You probably know that SEO is a crucial part of your website strategy, but what you may not know is that SEO is more than just keyword optimization and link building. Your ability to provide anyone coming to your website with the best user experience possible will go a long way in improving your search engine ranking.
Search engines try to find the best results for user searches and this includes sifting through websites to determine which are high quality. If your website design is outdated, unprofessional, or runs slowly, users will probably bounce from the page to look for a better result. While a high bounce rate isn’t officially a factor in the ranking of your website, there is evidence to suggest that it has some effect.
The bottom line is that SEO optimization includes ensuring that your website provides the best user experience possible. Now let’s talk about how you can do this.
Make Your Written Content Easy to Read
The best way to make sure that you’re writing content that will be easy for your audience to read is to focus on writing quality content. Here are some tips you can implement to make sure you’re hitting this target.
Write short paragraphs
Each of your paragraphs should only be between 3-4 sentences long. It’s ok to use paragraphs that are shorter than this, but too many short paragraphs can make your content difficult to read.
Write short sentences
Most of your audience will be reading your content on a mobile device which can make long sentences difficult to follow. Stick to short sentences in your writing, but occasionally mixing in long sentences won’t hurt.
Make use of headings and subheadings
On average, people only spend about 37 seconds reading website content. If your content is too long, this will probably make this time even shorter. However, making use of informative headings and subheadings will make it easier for readers to quickly understand what your content is about. If your headings and subheadings are particularly good, you may even be able to readers to spend more time on your website.
Use bullet points
Whenever you need to list something in your content, use bullet points to make it easier to read. Generally, if your list is three or more items long, you should use bullet points.
Break up your text
If a visitor comes to a page on your website and is met with a large wall of text, it may be overwhelming and they will be more likely to bounce from the page. You can minimize this by using supportive photos, videos, or graphs to break up your written content. The key is that anything you use should be relevant to the topic.
Don’t be afraid of white space
Making use of white space will make your content easier to read and can even help you guide visitors through the page. In fact, placing white space around text and titles can increase visitors’ attention by up to 20%. It can also make your website feel open and modern, making it more visually appealing to users.
All of these tips will help you write quality content that will provide the best user experience to people visiting your website.
Incorporate Bucket Brigades Into Your Writing
Bucket brigades are a common copywriting technique used to keep readers interested in your content. Along with headings and subheadings, they can help increase the amount of time a visitor spends reading your website content.
For anyone who is unfamiliar with this technique, a bucket brigade is a phrase that links ideas together to guide readers through your content. These phrases are often followed by a colon. Common bucket brigade examples include:
- Do I have your attention?
- Let me explain:
- Let’s recap:
- Do you want to learn how to…?
These phrases are designed to entice your visitors to continue reading and will also provide them with a great user experience when visiting your website.
Write With the Inverted Pyramid Style
The inverted pyramid is a writing style in which the most important information is provided at the beginning of the article, with information becoming less important as the reader gets to the end. This style makes sense for online content because readers rarely read content in its entirety.
Implementing this writing style will provide your users with the best user experience by allowing them to understand your content as soon as they land on the page. The best part is that if it’s interesting enough, visitors may even be more likely to continue reading the entire article.
Analyze and Test Your Web Pages
It’s important to focus on ensuring that your website is easy for visitors to use and navigate. If it isn’t, visitors will most likely bounce from your page and look for answers somewhere else. However, aside from issues like pages that are slow to load or obvious design flaws, it can be difficult to pinpoint user experience issues. Fortunately, you have a lot of options for analyzing how visitors interact with your website and what parts of it may be causing UX issues.
Here are some great tools and techniques you can use to determine what kind of user experience visitors have on your website:
- Heat maps: heat maps use different colors to represent where visitors click the most on your website.
- Scroll maps: a scroll map shows you how far down the page visitors scroll before leaving the page.
- Confetti maps: use this to find out which referral sources provided the most clicks on your web pages as well as what visitors click on most once they’re on your website.
- A/B testing: you can use A/B testing to test your website for usability and engagement. Using your current website as a control, this involves creating multiple pages with small differences from the control page and randomly showing them to visitors. A/B testing will help you determine what might need to be changed on your current website so that it’s always optimized for the best user experience.
Optimize Your Website Speed
As we’ve mentioned throughout this article, the speed of your website is a crucial factor in improving your search engine ranking and providing visitors with the best user experience possible. In fact, site speed is considered so important to the user experience that it is now officially recognized as a ranking factor for Google. If that’s not enough, according to Section.io, even just 5 extra seconds of page load time can increase your website’s bounce rate by 20%.
Having a website that is slow to load can be incredibly frustrating for your website visitors and in a time when everything is expected to happen quickly, most visitors simply won’t wait for pages to load. Wondering how you can improve your page load time? Here are some suggestions:
- Reduce unnecessary code on your website.
- Find ways to reduce your server response time.
- When choosing a hosting option, spend time on making sure that you’ve chosen the right host for your needs.
- Enable browser caching.
- Enable compression on your website.
- Compress all images you use on your web pages.
Google also offers a free service that will provide you with information about your website’s page speed and will even offer suggestions on how you can improve your website loading time on both mobile and desktop.
RESULTS ARE VITAL
To recap: you need to provide your website visitors with the best user experience possible in order to make sure you have the highest search engine ranking possible. This is simply a part of SEO that you can’t neglect if you want to be able to reach people.
If you feel that you need SEO help, Vital Digital is here to help!
We provide digital marketing services including, but not limited to content marketing, search engine optimization, and website development. We also provide HubSpot, SharpSpring, and Zapier consulting to ensure that your business is running as efficiently as possible. Request a free quote and let us know how we can help!