To enjoy a well-designed website, users will first have to find it on a search engine. However, getting your website to rank isn’t as simple as consolidating information about your business and publishing it online. You’ll have to develop an easy-to-navigate sitemap, aesthetically pleasing layout, and a responsive design to show up on Google.
Keeping SEO in mind is an excellent way to ensure online success when developing a website. Read on to find out how SEO and web development go hand in hand.
What is SEO-Based Web Design and Why Does it Matter?
Search engine optimization pertains to optimizing your website to rank well on search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Part of optimizing a website is carefully crafting pages to achieve search-friendliness.
While you can easily advertise your website on social media or invest in a PPC campaign, finding organic methods of improving your search engine rankings can help you cut costs and maximize results.
Below are a few reasons why incorporating SEO tactics into your web development process makes sense.
Increase Organic Traffic
Well-designed websites are more likely to rank organically (read: free). By incorporating deliberate SEO tactics into your design strategy, you increase your chances of becoming the first search result.
Just think—after losing the first search position on Google, your clicks drop by 6%. By the time you reach the tenth position, you only garner roughly 2.5% of clicks. Dropping off even further from the first page can hurt your organic results.
Improve User Experiences
For your website to become a Google favorite, it should be just as user-friendly as search engine-optimized. Ensuring that your website is easy to navigate can reduce your bounce rate and make it more likely for customers to follow through with their purchases.
As it becomes increasingly easy to exchange information online, many businesses have to go out of their way to keep company and consumer data from falling into the wrong hands. Most web developers build websites using HTTPS to keep your website secure.
Since 2015, security features have become a defining factor in how websites rank on Google. That means Google will prioritize an HTTPS-built website over a non-HTTPS website, regardless of whether other aspects rank equal.
Maximize Marketing Budget
While SEO strategies can become a significant time investment, they typically provide excellent returns for minimal cost. If you don’t have an in-house developer, working with an able, outsourced agency can eliminate any guesswork and guarantee a high-quality design.
Components of an SEO-Friendly Website Structure
SEO-friendly web structures can do wonders for click-throughs and conversions. To ensure your site is SEO-friendly, consider the structure below.
When arranging your pages, always take a top-to-bottom approach. Prioritize aspects of your site that might make the most significant impact on visitors. For instance, a best-selling products page might take precedence over your PR page.
Use overarching pages to link out to subcategories. If you sell more than one type of product, lump these subcategories under a main “products” page.
Keep your number of core and subcategories to a manageable level. You want to be specific but help visitors get to where they want to be as quickly as possible.
Google favors simple, readable URLs with familiar words. These URLs make stronger impressions that drive qualified traffic to your website.
Use URLs to communicate the location of your page. Use the same labels as your categories (i.e., blog, contact-us, about-us).
Headers and Footers
While you want to keep visitors on your site, they shouldn’t have to spend too much time navigating it. Cut time short by displaying primary sections in your header, including the same contents in your footer in a smaller font.
Tips for Incorporating SEO Into Web Development
Now that you know SEO and web development functions tangentially, it’s time to put these site-building tips into practice.
Clean up Your Site Navigation
What you publish on your website is just as important as how easily your visitors can access that content. If your site is challenging to browse, chances are visitors will click out quickly.
Remember, most online users are pressed for time and want to access valuable information as efficiently as possible. You can make their sales journey more seamless by designing an easy-to-read menu with clear steps.
Focus on Speed
Nowadays, Google’s algorithm considers speed when ranking your website on its search engine. Because modern online users value instant gratification, most won’t stick around on a website that takes a long time to load.
When working on your website speeds, you’ll have to consider the media you’re publishing, your web host, coding, and traffic volume.
As your business scales and trends change, even evergreen content on your website will eventually need an update. Regularly updating your website tells search engines that you’re active—it’ll also increase your crawling frequency.
When updating blog posts and articles, remember to keep new high-volume keywords in mind. However, you’ll want to refrain from keyword stuffing—while Google values frequently searched keywords, it prioritizes meaningful content that users find helpful.
Be Mobile Responsive
Since 2015, Google has considered mobile-friendliness a ranking factor for websites. Experts predict that three-quarters of all internet users will access online spaces exclusively from their mobile devices in 2025.
The Bottom Line
The key to a high-ranking and well-designed website is to keep SEO in mind during the development stage. Remember, the best way to rank is to take a user-first approach, keeping all site elements readable and accessible.
Are you looking to build a website that converts? Consult with our design experts at Igloo today. We have years of industry experience and have developed award-winning websites that seamlessly meet business goals.