Who doesn’t want more visitors on their website? You have a number of options to get people there. One of them is Search engine optimization — SEO. Web design and SEO go hand by hand in today’s world. Google develops their SEO to preference, good design, and frequent updates. You will not get away with only keywords and site description.

 

But what exactly is SEO? SEO helps bring you organic traffic to your website. In these tips, you can learn how to get the most of it.

Tip 1: Speed Matters

Page load time is very important part of search engine optimization (SEO). Every visitor expects your website to be loaded fast. If it takes more than 3 seconds, 50% of the visitors will go away. And that’s something you have to avoid.

How to improve

Make sure your images size isn’t too large. It makes a huge difference if a browser has to load 2MB file or just 100kB. If you’re saving your JPEGs, use 80% quality. You can find a number of services that are here to help you compress your files. Like TinyPNG where you can see exactly how much size you saved.

Another way to load your website faster is minimizing code. That way, website files are smaller. Again, there's plenty of websites where you can minify code online. One example is Minifier.org.

Lastly, be aware of where and when your Javascript is loaded. If it doesn't affect functionality put your libraries to the bottom of the HTML code right before the tag.

Tip 2: SEO friendly URLs

This is one of the key tips and it really helps you to be higher in Google results. To achieve having SEO friendly URLs you have to make sure your website’s structure is clean, logical and straightforward to your topic.

You can also include topic keywords in the address. It’s important that keyword research is well-informed, especially if they’re used in your URL.

Bad URL: www.example.com/?p=78346738
Good URL: www.example.com/article-about-dogs

How to improve

Try to avoid relative and dynamic URLs where possible. Keep in mind, the easier a URL is to read for humans, the better it is for search engines.

Shorter URLs are always better. You don’t have to take this to the extreme. If you’re around 60 characters, you’re fine. But don’t try to create 150-characters addresses just to include all your keywords in it.

Use 1–2 folders per URL. More folders make it hard for Google to understand your topic.

And last but not least, try not to use these characters: “” < > # % ‘space’

Tip 3: Responsive design is important

Responsive design isn’t only necessary for your mobile visitors. The increase in mobile usage and Google’s mobile-friendly algorithm has even made mobile-friendly design the highest priority. 67% of internet users claim they’re more likely to purchase on a mobile device than the desktop version.

How to improve

You can use one of the responsive frameworks like Bootstrap. Using its HTML classes is the easiest way to make your website mobile-friendly.

If you don’t want to use a framework, use “@media” in your CSS code. Then you will be able to create a responsive design and bring it to your visitors/customers.

In case none of the options are fit to your capabilities or preferences and you are using one of the CMS, you can find responsive templates. Choose the one you like and the template will take care of the rest. Tons of templates for many CMS and e-commerce platforms are at TemplateMonster.com.

We can build a custom-made template or customize existing. See more at Web7master.com.

Tip 4: Social media integration

Social media integration has a huge impact on website's ranking. Add your social media icons on your site. The more visible, the better. Also, don't forget to enable social share buttons so your visitors can easily spread your content to other people.

But only buttons will not help you. You also have to have right og tags in your head so e.g. Facebook knows what are you sharing.

How to improve

You can find many social media icons as a part of FontAwesome.io. If you'd like to enable share buttons see AddThis. It has a number of types of displaying buttons almost anywhere on your page.

If you want to check your og tags for Facebook, debugger tool is available here.

Tip 5: Get rid of flash

Since it's 2017, you should avoid using flash on your site. Most search engines and browsers have decided not to be flash friendly because of its insecurity. So if you are not using HTML5 instead, it impacts your ratings.

How to improve

HTML5 can do the work for you. Invest some time and money and switch your flash content to the modern form of websites.

In case you aren't sure how to do it, read some tutorials.

8 Tips To Convert Flash To HTML5 That Will Help Your Business - eLearning Industry

Convert Flash Ads to HTML5 | Adobe Animate CC tutorials

What to expect when converting Flash to HTML5 | Creative Cloud blog by Adobe

Tip 6: Create sitemaps

An XML sitemap informs Google about the pages of your website that are available for crawling. So make sure you have some on your server.

How to improve

There are many sitemaps generator, you don't have to do it by yourself. I recommend Xml-Sitemaps.com.

Enter your URL, press start button, download the XML file with your sitemap and then upload it to Google Webmaster Account. It may take some time before Google process it, no need to worry about that. By the time it's done, you can see it in your website settings.

You can also upload the sitemap to the root of your website.

Tip 7: Take care about your content

Content on your site is important not only in terms of content but also freshness. The more up-to-date text you have, the better are the rankings. Don't be one of the guys who think it's ok to load the website with some kind of stuff and leave it like that for 10 years.

And by the way, if you refresh your texts often, people will go back to your site just because they are interested in what you put there.

How to improve

It depends on what type of website are you running. But in most scenarios, starting a blog fits great.

Make sure you add blog posts regarding the topic of the site. If you are an owner of a restaurant, add some recipes. Have you an online store? Great, write reviews of products you are selling. There's always a way to impress your visitors by great content.

I hope these few tips will help you to bring more visitors to your websites. Keep in mind, it’s not necessary to rely only on paid marketing. A couple of changes for free can make a difference, too.

 

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