How Great UX Can Boost SEO
SEO is more about user experience than you might expect, learn how great UX can boost SEO rankings for your site.
Experience is a form of currency in the 21st Century. In the modern world, with an increasing amount of our interaction taking place in the digital realm, user experience (UX) is how brands and businesses can differentiate themselves from competitors.
Of equal importance is the impact that a positive UX can have on a website’s SEO performance – arguably the most critical tool in the modern marketing arsenal. Taking the time to tailor UX to your target audience will lead to even greater success.
Solid UX impresses Google
Yes, other search engines are available. Be honest, though – how often have you had a question and thought, “I know, I’ll Bing it?” There’s a reason why google has been added to the dictionary as a verb.
Any business hoping to see superior results needs to stay on the right side of Google’s page ranking algorithm. Over a quarter of people click the first result of any search term, making the odds of gaining traction from page 2 or beyond increasingly remote. To earn these priority clicks, you’ll need to impress our Google overlords.
The actual ins and outs of Google’s algorithms are a closely guarded secret and tend to vary. Be wary of any marketing agency that promises to know precisely how to leap to the top of page 1 of any search result – they’re likely selling snake oil.
It is widely accepted that creating a positive experience for users will improve your Google page ranking, though. UX is so crucial that page experience is now among the metrics assessed by the search engine. UX factors taken under consideration in Google Page Experience include:
- Mobile-friendliness of your site
- Speed of page loading
- Security of site overall (an active SSL certificate is the very least that you’ll need)
- Lack of unwelcome pop-ups and other interruptions to the website experience
The more significant consideration you give these factors, the higher your page will rank. This, naturally, will improve your SEO fortunes – which, again, will capture the attention of Google. It’s a perfect circle of success, provided you pay the appropriate attention at the onset of your UX journey.
Superior UX keeps users on a website
Do you need to redesign your business website to improve UX? Building a website designed exclusively to appeal to Google is unwise. As much power as the algorithms of this search engine yield, they are just lines of code within a machine. It’s human consumers that purchase your products and services and spend time reading your content.
Consider user experience online as equivalent to the service you receive at a restaurant. An effective server will be polite and well turned out when they greet you. They will clearly explain anything you need to know, such as the day’s specials. They will leave you to peruse the menu in your own time, but always be ready to react when you wish to act. They’ll work tirelessly in the background to ensure that your dining experience is pleasurable. Such service will result in more than just a generous tip for the server. It will also likely result in your return to the eatery, as well as recommending it to others.
On the other hand, if your waiter or waitress was slow to respond to your queries, constantly interrupted your dinner conversation or forgot to bring parts of your meal when serving, the impression will be less favourable. Couple this with uncomfortable light, wobbly chairs and other elements that impact restaurant ambience, and you have a recipe for a one-and-done visit.
This has been a somewhat long and torturous analogy, but the point stands. Users who have a good time on your website will return and share your site with peers. As a result, your SEO rankings will continue to climb steadily. If your site is slow to load, covered with annoying pop-ups or fails to provide what a user is looking for, you will not attract return visits – and likely see an SEO performance slump.
UX-led content generates new leads
Content marketing is not an approach that every website looks to embrace. An eCommerce site, for example, may prefer to prioritise immediate sales over a slow, steady build in brand recognition. If your business model can hold firm and play the long game, superior UX applied to your content marketing can work wonders for your SEO.
For the uninitiated, content marketing involves building trust and brand awareness through helpful articles and guides. Content marketing does not aim to rush a user to a CTA and convince them to make a rapid conversion. Instead, it intends to attract curious readers to your website. This way, they’ll be aware of your business and bear you in mind for any future custom.
Content marketing is an increasingly popular approach, which means that competition is fierce. If your content marketing strategy is not geared up to offer a welcoming UX, you’re wasting time. You’ll wait forever for future business that never arrives. When creating content, always prioritise the wishes and needs of your target audience. Provide compelling information, with prose broken into digestible chunks (ideally no more than 300 words per sub-heading) and paired with eye-catching images.
It will not require too much effort to show this attention to detail, enhancing user experience appropriately. The rewards, however, are vast. The more appealing your content, the higher it will rank on Google – and attract organic shares and backlinks. Each of these factors will provide a bona fide boost to your SEO performance.
Consumers convert when UX impresses
Perhaps the most essential element of the UX and SEO relationship is the potential for greater conversions. Put bluntly, users are far likelier to part with their hard-earned money if you’ve convinced them to do so through a great experience.
Organic conversions are obviously great for the bottom line of your business. They will bring income into your coffers without any percentage due to an advertiser or hosting platform. They will also be noted by Google, though.
These conversions will mark your website out as a leader in your niche, thus improving your page ranking and SEO standing. If we return to our first point, you’ll recall why that can be so beneficial. Making an effort to create a pleasurable UX stands your site in the greatest stead to achieve that coveted first organic search result.