Top 20 Tips To Create Search Friendly Website
Website structure is the center of attention for SEOs because it affects:
- The ability of search engines to analyze your content
- How users interacts with your site
Today, with quality-focused search engines, developers are also paying keen attention to ensure search engine-friendly websites. SEO services are keen to advice restructuring any given website, write from the start; otherwise, their efforts will be wasted. It means higher development cost.
If you’ve been recommended a complete website overhaul, these tips will help you understand the nature of issues related to current website.
Opt For HTTPS Encryption
HTTPS encryption was meant for e-commerce sections, but now, Google has factored this security into ranking algorithm. It might be a small factor, but it will ensure maximum safety for your website. However, it may affect the site speed.
Update Your Security Certificate Regularly
Visitors can leave away if they see expired security certificates. Make sure all certificates are renewed and updated on timely basis.
Change Robot.txt File
It’s a common thing that a developer may forget to modify robot.txt file that enables search engines to crawl. This could mean low ranking. Re-check your robot.txt file for crawling.
Mention Document Type
The doctype for the page enables browsers to translate it. If the doctype is not declared, browser makes a guess, which is mostly correct. But they some pages are difficult to translate, even for browsers.
Use valid HTML and CSS
At times, invalid HTML may also cause incorrect translation. Use proper sitemaps so that search engines may guess your websites correctly.
Don’t Use HTML Frames
In fact, avoid a developer who only uses frames. Toronto SEO companies recommend not to use such practice because it may cause problem during optimization.
Add Alt-Text With Images
An image without CSS must be labeled with alt-text. It’ll take just a few seconds to write the text, but if you continue this practice you’ll see the results yourself.
301 Redirect Old URLs
While redesigning an existing website, you may need to change URLs of few pages. Make a backup of all URLs to make sure you 301 redirect those that have changed or the invalid ones. In this way, you can keep the authority of these pages (most of it) and pass it on to new pages.
Create 404 Pages
It’s a safety measure to create 404 page for invalid URLs, just in case if you have missed 301 redirects for any old URLs.
Use CSS for Printer-friendly Pages
Printer-friendly pages are no longer needed, especially in today’s smartphone era. However, if you want to make your pages printer-friendly, use CSS to edit/format them.
Underline and Format Clickable Links
Underlining hyperlinked text is still a standard practice. Keep it simple for better user experience. Use different font or formatting for hyperlinked text. Many sites have this problem, but users don’t like putting the mouse-pointer over text to figure out if it’s a link or not.
Use Canonical Breadcrumbs
Visitors can land on any page and it depends upon their search term. Instead of following his navigation path, use breadcrumbs to point canonical URLs.
Develop Balanced Page Hierarchy
Page hierarchy has become important, ever since Google’s new algorithm, Pigeon was released. Establish hierarchical format mimicking the website’s navigation. All URLs must represent navigational categories and their subcategories. At the same time, make sure visitors meet their objectives with minimum clicks. Keep a balanced approach, because your audience will not spend too much time searching the right option on your homepage.
Create Unique Title Tags and Descriptions
Title tag for every page must reflect the content below the fold. Save your time by optimizing title tags with relevant keywords, rather than optimizing rest of the content. Don’t forget to keep it below 55 characters. Similarly, add engaging and optimized meta descriptions to improve click through rate, but keep it below 155 characters.
Properly Code List Items
Use HTML codes to differentiate text with list items. It may affect the search value.
Decrease Code Bloat
Code bloat occurs when developers don’t consume proper time during web development. As a result, the page speed slows down and affects website’s overall performance.
Avoid HTML Table Usage
As with frames, avoid using too many HTML tables. Instead of creating tables and managing them with HTML, use CSS format.
Use absolute links in navigation.
Web developers prefer relative links which makes it easier for them to shift sites to Live URL from development server. In reality, relative links cause problems in scraping and interpretation. Instead, use absolute links wherever possible.
Although, there are plenty other things to take care, these things when fixed, will surely help get a few good upticks from search engines. Now, you can raise appropriate concerns and ask your developer to do things the right way.