Implement seo during wireframe phrase helps to increase user experience

The easiest time to address a problem with any system is in the early stages of setting it up, and this is why website operators

who are concerned about dealing with search engine optimization (SEO) and user experience (UX) see the wireframe phase as critical. During the wireframe period, a site may not be much more than a rough outline of the navigational features, key functions and specific types of content. In fact, some pages may be nothing more than lorem ipsum text. You’ll only have a few pages to work with at this point, and that ensures that you can go through them with a fine-tooth comb to see what is or isn’t working properly.

By intervening at this stage, rather than trying to wrangle problems after a site has gone into production, you can see that your SEO goals are achieved while also providing an excellent user experience. Here are 6 factors to look for as you attempt to iron out problems while wireframing a website.

1. HTML Elements

Everything that appears on a web page has some type of impact on SEO and UX. You want to see that all HTML elements on all pages are being properly and comfortably displayed for readers. You also want to verify that appropriate elements are being used to send the right signals to the search engine bots that’ll be indexing your site when it’s in the hundreds or thousands of pages.

You’ll need to keep an eye on a handful of elements that are critical to SEO and web page readability. These are HTML tags like TITLE, H1, H2, and H3. By putting relevant content into those tags, you can quickly signal the topicality of a page to the search bots. They also serve the benefit of making content more readable, since header tags can:

  • Break up walls of texts.
  • Help users who left an article jump back in.
  • Make pages more scannable.
  • Allow readers to quickly parse what’s important to them.

The use of other HTML elements, particularly internal and external links, can also have both SEO and UX benefits. Users gain from competently designed links because they add value. Search engines can use them to maps your site and identify valuable pages. You can also utilize SEO plugins to ensure that ALT elements of those links add value.

2. Page Load Times

One case where Google’s guidelines for SEO work come into near perfect alignment with their guidelines for UX is the time a page takes to load. Sites that load quickly are typically favored in search engine results pages (SERPs). A speedy site also adds to the overall user experience. This can keep visitors on your pages longer, a factor that adds value to the SEO side of the equation, as Google uses time-on-site as one of the criteria for search ranking.

3. Clean Navigation

It’s fairly easy to understand how a solidly and concisely constructed navigational system matters in UX, but it also counts for a lot in SEO. Sitelinks are a type of sublink that’s often displayed in SERPs. A poorly constructed site will only appear as a single link when someone searches for a topic on Google. One with quality navigation, however, will be displayed with links to internal pages, such as the About and Contact pages for the website. This can ensure that your website takes up significantly more visual real estate on any given SERP, leading to a likely increase in searchers clicking through.

You should make a point during the wireframe stage to think about how the key pages on your site are included in above-the-fold navigation elements. If there’s a topic you’ve made a clear goal to target, you might want to find a way to incorporate into the core navigation structure of your site. This is a lot easier to accomplish early on since Google is less likely to recognize later navigation changes as relevant to SEO.

A strong page hierarchy will also make the process of crawling your site simpler for the search engines. For example, Googlebot will be able to spot your site’s blog in the top-level navigation bar for your site. This will allow it to get to the blog and recursively find all your posts. The user experience is enhanced because folks are more likely to come to an article straight into your site from Google, so they find what they’re looking for faster.

4. Mobile-Ready

Google in recent years has been pushing websites to become more mobile-friendly. This is a process of designing a site to display properly on a wide range of smaller devices, particularly smartphones, and tablets. There are a couple of ways to accomplish this, including using a responsive design and building a mobile-only website. Responsive design is considered the preferred approach since it allows you to serve both mobile and desktop content from the same URL.

Google makes a point of not send searchers to pages that won’t look good on their devices. With more than half of web searches now taking place on mobile platforms, that’s a huge audience to leave behind. The UX benefits of making a website look good on all devices should be obvious. Because responsive design work can be very tricky, this is something that needs to be addressed with high attention to detail during the wireframing process. Similar problems with using a separate mobile-only site also make the wireframe stage the right time to tackle this task.

5. Avoiding Repeated Content

Many types of CMS and blogging systems may accidentally duplicate content on your site. This can incur penalties from Google, so you want to avoid this, if at all possible. During the wireframing process, you can add some content to your database and see whether duplicates are appearing.

On the UX end, duplicate content can simply be frustrating. For example, a site with a page recommendation system might have a link to a version of the page the viewer is already on. Finding the same content after a click may drive users straight from your website.

6. Plugins and Scripts

Most sites use a lot of different components to deliver content, provide SEO-friendly HTML elements and develop analytics. The wireframing stage is absolutely the time to straighten issues with these out. A buggy piece of JavaScript, for example, is easier to track down while doing a wireframe. If it needs to be ripped out completely, you’ll have less trouble doing this in the pre-production stage than you will with a live site.

Problems with plugins have a tendency to compound over time. An SEO plugin that seems to not cause too bad a performance hit when you’re serving pages to 100 users an hour might be a disaster when you’re serving pages to 1,000 users a second. You should do early testing and try to project how problems like these will scale. The search engines will reward you, and users will appreciate the speedier site.

 

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