In 2022, building an SEO-friendly website should be relatively easy.
The majority of popular website CMS systems are either SEO-friendly off-the-shelf or can be relatively easily configured to be SEO-friendly.
In this article, we look at what you need to know to ensure your next website is an SEO powerhouse.
We feel confident that if you read this article you will have a good idea of how to approach building an SEO-friendly website. However, if you need some help or would rather just talk to a human about your objectives then by all means drop a comment below or get in touch.
An SEO-friendly website is a site that Google can understand.
There are various steps here, but the main ones would be:
Technical SEO plays a part here in that the site has to follow best practices, but in 2022 most common small business website platforms should have reasonable technical SEO off-the-shelf. Typically, you can then improve the technical SEO with plugins for your chosen platform.
For structure, the filing cabinet analogy is useful:
This is a simple way to think about things, but if you can clearly describe your business like this then mapping this out in an SEO-friendly way gets much easier.
If Google then crawls your site and infers meaning from the structure then you are well on your way.
If your site then has the basic SEO elements optimised:
Technical SEO features that are useful include:
If you have all the above then you will have a site that is technically SEO-friendly.
You will, of course, have to then optimise the site to ensure that everything is well-structured and well-optimised, but the foundational pieces should be in place.
In most cases, you will not build your own site.
So, you want to work with a web design company that understands digital marketing and SEO.
You want a partner that understands SEO-friendly web design so they can help structure a site that is optimised around your goals.
Here you are looking for a company that can:
You are looking for a web developer that is not only technically astute with SEO and web design, but one that can develop a clear map of your business and then use this to structure your website.
You will then have a site that clearly maps your business to search and the digital marketing landscape.
This one should be easier to answer.
There is no shortage of compelling SEO statistics out there.
The nutshell here though is this:
If you are not visible on the major search engines, you are missing out on the majority of business opportunities out there.
You are making life easier for your competitors and basically treading water until the time when you are muscled out of business by the companies that took SEO seriously and built an SEO-friendly website.
That may sound a little brutal but tough love is warranted sometimes.
Ignore SEO at your peril.
SEO can be complicated.
Fortunately though, in 2022, many of the most popular website platforms out there are SEO-friendly.
Building your site using an SEO-friendly platform ensures you have a good starting point for your SEO.
Content management systems like WordPress or cloud systems like Shopify are SEO-friendly off-the-shelf.
These platforms, particularly WordPress, are further improved by many free SEO plugins that simplify optimisation.
Even more technical platforms, like Magento 2.0, are supported by SEO plugins to ensure the sites are technically well-optimised.
This is a little tougher to answer and it largely depends upon your unique situation.
It is important to choose a platform that supports your business and for that platform to be SEO-friendly.
To simplify this, I will grade the most popular CMS systems by how SEO-friendly they are.
* bespoke sites can be SEO-friendly, but the potential for problems is way higher and the developer will need to be up to speed with SEO best practices for developers (link below).
Websites are expensive to do well.
They take time, money, and effort, also known as blood, sweat, and tears.
It then never fails to amaze me that after investing all of these resources, businesses scrimp on web hosting.
Your super-optimised site will fall flat if it is running on slow, insecure web hosting.
We covered this in more detail here: How Important Is Web Hosting For SEO?
In a nutshell, though – good hosting can give you an SEO competitive advantage.
Fast, secure sites are a great user experience – this is good SEO.
Building an SEO-friendly website has a few moving parts.
You need to start with a platform that is technically SEO-friendly and able to be well-optimised – WordPress, Shopify, etc.
You then need to create a map of your business and structure the pages on your site in a way that clearly represents your business.
You then need to optimise the basic SEO page elements on the site (page titles, meta descriptions, H1 tags, etc).
You need to ensure your copy is well-written and sensibly optimised so it will convert clicks to customers.
Finally, use high-quality hosting as this can be a competitive difference-maker.
How SEO-friendly is your website?
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References and further reading