When you hear the term web design, you might associate it with elements like lines, images, layout, colors, typography – all the pretty aspects of web design. The aesthetics are important, but they serve a much greater purpose for the website than just a pretty picture. Your web design will affect how well your website ranks on search engine result pages. Here’s how:
1. Web design attracts search engine bots, whether good or bad.
Let’s start off strong with a catch 22. Your web design will attract search engine bots, no matter what. Whether it’s poorly built or the best one on the web, your web design will attract these bots and rank it accordingly. Since that’s the case, you might be tempted to create a web design that is bot-friendly, so to speak. However, this is one of the biggest web design mistakes you can make.
If you prioritize your web design for search engine bots, it is very likely that it is not human-friendly. The role of a search engine bot is to mimic human activity. So, if your web design functions with a human-friendly priority, search engines will pick up on that and your website will rank better.
2. Web design affects how well a search engine bot can index your website.
While you should absolutely create your web design with your human website visitors as a priority, don’t forget about the search engine crawlers – sometimes called spider bots – that index your website.
Every second of the day, there are spider bots that crawl the web searching for information. Their role is to find web pages about specific information and index those web pages. Once indexed, these pages will show up in the search engine results page after a user inquires about a certain topic.
For example, if you search “marketing company in Macon, Georgia” on Google, M&R Marketing is one of the first options available under the paid ads section. Our website is listed as an option because spider bots have indexed our website to be an option if someone searches for a marketing company.
Poor web design choices or erroneous formatting can drastically affect the spider bots’ ability to index your website.
3. Web design and images can make or break your user’s experience.
Before your website visitor reads a word on your website, their first impression of your company will form by your web design and the images on your site. You need to hook your visitor with a user-friendly, stunning design and makes them want to read your content and explore your site. The more exploring your website visitors do, the higher you’ll rank on search engine results. The opposite is true, too! If website visitors are exiting out of your site within seconds and not going further than the home page, spider bots will pick up on that and lower your ranking. High-quality web design paired with high-resolution images is like the welcome you give before asking someone into your home. Don’t underestimate it.
Tips to Increase Your Search Engine Rankings
Who doesn’t want to be on the first page of search engine results?! Take a minute and search for a service or product you provide and include the city and state. Does your website rank on the first page? If not, don’t feel defeated. Accept the challenge. This is something you can change! Consider these tips:
- Prioritize simple navigation.
- De-clutter your design. Less is more.
- Focus on readability (font, colors, typography, etc).
- Implement a responsive design. (This is why a mobile-friendly site doesn’t cut it anymore.)
- Make sure your pages load FAST.
If you don’t know or don’t have time to make these changes, we can help.
Partner with M&R Marketing for Your Website Design Needs
Your website design must address visitors, both human and bots. Our team of graphic designers and developers have immense experience creating website designs that will increase search engine rankings and meet the needs of the user. Ready to get started? Give us a call with your questions: 478-621-4491.
Stay tuned for part four in our blog series about the non-negotiables of your website design:
- Part 1 – 6 Elements You Must Have in Your Website Design
- Part 2 – Avoid These 6 Website Design Mistakes
- Part 3 – How Web Design Affects Search Engine Rankings
- Part 4 – Understanding the 2 Types of Website Design