web design affects seo and conversion

How Your Web Design Can Affect SEO

Keeping your website looking current is a necessity if you want to continue to attract visitors to your site and thus continuously improving your search rankings. Google wants to see that you are investing time in creating an informative and user-centered website.

When choosing which features you want on your site keep in mind that every web design feature has the potential to affect your search rankings; Especially if your site does not work properly on a mobile device.

A Mobile Responsive Website Has SEO Benefits

Google recognizes three different configurations for building mobile sites. Here’s a chart comparing the three methods:

SEO mobile responsive web design

If you’re trying to get good rankings in Google (and who isn’t) then you need to pay attention to what Google wants and  Google wants your site to be Mobile Responsive.

Having a “mobile version” of your site does not equate to it being “mobile responsive.” A responsive web design (RWD) means that your site’s pages will reformat themselves depending on which devices they are being displayed on.

A responsive site also means that you increase your chances of getting higher page rank because you have one website, one URL which is easier for Google to crawl and index. In addition, you also get to spread your keywords out over several pages — many pages if you also have a blog.

Another benefit of the responsive design is that you’re presenting all of the same content found on the desktop site to your mobile users, but in a functional way.

Gaining the Trust of Your Website Visitors

Perception is everything.

Your website is not your brand. It is, however, a major element of your brand and will often be your potential new clients/customers first impression of your business. Your website will be how people perceive you and your business.

In a study conducted by the Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab, nearly half (46.1%) of the participants said that the website’s design, including layout, typography, font size and color scheme, was the number one criterion for discerning the credibility of the presented material and the company presenting it.

Founder of User Interface Engineering and research expert Jared M. Spool claims “brands are perceptions” and “brand elements, such as names, logos, tag lines, trademarks, and packaging, are shortcuts to those perceptions.”

People are drawn towards brands they trust, which means that the design elements will directly affect your overall branding strategy.

Websites that provide a poor user experience (on both mobile and desktop) and are difficult to navigate will not encourage viewers to stay around and explore the rest of your site.

Your Words Also Matter

Web design and content go hand-in-hand. While your site design should be pleasing to the eye, mobile responsive and easy to navigate, your content is equally as important. A poorly designed website will drive away users just as much as having no content, or useless content. The wording you choose for your Call to Action button(s) is also important.

The below infographic designed by Killer Inforgraphics for ZippyCart shows how concrete and emotional statements work better than abstract and intellectual states in regards to conversion rates.

A concrete and emotional statement tells the reader exactly what your company is about while also telling how your service will help them in some way. Abstract and intellectual statements such as catchy phrases don’t provide any concrete proof of your statement.


Click to enlarge.

Sidebar: On the topic of web designs, one of my favorite websites (thus far this year) has all of the best design features imaginable, and the best over-all design, is Tesla’s. If you have buckets of money available for your website, this design would be the one to have! Here’s my favorite page on their website.