear navigation, easy access to information, and a pleasant user experience.

Once this has been accomplished, you need to make sure the site is optimized for both users and search engines like Google or Bing. When someone is searching for something related to your business, you want them to find you.

So in summary, here’s what we mean when we are discussing SEO Web Design:

Website Structure - The way your pages look and function together as one cohesive whole.

Search Engine Optimization - Making sure your site appears high up in local search rankings when potential customers search keywords or phrases related to your business.

What is the SEO Web Design Process?

There are many ways to approach designing a new website. We recommend starting with an idea of how you would like your website to appear before beginning any work on the actual code.

We use tools such as Photoshop, Illustrator, wire frames, etc., to create mockups of your ideas. These designs are usually simple to understand but also convey the message and look you wish to send out through your website.

Once the website design has been completed, it’s time to code! We only use WordPress for our clients so everything from here on will be specific to using WordPress.

There are many steps involved in the actual design of a SEO friendly site (any website really), such as

  • Create the design or choose the template/theme you will begin with.
  • Choose colors & fonts to use throughout the site.
  • Select images, preferably custom, non-used images.
  • Determine plugins required for additional functionality.
  • Build pages and ensure they are responsive across devices.
  • Ensure all pages are set up with proper optimization techniques.
  • Test page load times.
  • Check for broken links, outbound links, and internal linking structure.
  • Finalize content and ensure that it is search engine friendly and high quality for human users.
  • Install Google Analytics or other SEO tracking software.
  • Go Live!

What is the “SEO” in SEO Web Design?

On-Page Optimization

On-page optimization includes local SEO strategies that help increase traffic by making sure your site shows up at the top of local searches. For example, if you own a restaurant, include location tags within your meta description and title tag. You can also optimize your menu items and photos to show up more often in local searches.

Each page of the website needs to be optimized for search engines and user experience. Some things we consider are:

  • Target keywords and phrases
    • In order to choose the right keywords or phrases we must conduct keyword research, select the right keywords and topics and use them appropriately throughout the page. Keywords can be used in multiple locations within a webpage including title tags, meta descriptions, body copy, image alt text, headings, subheadings, links, URL structure, etc. It’s important to know where to place keywords because if done incorrectly, they may not perform well enough to rank highly in searches.
    • Choosing keywords based on search volume is important because it helps us determine what people are searching for online. This information allows us to make sure that we are targeting the correct audience and creating pages that match their interests.
  • Internal links
    • Internal links, menu items, and other navigation techniques tell search engines what relevant connections exist between related webpages so users find exactly what they need when they search. This ensures your visitors do not have a poor user experience.
  • Responsive Design
    • Every page of your website must be responsive so that it displays properly across all devices. Mobile users comprise up to 90% of internet traffic today when you consider social media, apps, email, etc. If you don’t want to lose this market share, then you need to ensure you have a responsive design.
    • The starting point is for each client page is mobile-first design. Before we design desktop layouts, we design all page layouts for smartphones and tablets.
  • Page Loading Time
    • Speed optimization is an essential part of any SEO strategy. The faster your site loads, the more likely someone is to stay on your site. The longer you can keep someone on your site the more likely you are to convert them to a buyer.
    • If your site takes too long to load, Google might decide it’s better off showing another result instead. That could mean losing out on potential customers who’ve already found your business through organic results.
    • This is where hosting becomes a crucial step. Try not to use shared hosting accounts, they are slow and host hundreds or thousands of other sites. Use the fastest host you can afford, it is well worth the expense.
  • Image Optimization
    • Images should always be optimized for display on different devices, such as phones, tablets, laptops, and desktops. Each image should also include alt tags, title attributes, caption text, and filenames.
  • Quality Content
    • High Quality content is critical because it helps search engines understand the intent of your page. Search engine algorithms will rank websites based on how relevant they are to keywords or phrases typed by searchers. You have a much better chance of visitors returning if they can find information easily on your website.
    • Some things that help promote quality content are: multiple types of content such as images, videos, lists, and text.
  • Site Structure
    • Use an SEO-friendly URL structure so that users know exactly which page they’re looking at. This makes navigation easier and increases user engagement.
    • Use a sitemap. This allows search engines to find all pages, posts, and links within your site.
    • Use an internal linking strategy with optimized anchor text.
    • Limit JavaScript and and large CSS files.
  • Schema Markup
    • Helps search engines better understand the content on your page.
    • The power behind rich snippets.

Off-Page Optimization

This refers to offsite activities designed to drive organic traffic to your site. Off-page optimization includes link building, social media marketing, press releases, article writing, video creation, etc.

These tactics will help build authority around your brand and attract quality inbound links that point to your website.

Practical Takeaways

There are two key factors in setting up a successful SEO website design. They are:

  1. Setting up each page with SEO practices in mind.
  2. Setting up each page with a pleasant user experience in mind. You will not achieve customer engagement without a good customer experience.

Combining the two is essential to your success in securing high rankings on local search engine pages and getting high-quality traffic to your site.

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Colorado Springs, CO 80911

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