As the battle to climb the search engine rankings rages on, marketers, business owners, and SEOs everywhere are always looking for better ways to position their websites. It’s nothing new, nor is it surprising, that user experience optimization is increasingly becoming an important element in the neverending quest to get on the first page.
But before we go further: What do we mean by user experience in the first place?
And so it follows that the practice of maximizing user experience is user experience optimization, or UEO.
So what does it mean for the future of search engine optimization? We have a few clues to draw on that could give us some ideas:
Broken links, 404 errors, thin content, and keyword stuffing are all a few examples of how some ranking factors that are bad for SEO are coincidentally also bad for UEO.
“Landing page experience” is one of the most important ranking factors for AdWords.
One of Google’s core principles is “Focus on the user and all else will follow.”
Google is making mobile-friendliness a ranking factor starting on April 21st.
In short, Google is incentivizing anyone who is trying to get clicks to optimize their website for the real humans who use it instead of the bots that crawl it.
But let’s get back to our original question. Because Google is encouraging sites to focus on UEO by indirectly making it a factor for better SEO, the future of SEO is that a major paradigm shift will change the way SEO is done. Search engine optimization will always be around, but the focus on keywords is changing more and more to a focus on how easy and helpful a site is to a user. Your site has to have an amazing user experience, but those users also have to be able to find it.
To make sure users discover your site and are left with a positive impression of its usefulness and functionality, try these tips for blending UEO and SEO into a perfect recipe for high-quality conversions:
Use keywords where they fit naturally in all website copy, meta descriptions, title tags, image alt tags, and URLs while also writing them to accurately portray what users will get when they click through.
Make what they want to find obvious on the page, whether it’s a clearly labeled menu with dropdowns or simply placing your contact information above the fold in large print.
Focus on making features easy and intuitive to find, learn, and use.