How To Use Web Design to Maximize SEO

Nicole Krosnowski

Senior Designer

When talking about SEO, most people in the SEO community focus on things like content, keywords, and solving searchers’ problems. One aspect that is often overlooked is the actual page design and flow of the UI elements. The way that your content sits on a page can have a huge impact on SEO.

Elements in Your Design Flow

When thinking about your page’s design, you must consider how the content is delivered, also called the content flow. The best way to approach this is by writing down what the searcher is trying to accomplish, understanding all intents behind the search and what you want visitors to do. Once you answer these questions, you can design a content flow that includes the following:

  • Headline

  • Featured snippet

  • Header image

  • Body content

  • Graphics and visuals

  • Reference links

  • Footer

  • Sidebar

5 Goals to Focus On

Following the proper design flow helps your content stand out. Not only do you need the proper elements but also they need to be organized in a helpful, relevant manner. Here are the goals we recommend focusing on to achieve proper flow.

1. Solve the searcher’s query quickly.

Serve the answer the searcher is looking for up front. Don’t make them dig for it. You are not writing a book and building suspense. In fact, delaying the solution will only frustrate readers and may send them off your page. Imagine how you’ve felt when you’ve visited a page that you thought contained helpful information, only to find that the content beat around the bush?

2. Address the searcher’s intent in order of demand.

In many cases, a search query has several solutions. For example, if the searcher is looking for ways to reuse their furniture, they can do this by painting it, sanding it down and staining it, or repurposing it into something else. Assuming that people will opt for the cheaper, faster, and easier method, you would address the painting solution first.

3. Fit in the business goal, providing it goes along with the content.

As important as it is to provide helpful content to your readers, you also have goals to meet. Ideally, you want to fit in your business goal while serving your customers, but avoid forcing it. So, if your goal is to rank for “acrylic paint for furniture”, it would fit naturally in the content. Always serve your customers first, but don’t forget about your goals.

4. Claim the featured snippet and visual image.

The featured snipped and image are usually the first few lines of text that are placed at the top of search results. This information is extracted from a webpage and shown to users in a box of text. Optimizing for this snippet is a great way to build more traffic to your site. Check out Moz’s article for more detailed information on optimizing your snippet for Google.

5. Limit your bounce back to the SERP.

Ideally, you want to limit the design flow elements that interfere with people solving their problems. These include pop-up ads, interstitial ads, promotional blocks, and others. When people are trying to find information on their problem and the content is blocked, it forces them to return to the SERP, hurting your rankings.

Now you know how to make your content stand out by the design alone. By optimizing your design flow, you can improve SEO without creating new content and links.

About the Author: Nicole Krosnowski

Nicole is a Designer at SEMGeeks. She is a Jersey girl who loves to “go down the shore” and spend her time at the beach. Nicole is a creative thinker, fueled by iced coffee and innovation. She loves to stay up to date with the latest trends in fashion and technology and uses this as design inspiration. With experience in web design, digital design and advertising, she approaches each project with a designer’s careful eye and a marketer’s strategic thought process.

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