Your small business website is the centre of your marketing efforts. It is also the largest traffic source organically. Yet, small businesses often do not think about SEO until the website is designed. The recipe for small business website design success undeniably rests on dishing out the latest SEO tips and strategies. This is because website design is as much about marketing as it is about development.

SEO is not just about peppering your site with obvious or superficial strategies. Website SEO is fundamental for succeeding online for most businesses. Solid SEO can help with paid search, social and other inbound marketing efforts. At the most primary level, an SEO-first site permits search engines to explore and study pages across the site. Ensuring the search engine crawls and understands the content is the key step to ensuring visibility in SERP pages.

#1 Make Indexation a Cinch

To understand the site, you need to be able to read the page content. So, besides images and videos, the content of the site should be text-based. The main content needs to be text-based. Do remember that videos, graphics, PDFs and content are an important source of search engine traffic. These need to be easily indexed and discovered by search engine bots as effectively as potential customers.

To index content beyond the homepage, internal links search engines can crawl are important. Primary navigation, search engine directives and tools such as  XML sitemaps can help search engines crawl the site and discover the new pages. The site can also be easily crawled by a search engine. Context is indicated not only by the Pathwwway site, but by the positioning of marketing messages within that site. Context is further indicated by the URL. An effective naming convention provides more context for search engines and humans.

#2 Work On Navigation

The navigation needs to be equally important. When the site is well-structured, the navigation works with the structure, the URLs and other components like XML sitemaps to solidify how each page or piece of content works. Navigation goes beyond the menu of the website. It is how one signposts users to most relevant parts of the site. Navigation can serve as a powerful tool to create awareness and ease of use, provided it is crystal-clear.

#3 Be Responsive

Small business website design also needs to be mobile-first and responsive. The most popular device used to conduct internet searches and browse websites is a mobile phone. One lives in a mobile-first age. Sites optimised for search engines should, therefore, consider the mobile layout of the websites. Responsive design is just the start. Customers may use ‘n’ number of smart devices to create a truly mobile-friendly design, and maximise results from a mobile search. Work on optimal user experience for mobile users and rewards for efforts will be plentiful in terms of user engagement and traffic.

#4 Work On Page Load Speed

Another crucial area of concern for boosting on-page SEO for small business websites is load speed. Considering that the average human being has an attention span lower than that of a goldfish or fruit-fly, according to research, it is essential to stand out and quick page load speeds are the key to this. Ensure that pages are lean and quick to load. Google research points to how clients can leave your site within 3-5 seconds of it not loading. Device-specific design, page speed, design conventions and an intuitive, in-depth approach keeps the end user in mind. Important elements need to be prominent, and elements need to be bigger. Forms need to be lightweight and easy to fill. Large sites need to have a well-positioned search option.  Great small business website design makes everything easier.

#5 Nail Your Keyword Targeting

Nailing the keyword strategy is so much easier, once there is a solid structure without internal duplication/canonicalisation. Adding keywords that are relevant, refined and long tail can make a difference to your search engine ranking. Consider modifiers like location, if one is a business situated within local areas. A well-structured site gets to a point where solid strategies are in place to target broad and more detailed terms. Place keywords at the start of tags, and use keywords in a natural way. Having a consistent approach across the site is important.

#6 Work on Metadata

Meta descriptions may not influence rankings, but these are equally important for startup website design. The meta description is a promotional content for the page in search engine results. It is ultimately because your meta description is what wins the clicks. Winning the clicks can improve visibility and drive more users to pages. Meta descriptions advertise the page and improve click-through rates.

Consider the user’s perspective and include keywords in relevant and natural ways. Search engines highlight search terms in the page title and meta description, so users can scan the page. Using the search engine to pull content from the page to form a description that accurately reflects the user’s search is important.

Further, metadata like headings structure the page and indicate document hierarchy. Text in the heading tags correlate with improved rankings, but what matters most is the alignment of the site structure, meta data and content itself.

#7 Optimise Images

Image-based SEO can drive substantial traffic in the correct circumstances. Context matters here, too. Google does not use image content. So context within the site and page and basic optimisation are crucial here. Image optimisation is straightforward. Small business website design needs to place the right image, use descriptive alt text to reinforce image content and use the right file sizes. Improve loading time and use OpenGraph as well as Twitter Cards, so images are used in social shares. Consider adding images to XML sitemaps.

#8 Prevent Duplication of Content

There are different ways to ensure your small business website content does not fall prey to duplication. Besides word-for-word copying, thin or similar content can be a real let-down, when it comes to ranking high on SERP. Other issues to avoid include keyword cannibalisation, where multiple pages target the same keyword. Don’t let the site be available on multiple domains, subdomains or protocols. Another SEO issue on-page can be an incorrect implication of canonical URLs.

#9 Work on Great User Experience

Exceptional and strategic on-page SEO is as much about the user experience as it is about keyword analysis. Small business website design will fall to the wayside, unless UX and UI are optimised. It is important for individuals in other tech fields such as web design to be able to keep up and work on boosting customer experience. Ultimately, your site should be SEO-friendly for optimal impact on search engines and human readers alike.

Posted by IT Pathwwway