Web Design Mistakes that will Hurt Your SEO Performance

Web design is often trickier than it looks for a number of reasons. For starters, you need the site to be quick and snappy, especially with the audience’s attention span being as narrow as it is today. Of course, you will also want the site to offer good user experience. On top of that, the site needs to be designed correctly in order for it to perform well SEO-wise. To help you design a truly optimized site, here are some of the mistakes you definitely need to avoid.

Messy <head> Tags

Some designers and web developers focus so much on the content of the site, they forget to code the <head> part of the pages correctly. Yes, content is the foundation of every SEO campaign, but to be able to have search engine crawlers recognize your content you need to have a tidy and relevant set of tags on the <head> section.

Meta title and meta description are the two most important tags to have. Be sure to keep these tags relevant to the content you are displaying. You may also want to add Open Graph tags and additional elements to make your site more search engine-friendly.

Remove unnecessary tags from the <head> section. This will not only help improve your site’s SEO performance, but also its load speed. By moving load-blocking JavaScript to the bottom of the page, for instance, you can have your site loading several seconds faster.

Inconsistent Navigation

Another common mistake you should avoid when designing a site is inconsistent navigation. The best website design company will always start with navigation – or a sitemap – when designing a website. You should too.

Keep the navigation elements consistent across the site. If you are using a sidebar widget to display categories, for instance, make sure you show it consistently. Removing the sidebar widget on certain pages that displays your site’s content will make navigating through the site much more difficult for users.

Another good element to have is a footer menu. Link to certain pages should be added to the footer of the site. If you have a Privacy Policy page – which you should – and an About page, for instance, you can add links to these pages to the footer.

Incorrect Use of Heading Tags

When creating styles for your web page, make sure you can use the heading tags correctly. H1 should always be used for article titles and other important headings. You can then create suitable heading styles using the H2-H6 tags accordingly.

One of the most common mistakes designers make is using the H1 tag more than once on the same page. This will definitely hurt your site’s SEO performance. Make sure you use H2-H6 or other CSS elements to accentuate important parts of your site instead of using the H1 tag repeatedly.

It is also a mistake to use the Hx tag to simply style text inside a paragraph. Instead of taking this approach, it is much more effective to use <span> or other HTML tags for the purpose.