SEO Design Don\’ts

Design and SEO go hand in hand in terms of the success of your website. A poorly designed website will prevent visitors from returning to your website and secondly it will prevent your site from gaining higher page ranking in terms of search engine results pages. The following takes a look at the top design items to avoid for SEO purposes.

How does SEO Correlate to Design?
If the design of your website is poorly constructed, SEO will not help in optimizing its position on the web. This will then negatively impact your sites rankings as the search engines can not spider your pages. Do not let bad design choices dictate the success of your website, take a look at what to avoid when designing your website.

Design Items to Be Avoided

  • Do not use flash – search engines cannot read flash as effectively (if at all) as other standard programming
  • Do not launch your site on sites that allow spammers.
  • Ensure your navigation bar is in a logical location
  • Have a search facility located in a prominent place
  • Ensure your “contact us” appears an average of 5 times on your home page
  • Ensure the most prominent items appear in the “f” hotspot
  • Ensure that your home page has a minimum of 400 words on it
  • Ensure that your links are made up of your choice SEO keywords
  • Avoid presenting your content with JavaScript.
  • Keyword-rich, quality content will bring more traffic to your site. Therefore, do not duplicate your content.
  • Do not artificially separate the content within your sites.
  • Avoid constantly making minor changes to your content.
  • The design of your site should not contain any images inside text.
  • Do not omit text links and favour images.
  • Do not misspell the keywords or key phrases in the content of your site; it will not benefit you in terms of SEO.
  • In terms of optimizing your site, do not optimize more than 2-4 keywords and phrases.
  • Do not attempt to over use keywords in your sites articles or blogs, your content may be regarded as spam. SEO requires a limit of key word density within the content of your pages.
  • Your URL should not contain more than 10 words.
  • Your URL must be clean – if you don’t understand what is written there, the search engines won’t either
  • When designing your site do not utilize session IDs.
  • Try to get your website off link farms.
  • Do not create link pages or include broken links on your website.
  • Avoid using 302 redirects or Meta refresh tags to redirect traffic.
  • Do not under any circumstance get involved with violating copyright laws.
  • Do use robots.txt to ban large portions of your site.
  • Do not create boring or incorrect HTML’s.
  • Avoid using frames and flash splash pages on your website.
  • Splash pages are entry pages which contain a large amount of images and little text. After the animation on the splash page is complete, your visitor will then be directed to another page.

The process of SEO takes time, yet there is huge long term benefits. The design of your website determines the success of your site in terms of SEO. If a site is designed correctly and works well in terms of what is expected of a website, your site will rank favourably and you will ultimately reach your goal of increased traffic, leading to a higher return on investment.

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