Search Engine Optimization or SEO is one of those acronyms that make business owners cringe. Every time you read an article, see a video or get an annoying call to "Claim your Google listing", people are telling you different things about how to improve your SEO. Keywords, meta tags, meta descriptions, a lot of the things that once were important, no longer are. Check out our 17 SEO Myths.
There is a reason for all the change in search engine algorithms and it all starts with the user. Search engines have realized that delivering a quality user experience is essential to their bottom line. No one will click on links that don't offer the content they are searching for. If the search engines continually deliver content that the user isn't looking for, the user will go to another search engine.
User experience, UE for short, needs to be thought of in every aspect of website development, from the design to the content to the functionality. If you get these three right, you are well on your way to getting some search engine love.
A couple tips to help you get on your way:
1. Your website needs to be mobile responsive so that the user can read and navigate your site on any device. Google now penalizes your site rank if your website isn't "mobile friendly." Get your free "Mobilegeddon" assessment.
2. Your inbound marketing needs to deliver quality content to inform, entice and delight your customers and prospectives. This is what search engines and visitors are looking for, answers to their questions and solutions to their problems. Deliver regular and informative content on the main pages of your website and through your blog and social media to get moving up the search rankings.
3. Your website needs to have the functionality that your customers want—starting with ease of navigation and continuing to short forms and possibly e-commerce or bill paying functionality. There are many ways to add functionality to a website, make sure that it is implemented well.
Search Engine Optimization and User Experience should go hand-in-hand in your online marketing strategy. Yes, you want search engines to push visitors to your website, but you also want the visitors to enjoy their experience and find what they are looking for once they are on your site.
Having a well-planned website filled with quality content will help you attract, convert, close and delight customers and potential customers.