There is an art to website design. From architecture to content, each piece of your website fits with the next for the most effective layout, design and user experience. This idea is especially true when it comes to designing a new website from scratch. By keeping SEO in mind from the start, you will avoid having to do major tweaks and changes. Likewise, your site will reap the SEO benefits, including more visibility on the search engine results page (SERP) and an increase in traffic.
A number of elements combine to create a new SEO website design that maximizes its full potential. In this series, let’s take a look at the top five elements of launching a new SEO website design.
The Five Major Elements of SEO Website Design
Platform- One of your first steps in launching your new SEO website will be selecting your site’s platform. Think about your site’s goals. Are you primarily an e-commerce site? Or are you more content or blog focused? A simple HTML site may fulfill basic website needs, but for more complex sites, a content management system (CMS) may be your best bet. For an e-commerce website, enterprise e-commerce based platforms such as Magento and Demandware offer SEO friendly platforms. For content based sites, WordPress offers a user-friendly, easy to use platform and can be used with a variety of SEO plug-ins to help with your efforts.
Architecture– For a friendly SEO website design, structure your site’s architecture with crawlability in mind. A well-planned link structure allows the spiders to easily navigate through the pages of a website. Likewise, create a clear URL naming convention with descriptive URLs for the most effective search results. Internal linking can help decrease the depth of your site by creating paths throughout your new SEO website design. Creating a clear XML and HTML site map is considered an SEO best practice and helps the spiders efficiently crawl your site.
Hosting– Speed, reliability and performance all factor into SEO rankings. Your IP address is your home, your piece of the Internet. Investing in a dedicated IP helps ensure your new website loads quickly and efficiently. Cloud hosting offers an alternative to a dedicated IP, as it offers room for growth and little downtime. If your site is hosted on a shared IP address, take a look at your neighbors. There are a variety of techniques to prevent your site from being affected by spammy neighbors, including a Class C IP block. Likewise, regularly monitor and test your site using reverse IP look-up and with Google Webmaster tools for the most effective new SEO website design.
HTML Design Elements– When determining the SEO website design of your site, your most important content should be in HTML format. This type of formatting is the preferred SEO best practice and allows the spiders to easily crawl your site. Many sites struggle with balancing a visual design and SEO-friendly elements. The goal is to create a clean and engaging site, filled with SEO website design elements. Page titles, meta descriptions, header tags, alt image tags and additional foundational elements combine to create an SEO friendly page.
Content– Quality and engaging content continues to reign in the Post-Penguin SEO world. Fresh content matters, including content pages, a frequently updated blog and customer reviews. With natural and keyword-rich content, the spiders will easily identify the goals and purpose of your new website. Content provides a solid foundation for your site to live on and support the other SEO elements. After all, without fresh and quality content your site will just be bare bones.
Elite will explore each of these elements of launching a new SEO website design in depth throughout the blog series, making your SEO website design launch easier than ever.