A website that is well designed but is not SEO friendly may not get the same number of hits as one that is friendly towards search engines. For this reason alone, web designers should design websites that are SEO-friendly. While there are no hard and fast rules and it is a well known fact that algorithms and SEO rules change and evolve continuously, one needs to accept the fact that a few basic concepts with regard to SEO-friendly web design will help both designers and clients in the long run.
Web designers must embrace SEO
Web designers love websites that are beautiful, interactive and graphic-rich. They may spend hours to weeks developing a concept for a particular website. In spite of all these efforts, a website may still not receive the number of visitors or engagement it is deemed to attract. This is usually because web designers forget the fact that websites still need to be searched online, through search engines. Whether Google, Bing or Yahoo, people still use search engines to arrive at websites. For this reason alone, web designers should not shy away from SEO but instead embrace it just like they would embrace a new designing software program.
Here are some of the most important tips a web designer must know in order to ensure a webpage is SEO-friendly:
- Ensure that the design is link friendly. While visitors no longer need to be told ‘Click Here', it still is a good idea to highlight the links so that they stand out from plaint text. Headings fro links need to be keyword rich as well.
- Hashtags, which are like keywords but inspired by Twitter are very important in the world of SEO. Hashtags help readers and visitors to understand what content is all about and what a website is all about. Thus, incorporating hashtags within a webpage is a good idea.
- Flash can be avoided when possible too. When one really needs to use Flash, it needs to be ensured that an entire site is not built on a Flash webpage. Flash also should not be used for navigation.
- Ensure that keyword-stuffing and hiding links are avoided completely. Even when such a tactic is used to improve the appearance of a website, it may backfire very badly.
Design and search go hand-in-hand