How UI/UX Design Can Change Website’s SEO Rankings

User interface (UI) and user experience (UX) must always be on your mind when designing a website. These two will help you get higher SEO rankings since search engines are focused on users and their needs.

Google algorithm evolves consistently and keeping up with those changes is the key to achieving higher website ranks. Both UI and UX contribute to a website’s SEO rankings. UI does it with satisfactory interactions and visuals, and UX by providing the best browsing through website structuring. Here is how UI/UX design can affect your website’s SEO and its ranking.   

1.    Creating simple navigation

The simpler the navigation — the easier it will be for users to browse through your website. The principle is that users will get bored if they are trying to find something for too long and leave the website. Because of this, the time someone spends on your website pages will decrease and that can negatively affect your SEO rankings.

To make sure your website is efficient, you should focus on building the site architecture at the same time as navigation structuring and adding meta tags. Keep in mind that your website tells a story about your brand both through visual experience and its functionality. You don’t want to annoy the site visitors but to offer them a simple and informative solution for successful navigation.    

2.    Increasing the time people spend on your website

As mentioned, it matters how much time visitors spend on individual pages of your website. This is called bounce rate and search engines will penalize your website if this factor is high. Sometimes people come to your website by accident or your black-hat tactics brought them there. Nonetheless, that will also affect the bounce rate.

Long session duration will have a huge impact on your SEO rankings since it shows that you delivered a quality experience for your users. Well-designed UI/UX will glue visitors to your pages, providing Google algorithm with data to push your website to the top. 

3.    Providing faster page loading

Visitors don’t have the patience to wait for pages to load! Considering people can find what they’re looking for elsewhere, this is a significant issue when it comes to high SEO ranking. Faster loading speed is gained through well-developed UX design.

Statistics say that 46% of people don’t like waiting for pages to load and a delay lasting 100 milliseconds can lower your conversion rates by 7%. So, pay attention to your website design, for example, the interface, audio files, videos, and other elements that will impact the loading speed. Google algorithm will interpret people leaving your website as negative behavior and penalize you.

4.    Improving search engine optimization

Google crawlers love SEO-friendly websites and if yours is not built that way, you may have a problem with rankings. The problem is your visitors are humans and bots, so you have to satisfy both of those audiences. SEO is used here to help bots have a human-like experience on your website, as well as for actual visitors to enjoy your pages.

This is a complex task that requires working with an SEO agency or having SEO experts on staff. Elements, like metadata and tags, will allow bots to easily interpret the data as though they are human. Doing it by yourself without any SEO experience can do more damage than good, turning your website into a mess. So, it’s better to let experts handle this part since low SEO rankings are easy to get but harder to correct.        

5.    Creating a website for users on all screen sizes

The type of devices people use today to access websites has increased, with cell phones being on the top. This is not surprising considering that almost everyone has a smartphone with the Internet and that is how they visit most of the online content. While developing an app is also a good idea, you need to primarily focus on building a website that is displayable on all screen sizes.

The mobile-friendly design will resize the website to fit the user’s screen and allow easier navigation through its content. Remember, if visitors can’t find what they are looking for fast or get lost due to poor navigation, they will leave. Before you publish a website, test it on several mobile devices and do so every time you make changes or add something new. 

6.    Making CTA more impactful

Call-To-Action or CTA can increase the number of your followers and have an impact on the overall experience of your website. Think of CTAs as arrows pointing your visitors in the directions of the content and products they need. Using CTA will increase the click-through rate and that is something that can make a lot of difference to your website’s SEO rankings.

CTA can be as simple as a button saying “Contact Us” or “Follow Us”, but it can also be an image or text, encouraging visitors to some kind of action. However, creating an effective CTA is not simple and you need to employ techniques, like attention-grabbing design, clear promise, a sense of urgency, and action-focused copy.

7.    Serving your target audience

You will often hear marketing experts stressing that knowing your audience is crucial for success. When you build a UI/UX design, you have to think of what kind of visitors you want to attract and keep on your website. Keep in mind that audience behavior is one aspect (long paragraphs lead to a high bounce rate) and the type of audience your website is made for is another.

To serve your target audience, you should stay true to the themes you established and not add content that is out of context. They are looking for specific information, entertainment, services, or products so be direct and find the simplest way to cater to their needs. Inability to attract your target audience or not focusing on one can be harmful to your bounce rate and lead to bad SEO ranking.

The bottom line

Website design has turned into a science for the last decade or so, with SEO rankings being one of the most valuable marketing attributes. You can still build a website by yourself, but without the extensive knowledge of the UI/UX design techniques, it may bring you more trouble than gain. Instead, collaborate with SEO experts, know your target audience, and prepare the content accordingly for UI/UX design that will get you on the top of search results.    

Mike Parsons

Mike is an Australian business consulting specialist. He’s working with companies that outsource their IT maintenance. He often writes about technology, business and marketing and is a regular contributor on several websites.

Mike Parsons has 52 posts and counting. See all posts by Mike Parsons

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