In the modern digital environment, SEO and UX go hand in hand as the two foundational pillars of an amazing digital presence for any growth-oriented company. Simply put, you can’t have one without the other nowadays, because Google and other search engines pay special attention to the UX of a website as well as its SEO, both of which can negatively or positively affect the user’s experience and your ranking. Don’t be alarmed if it sounds confusing right now, all you need to know is that UX and SEO are inextricably intertwined in this digital game.
That said, how do you go about combining the two and maximizing their potential without making any SEO mistakes along the way? Today, we’ll be answering these questions by showing you the five best ways you can combine SEO and UX to take your website to the next level.
1. Simplify your website architecture
First and foremost, one of the easiest and best ways to maximize your UX and SEO potential is to streamline, organize, and just simplify your site’s architecture. Concrete and streamlined site architectures are easier to crawl through, which Google loves, and they are easier for the user to consume without opting out because they feel overwhelmed by the sheer scale and complexity of your site.
You might not think that having a simple website architecture is possible if you’re running an Ecommerce store, for example, but even online stores can achieve this with the right approach. To simplify your site’s architecture, you need to prioritize three elements: content, the user, and context of use.
All of the content on your website should have its place and purpose, and it should lead the user towards a desired outcome. The user needs to be able to browse your website intuitively, they should know where they are at all times. To achieve this, you should provide them with a sitemap, a search function, quick sidebar filters, and other quality of life features on your site.
2. Optimize content for better UX and SEO
Content creation is not just something that marketers and SEO experts should worry about, it’s actually a big part of UX design. In fact, UX designers and strategists need to work hand in hand with marketers and content creators to create the best possible content strategy for a website that will appeal to search engines as well as online audiences.
You see, it’s not just about what you write, it’s also how you structure and design the content and web copy to follow a simple structure throughout the site. It’s important to optimize the content with UX in mind, so make sure to break it into short paragraphs, use proper headings, add meta descriptions, add alt tags to images, and sprinkle the right CTAs throughout the site to add relevance, structure, and purpose to every action.
3. Use SEO data to evaluate your site’s performance and UX
Of course, you can never be sure if you’re on the right track if you’re not following and measuring the right KPIs. That’s why you need to keep a close eye on your SEO performance and use the right SEO reporting tools that will provide as much information about your website about what drives it up and down the search results. This will prove invaluable in gauging the performance of your UX strategy as well.
By monitoring various SEO KPIs and metrics that tell you how your users interact with your site, how long they stick around and where they choose to opt out, or how well the content on individual pages is performing, you can get an idea of where you can improve UX design to achieve better results. The same goes for your UX analytics, which can feed your SEO strategy.
4. Reduce page loading time and ensure content consistency
Moving along, we need to pay special attention to those quality of life features that can greatly determine a website’s standing in the search results. Page loading time and content consistency are becoming increasingly important to Google and the online audience, because nobody is going to wait around for your website to fully load all of its content.
Likewise, your users are invariably going to “flip” if the content on your page is not consistent. What does that mean exactly? Imagine a customer reaching the checkout page. They now have the option to place their order or back out, the two buttons standing very close to each other. If the content is not consistent, and if a popup appears that affects the layout and the position of the buttons, it might inadvertently cause them to click on the wrong button.
This is the type of content inconsistency and website design mistake that gets people furious and negatively affects your ranking and UX, making Google penalize your site.
5. Optimize the experience for user intent
Last but not least, always remember that your UX and SEO need to complement the specific user intent. Every customer and website visitor is at a different stage of the buyer’s journey. Some are looking for quality information, some are comparing options, and others are ready to buy.
The content and page layout you present to them will either attract or alienate the user depending on where they’re at in their journey. This is a golden opportunity to optimize your copy and UX on every landing page to lead the customer towards the desired outcome, which will make your website more relevant in Google’s eyes as well.
In the end, there is no denying that SEO and UX share an inextricable bond. Be sure to use these tips to bring UX and SEO together and maximize their potential to take your business forward in the online world.
About the Author
Tamara Novitović is a content specialist that has many articles published with the main focus on brands that want to grow in the fast-changing and demanding market. Her personal favorites are the successes of SaaS startups and young IT entrepreneurs.