How Can SEO Shape A Powerful UX Strategy

Did you know that the optimization of a website for search engines comes hand-by-hand with user experience on the website? SEO and user experience are two different notions but they are interrelated even more than you can imagine.

UX affects SEO in the same way as SEO user experience, with the same degree of impact. That is why you should always keep this in mind when crafting your SEO strategy and user experience design templates.

User satisfaction and experience of the website highly depend on SEO-related factors. Proper website structure, page loading parameters, responsive design, and many other criteria driven by SEO parameters could shape a powerful UX strategy.

If you want to get exactly how SEO and user experience design correlate, then this article would guide you through this. You will learn how to benefit from SEO in user experience and the contrary.

SEO and user experience power

Before getting into detail on how SEO and user experience design collaborate, let’s explore each term one by one. In particular, we will first talk more about the SEO basics and purposes, and then switch to the user experience role for website management.

SEO

Keyword research, content strategy, sitemap optimization, gaining backlinks, social networks, and web design are the key SEO components. All of these tend to increase website visibility and appear very effective when acting altogether. The tangible effect in higher ranking positions appears when all the components of SEO come together.

SEO and user experience power

As we are aimed to define how SEO shapes a powerful UX strategy and user impressions, we will focus on certain SEO components. Thus we will look closer at web design and the importance of tuning the technical characteristics of a website when referring to SEO user experience boost.

User experience

When mentioning user experience, webmasters usually mean the user’s journey and impressions on a website. This is particularly done with the help of visual elements which make a part of the website design.

How are SEO and user experience interrelated?

Improved SEO and user experience are possible when both these components interact together. From the definition of each term, we see that they not only correlate but have the components in common. The visual representation and navigation, text quality and organization, page load speed, and mobile friendliness are among the most critical points to review. All these aspects would be discussed in the next section of this article.

Even having much in common, SEO approaches are different from those of the UX strategy because of their diverse nature. Search engine optimization heavily relies on backlinking and internal link building for the sake of increasing website visibility. This usually does not have any relation to user experience on the website.

Another aspect of SEO that refers only to optimization is the proper choice of keywords. Modern SEO tools allow determining which keywords have high ranking potential and thus could be used in the SEO strategy. Keyword selection does not have a direct impact on UX strategy, though it indirectly impacts page structure and text flow on a web page.

How SEO affects UX?

Let’s analyze the impact of SEO efforts on user experience on the website based on a range of criteria. Each of these components highlights the importance and role of SEO in crafting a proper UX strategy.

Website navigation

Being well-designed and visually attractive is not everything that user experience design takes care of. The website's navigability is as important as everything else present on it. Make sure users can easily find anything on the website either via the menu or via the search bar.

Website navigation

The navigation structure somehow relates to the SEO specialists’ work because sitemaps are based on it. When a sitemap is clear, it means search engines will better understand and utilize it for user search requests.

In fact, such files as XML sitemap appear critical not only for user experience strategy but for the outcome of SEO efforts as well. Such a sitemap appears to be a great helper for Google in analyzing your website structure. This is critical for search engines to understand your website structure and how its pages are interrelated.

Text quality and organization

SEO deals with keyword research and those key phrases are later used for article creation for the website. Organizing text properly based on the given keywords is a clue to the success of an SEO content strategy. Making such textual information also appealing to users should not be left behind but properly elaborated on.

Even when you have excellent information on your website but it is difficult to read, this would mean the collapse of a UX strategy. Structuring the text in paragraphs and choosing the right font and color makes much sense in fact. The proper choice of those parameters determines how users evaluate and react to the presented content. 

Load speed

According to multiple recent research studies, the users wait 2-3 seconds maximum for the page to load. If it takes longer to load a page after jumping to it from Google search results, a user is very likely to bounce out of it. This has a high impact on SEO optimization efforts due to high bounce rates which Google is critical about. That is why the user experience design takes care of that factor by making sure that a page won’t take long to load.

Mobile-friendliness

Designing a website for smartphones and tablets is a priority now because most people use mobile devices for navigating the internet. Being mobile-friendly is a fundamental requirement for any website - it is the point where user experience design plays a crucial role in SEO.

