Robots Are So Yesterday ... Understanding User Experience Optimization and Why Real People Matter
The first thing that typically comes to mind when people think of their website is SEO … how will my website rank on searches and on search engines? How will the *robots* crawl my site and for what reasons? SEO stands for ‘search engine optimization’ and ever since Google flipped the house upside down last year with their algorithm change we have all been left a little confused on what to do next!
I have never depended on SEO for anything … even during the Style Unveiled days of running a national wedding blog. I’m all about having a holistic approach and making sure that you have all the right support systems for ‘eyes to the prize’ << your work and your website. With social media, networking, Pinterest, search engines, word of mouth, being featured, and advertising there are so many ways you can be found! SEO is being replaced, that’s for sure … and the new guy goes by UEO - User Experience Optimization.
When my clients come to me for a website design the first thing I do is create a strategy that supports UEO. Google now cares very deeply (even for them!) that when people come to your website they are ENJOYING themselves … since Google can’t see your facial expressions they use a different gauge: how many times you click! To Google a click is a ‘Yay, I love this! Give me more!’ and so it’s vital to create page views for each visitor on your website.
Here are a few tips that will create a friendly visit on your website and give Google the ‘green light’ that people are loving the online experience you are giving them:
Mobile Friendliness: Google now requires that your website is mobile optimized and that means more to them then just ‘being able to see it on a phone or ipad’ … they actually have a test that you need to pass for them to agree that your website is mobile friendly: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/
Creating Page Views: Work with your website designer to entice visitors to click on buttons to bring them to new pages. The more page views you get per visitor the more important Google will believe your website to be and thus: up your ranking for searches.
Clear Focus: Make sure the focus of what your website is about is clear! Be unique and make sure that each time you blog or post a photo you are creating content that is supportive of that focus.
Current and Clean Design: Nothing will ruin your ranking more than a high bounce rate. If your website isn’t current and on trend then the chances that people will ‘click out’ upon their arrival are high. Make sure your website reflects the style that your target market likes to see! Keep the momentum going - and the bar is set by the types of blogs your target market client is frequenting.
Blog Using ‘Smart Links’: If you are blogging about one topic then lead them somewhere else at the end or in the middle. Create ‘calls to action’ when you blog and increase your SEO at the same time with ‘smart links’ … for instance: if you are blogging about a wedding you photographed then lead them to the engagement session of that couple with: you may also love seeing their engagement session at Laguna Beach << and then link engagement session at Laguna Beach to the older post.
It’s important to know that UEO is the support for SEO now. They work together. Remember that it’s not just about ‘robots’ - it’s about real visitors and their unique experiences on your website.