Creating a website for your business is an essential element for any legitimate business in our day and age. For most of your clients, it will be the first interaction and impression they will have of your business. This is why, in most cases, people get carried away with the visual and aesthetic elements of the site.
While you would like for your site to be visually appealing, you don’t want to fall into the trap of creating a site that is neither user or search engine-friendly.
Having a great SEO Site Structure will assist in making sure that users can navigate through your site and find what they need, seamlessly. It will also assist Search Engines to crawl, understand and index your website.
What is Site Structure?
Site structure refers to the way in which content is structured on a website, how they are labeled and how the pages are linked to each other. This would typically be in a page hierarchy format, consisting of the home page at the very top, followed by category pages and then subcategory pages.
Why is a good SEO Site Structure important?
Having a good SEO Website Architecture is important for several reasons. As your site grows, it will become more and more clustered.
Having a well-implemented site structure will ensure that your visitors have a good user experience (and journey) while navigating your website, which indirectly impacts your SEO efforts and leads to conversions.
Also, the average time spent on site will increase because users will be engaging more and if they can navigate with ease, this will decrease your bounce rate as well. Search engines love to see platforms that perform well, and will thus rank your pages higher and higher.
A good site structure will also help and allow search engine spiders to find and index all of the pages on your website. If any of your pages are not linked to others on the site, crawlers will have difficulty finding and indexing those pages.
The use of a search engine-friendly website structure will also assist with your URL structures. You will be able to categorise your URLs, which will help search engines understand the relationship between your pages.
This will in turn help search engines understand the context of your pages, which pages are more relevant to search queries, as well as which pages are of higher importance.
If your pages are categorised and structured correctly, it will be easy to distribute link equity across your site. Passing link authority from higher-performing pages will increase authority on poorer-performing pages.
New Content Generation
Making use of an optimized website structure will also assist you with loading new content to your site and minimizes the guesswork. If you are adding new content to your site and have already structured it, you will know exactly where to add your content or pages in a way that makes sense.
How to set up the structure of your website?
What are the things you need to do to improve your site’s structure? Here are a few SEO Site Structure best practices:
For An Existing Website
Conduct a content audit. This will help you identify which pages are performing well as well as which keywords you are currently ranking for. Once you have collected all this data, you can go ahead and evaluate your category structure and update where necessary.
Removing old and irrelevant content on your website will also assist with your site structure optimisation. You could redirect old, irrelevant but authoritative pages to your more up-to-date and/or optimised pages.
Run an internal linking audit and make updates where necessary. Linking to your more relevant pages will signal to users and search engines which content is of higher priority. If for example, you are running an eCommerce site, you want to link to your product pages as much as possible. If you are focusing solely on blogging, you will want to indicate which articles are best and more complete.
For A New Website / Website Relaunch
If you are creating a new website, identify and plan a good page hierarchy and SEO site structure from the get-go. Best practice is to have a flat site structure with at most 3-4 steps from the home page. A shallow website architecture means that link authority flows from pages that tend to get a lot of backlinks to pages that you want to rank.
Identify a solid URL structure that follows your navigation hierarchy and stick to it. Here is an example of an SEO Optimised website URL:
It is best practice to also identify and structure the article or blog section of your site in a similar fashion. You can use an application like gloomaps to map this out.
Make sure to include a header on your website that lists and links to your main category pages. Take special care to also label these links correctly. Read more for more tips on preparing for a site relaunch.
Generate a Sitemap. XML sitemaps help search engines get a better understanding of what you would like to index on your site. If your site has a lot of pages and a deep structure, a sitemap makes it easier for a search bot to navigate the site without missing any important pages.
The anatomy of a Great SEO Website Structure is very simple but often gets lost in the mix of everything that keeps a website working. Follow these best practices for SEO site architecture and you will be well on your way to achieving the results you seek.
Algorithm Agency offers comprehensive SEO strategy and implementation services that will ensure your website performs at its best.
Author : Khethinkosi Mthimkhulu