Good “usability” on your website will have a major impact on your visitor traffic. If visitors find your site easy to use they are more likely to stay and recommend to others, making your site more popular. This will ultimately result in higher rankings by the search engines.
While the design of the site is a critical aspect of this “usability” many people underestimate the influence their content layout via the CMS can have in impacting user experience.
- Make sure your site has plenty of written content. This is ultimately what the search engines use to assess your site. Many sites do not put enough content on their site.
- Break up long passages of text with headers as indicators of subject matter, as internet users “scan” content rather than reading word for word. The headers can help identify interesting chunks of content for them. Ironically a newspaper is a good example of how to do this.
- Make sure you check for grammatical and spelling errors as these errors will adversely affect how professional your website is perceived and they also tell the search engines that you are not considering your users as much as you should.
- Write in a natural style. If you overuse keywords and continue to mention them over and over again it will actually hurt you rankings.
- Images: Always use professional images if you can. For visitors the quality of your images directly correlates to the quality of your site. This is one of the biggest mistakes site owners make. Images can be bought very affordably from image banks such as iStock and BigStock.
- Identify your images with alternative text, the text that the search engines use to find out information about the image. The search engines cannot decipher images without this so they will ignore them. This is also very important from a usability point of view for visually impaired people who use screen readers.
- Internal Links: Make sure you use internal linking where possible. This helps visitors navigate more efficiently around your site and is also recommended by the search engines.