Providing quality content is the key to success with Web users and search engines alike. But understanding the way content is structured and how a search engine might crawl it is also important to consider. Let’s explore some important tips on site architecture and SEO.
Organize Your Content in the Planning Stage
Sometimes the aesthetics of a new website can be intoxicating. But ultimately it’s the content that will attract, retain, and convert visitors. In the early stages of planning for a new website, plan what pages, landing pages, and specific content you’ll want to highlight. By starting this off early, you’ll find that the answering questions about your content strategy may help make design decisions a little easier. Consider how similar pages should be grouped, and how navigation will allow users to drill down into sub-pages.
Utilize Bolding for Emphasis
Bolding certain words within content can help emphasis certain parts of text as users skim through a page. Additionally, bolding can be helpful for SEO as it alerts search engines to important topics and keywords. However, avoid bolding too much – if everything is bold, then nothing is important!
Isolate Flash Whenever Possible
Although Flash is not generally “SEO-friendly,” that’s not to say it has to be avoided at all costs if you intended to be successful in the SERPs. Many high-ranking automotive websites use ample Flash. The key to succeed with heavy use of Flash, scripts, and/or images is to balance it out with rich text content that can be easily read by browsers, users, and search engine crawlers. Additionally, using alt attributes to describe Flash and image content can still be helpful in telling search engines what the content is all about.
Avoid Duplicate Content Like the Plague
Duplicate content has never and will never be a good thing when it comes to SEO. Stay away from providing duplicated, repeating, or redundant content across multiple pages. Duplicate content is typically identified when search engines index a given page, and redundancies are eliminated from the index at some point or another. Just don’t do it!
Embrace Header Tags
Once you have a nice page of text to put on your site, you’re not quite done. Organizing your content is also important for a couple reasons. Breaking up a page with H1 or H2 header tags can make the content more readable, since more readers on the Web are likely to skim.These tags can also help search engines understand the main themes of the page, thus helping in terms of SEO if keywords are present.
Unique Pages With a Call to Action
Each page should satisfy some purpose. Of course avoiding duplicate content is one way to have each page satisfy a specific objective. But pages should also educate or motivate readers.
Maintain Transparency at All Times
Hidden text or links on your website is always an SEO no-no. Sometimes the decisions to hide text or links may not be malicious, but trying to hide content from users in an attempt to appease the search engines will get you nowhere fast!