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When it comes to refining their websites, many small business owners are at a loss about what aspects they need to focus on. After all, compared to the early days of the internet, search engines are evaluating sites using a much wider spectrum of factors. And so are your visitors!
However, as discussed in a previous post, some things haven’t changed. Namely, quality content is still king, and accessibility and appropriate keyword usage continue to be important.
While it’s best to scrutinize your business website via a professional analysis, it is useful to know that top ranked websites also possess these two key traits.
Good Overall Layout
Related to user accessibility, most optimized websites tend to have a stellar overall layout. Sometimes called the architecture of your site, this concept encompasses both what’s visible on your website’s surface and its underlying structural format.
Specifically, the surface layout should be organized, easy to navigate, and visually appealing. After all, no visitor wants to dig through a cluttered website to find the information they are looking for.
Furthermore, avoid creating a site that is inconsistent or requires visitors to scroll forever. Instead, aim for a professional look that has logical link usage.
In terms of the underlying architecture, how your website code and on-page factors are configured should also follow the same basic rules. To be exact, whether it’s the format of your HTML code or your Meta tags, your site should be free of clutter and perform well.
For example, a website with good URL structure is not only easy for search engine crawlers to navigate, but also contains keywords that clarify what that page is about.
Engaging and Share-able
Closely related to quality content, many top websites also show a correlation between their user signals and their search engine ranking.
Specifically, websites that enjoy high rankings tend to also have low bounce rates, high click through rates, and visitors that spend longer amounts of time on their webpage.
Why is that? Because they have great content that is either educational, entertaining or both.
From an SEO standpoint, having these measurable user signals is an expected trait. After all, if your business website provides content that visitors want, the more likely they are to click through and view more pages on your site rather than navigating back to the search results or off to another website.
In addition, online searchers that find information that is appealing to them will not only spend more time reading it on your website, but will also want to share it with their friends and associates. It is important that your website is built to be shared. So make it easy for them.
This may sound like common sense; however, too many small business owners prevent visitors from easily passing along what they find. Unfortunately, no matter how good your content is, this only hinders a business’s visibility and credibility to potential customers.
Regardless of the platform your site is built on, there are numerous options available for adding social sharing buttons to each and every page and blog post.
Look at the bottom of this post and you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about. There are buttons for each of the top 5 social media sites and Buffer. And if a post on our site helped you in some way we would really appreciate it if you would share it on your favorite social media sites.
Whether it’s by including ways to share to social media networks, links to your business blog, or featuring customer reviews, make sure you encourage and facilitate sharing as much as possible.
To your success!