Most content management and website building tools allow you to check whether a website appears mobile-friendly. If the web pages display correctly on a smartphone screen, users will keep navigating the website. Otherwise, those tools will provide you with the option to adjust your website for mobile devices to be trendy.

Blog writing

You might already know that blogging is a great and powerful tool to boost your SEO efforts. Blog articles implement many different keywords that allow more people on the web to discover your content. At the same time, blogging gives much freedom to user experience specialists to create graphic content for blog articles.

When photos, images, infographics, charts, schemes, and other similar elements are embedded in a blog article, both SEO and user experience obtain additional benefits. SEO is boosted through alt text addition to such graphical elements. User experience is enhanced because graphic representation makes the information perception easier and more entertaining.

Best practices for using SEO to improve user experience

The enhanced SEO and user experience come from the interaction of teams that deal with each of these matters. Webmasters, SEO specialists, link-building professionals, and UX designers should collaborate for the sake of obtaining a common vision of things.

The actions of these professionals should be correlated through detailed plans for improved SEO and user experience. Check the Increasily article for tips on how SEO and UX design teams come along for achieving high website rankings and better user experience.

Below you will find several practices that mostly relate to the UX designer’s work. They greatly influence the website’s SEO and overall website rankings.

Website appearance

Before planning your website structure, see examples of other websites with high ergonomics criteria. Those are the websites that can boast high user experience and satisfaction rates. Designing and structuring your website like that makes a good foundation for decent user experience and SEO results.

Website appearance

The next step in planning the website appearance is designing the menu. Make sure that the navigation bar has the most critical and necessary information that most users would be interested in. Including all the website pages is not necessary on the menu. You should rather implement a search bar so that users can find what they need.

Consistent branding

Improved SEO and user experience are granted due to the utilization of the same brand colors across different online platforms. This is important because users will recognize your company on social media, websites, and other instances easily. Such a factor has a great impact on user experience and user satisfaction.

Compress media files

This component is a part of the technical SEO but it makes much sense for user experience. As a rule, original media files are of large size, however, image or video compression must be used to speed up the page load. Select lossy or lossless compression methods that would grant a decent compression rate and high quality of compressed media files that would be positively perceived by a human eye.

How to measure the impact of SEO on UX?

While we have already explored that SEO has an incredible impact on user experience, let’s define parameters that help to measure to which extent SEO impacts UX strategy. We should also specify that those indices do not exclusively depend on user experience.

Bounce Rate. Whether a user lands on your page from search engine results or follows a link from social media, the bounce rate is calculated in any case. This parameter defines the percentage of users who left the web page just after landing on it (without navigating any other web pages).

If the bounce rate is too high (more than 66%), then you need to pay attention to user experience and define how it could be improved. Make a survey, ask design professionals for help, and take any other actions that would ensure your website visitors feel more comfortable.

Time-on-Page. This parameter usually depends on the design quality, website appearance on various devices, quality of content, page load speed, and other technical characteristics. In any case, if the time-on-page indicator appears too low, it means that users might not feel cozy on your website, so user experience strategy should be investigated.

Conclusion

User experience is a very complex notion that refers to multiple aspects of the website. If you want to improve user experience, you should definitely implement SEO practices for that.

Even though SEO and UX design are different approaches to website enhancement, they have many points of contact. Thus, a properly tuned SEO strategy has immense potential for user experience. Optimizing a website for mobile, structuring the text properly, tuning technical parameters and other approaches used in SEO determine the success of UX strategy as well.

About the Author Peter K.

Peter K. is an experienced digital marketer with a decade of expertise in driving business growth through innovative strategies. His data-driven approach and deep understanding of SEO, PPC, social media, and content marketing have propelled brands to new heights. With a client-centric mindset, Peter builds strong relationships and aligns strategies with business goals. A sought-after thought leader and speaker, his insights have helped professionals navigate the digital landscape. Trust Peter to elevate your brand and achieve success in the digital era.

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