Are you tired of those spam emails promising to get you to the top of Google? But do they also make you wonder if there's a holy grail that will help your site rank higher?
Well there is, but it might not be one you're thinking of - usability.
Ever since people realised that Google's rankings could be manipulated, SEO experts have been kept busy, tweaking sites and selling their latest tricks.
But all the major Google updates of the last few years have made it harder to fool the system. Instead, Google now looks more favourably on websites that follow current best practice.
Easy to use websites
So making a website for that's easy for people to use (surely a good idea?) now also happens to help your site ranking too.
Google will demote sites that are difficult to navigate, have irrelevant headings and copy and those that aren't mobile-friendly. It will also promote sites that demonstrate good "user engagement", although it isn't well-known how Google measures that.
But if you're using a website to promote your products or services then you want to engage people anyway. That means they are interested, interested people are prospects, prospects can become customers.
What is "usable"?
Pay attention to the following ease-of-use guidelines as a minimum:
- Navigation - easy and clear, offer a search facility, consistent across pages, clear calls to action.
- Layout - should work well on mobile and desktops, use white space, bullets and images well.
- Content - make it easy to contact you, add relevant content.
- Functionality - quick to load, no broken links, avoid flash.
Is that all?
No - many other "ranking factors" will help - regularly updating your site, adding relevant, useful content, getting other high-ranking websites to link to yours, that sort of thing.
But if you don't get usability right from the start, you're starting the race well behind everyone else.
Get expert help
We combine marketing expertise and design creativity with practical technical knowledge.
This means keeping up with the latest SEO and digital marketing techniques to get you in front of the right prospects online, making your website easy to find and use.
Then your branding, marketing collateral and even packaging can be brought into line with your marketing and digital marketing strategies - creating one coherent whole.
Each element then supports and feeds all the others - reinforcing your image and creating real impact on your bottom line.
To find out what impact that would on your business why not drop us a line, call, or even pop in for a coffee?