What results do the search engines favour? Ah, the golden question? Or is it? Nope, not really. SEO is not the dark art it once was – the answer is simple; the search engines favour the most relevant results and these days there are few ways to “trick” them. The cream rises to the top more often than it ever has (and before anyone says anything, there are of course always exceptions).
Search engines aren’t just looking for relevant content, they’re looking for ease of access to that content. What’s good for consumers is good for organic search presence – so if your site is easy to use, this should be reflected in your results.
UX (user experience) is essentially a facet of SEO, or at least it should be to get the results you’re no doubt looking for. From the very start we have always advised our clients of the importance of user experience and our initial proposals/review always include UX considerations/suggestions where necessary.
However, while the answer the simple, its execution isn’t always so easy, especially if you’re looking to “correct” an existing site rather than build one from scratch. Brands often sacrifice user journey for a nice aesthetic, but as much as pictures speak a thousand words, often the actual words will perform much more positively – “call now”, “add to basket”, etc.
Often, the major problem is that the user experience is too linear and only considers a journey that starts from the homepage. However, what if the user lands on a page other than the homepage (which less than 50% will)? Does the journey make sense?
A lack of consideration of UX at different entry points can cause users to leave the site and look elsewhere. Imagine if a user landed on an inner page and was greeted with tabbed content, where the information they’re looking for is present but hard to find. Similarly, extremely long scrolling pages with no clear way to quickly and easily locate the content they’d searched for, will cause visitors to lose patience with a site very quickly.
User signals will only feature more prominently in search and bad UX could be preventing you achieve the search engine results your site deserves. If you’d like a full site review or know anyone that would, get them to give us a shout – 0161 941 3469.