User experience as the most important factor for a good ranking [SEO tip]

 

This saying by the Unilever media manager hits the spotlight on the relevance of the omnipresent search engine. If you want to position yourself in the best possible way on Google, you should regularly deal with the most important ranking factors in order to optimally align your SEO strategy.

For many, the Google algorithm is a book with seven seals, but it also clearly follows logical aspects and has a single goal: to offer the most suitable hits for the respective search query.

User experience – human first

As much traffic as possible, as many clicks as possible. These points are at the top of the list for many website operators when asked what they expect from an optimization of their portal. Various screws are then turned to satisfy Google’s cryptic algorithms, artificial intelligence and other digital mechanisms.

Many forget that while SEO is done via search engines, the focus is still on the user. Over the years, the priorities that Google considers as important criteria for the classification have changed again and again over the years.

Only those who ignore logic and clear common sense will experience really big surprises here. Because today the user and the best possible user experience are more in focus than ever before. This is what the search engines’ innovative analysis methods aim at.

UX as the most important factor?

A good SEO strategy should always consider all relevant areas in order to achieve the best results. So how can it be said that user experience has a special place here?

Let’s take a closer look at what is hidden behind this keyword: The common user usually prefers:

  • Pages that are visually appealing and on which they can find their way quickly and intuitively.
  • Pages that provide the right answer to a specific need – be it in the form of information, a product or a service.
  • If a search engine is used, it should deliver the best possible result for the individual query.

The term UX combines numerous important evaluation criteria, some of which are reflected in the known factors or which overlap here. That is why this point is so important for a successful SEO strategy.

Which points are now even more important?

Anyone who has neglected user behavior so far should take a closer look at the following criteria:

  • Mobile first: In the future, users will increasingly be using mobile devices on the Internet. Anyone who, as a site operator, does not make an effort to achieve a corresponding performance will in future be punished even more severely by Google with the so-called mobile first index.
  • Page Speed: The loading times are also one of the most important points in Google’s evaluation of the user-friendliness of a page.
  • Content: It is important to structure the content of a page in such a way that Google can link it as well as possible with the relevant search queries. Due to thematic relevance, the content portfolio should be set up in such a way that the page with the best profile qualifies for a search query.

EXTRA: Google Update: mobile friendly websites rank better!

EXTRA: Relevant content: The ranking criterion for Google

How can the user experience be improved? 3 to-dos

The bottom line is that in the future, even more attention should be paid to setting up the site and content as target-group-oriented and user-oriented as possible and making it a unique experience. This is how you set yourself apart from the competition. In addition, one side should not raise questions, but answer them. It should be immediately clear what awaits you or who is behind the portal.

1. Technology

OnPage optimization concerns technical aspects such as a clear structural structure, intuitive navigation, fast loading times, the best possible display (desktop and mobile) or the avoidance of duplicate content.

To do: Many points concern the programming and in order to improve the site it is necessary to permanently analyze the “performance” in relation to the specific Google requirements with special applications.

2. Content

Added value is a frequently mentioned catchphrase here. Instead of a boring company presentation, unique specialist and advice articles on industry-relevant topics can be more useful. High quality, unique and tailor-made for the respective target group – these criteria are among the most important when creating and optimizing content.

To do: For the best strategy, this means above all knowing your desired target group (s) exactly, putting yourself in their position and providing the most optimal content according to their wishes. This questionnaire helps:

  • Which forms of presentation address the target group best?
  • Which questions about the product could be answered?
  • Which expert knowledge could captivate the user?
  • What information could make a purchase decision easier?

3. Interaction

Google uses the individual signals of the user such as length of stay, bounce rate or which links are clicked.

To-do: Interaction continues to play a more important role. Therefore, the user should be given various options for this. Multimedia content, easy and clear navigation options or interactive elements such as call-to-action buttons or links to social media are examples of this.

The optimal strategy

In addition to the focus on the optimal user experience, other strong criteria should not be neglected. Some of them are rather abstract factors that are decisive for evaluating the quality of a website.

First and foremost, this also includes high-quality backlinks. They testify to a certain relevance of your own portal and your content. Internal links supplement the navigation and can lead the user from the info article to the desired product. There are various measures to expand and improve the link portfolio.

Another focus is on the keywords, which still play an important role. It is important to stay on the ball at all times, as they can also always change. In the future, they should be accommodated subtly with a certain variance in order to achieve a broader hit probability with the search engines. The expanded options for meta description, for example, now offer more space.

Same, same, but differentiated

Perhaps that best describes how SEO will develop in the future. With new mechanisms, Google tries to incorporate even more details into the evaluation for the ranking of search hits. It is unlikely that previously important factors will suddenly become completely irrelevant.

Nevertheless, the weighting of various criteria will always shift slightly and in order to find the optimal way, increasingly complex processes have to be taken into account. However, these processes can be planned well with minimal adjustments in a long-term SEO strategy.

 

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