The “17 Ways To Boost Web Traffic” article that we are giving away this month has some good advice for getting more visitors to your website. The question I have been pondering lately is whether or not good design can increase your traffic. The conclusion I have come to is yes and no.
No, Google doesn’t care what your site looks like. However, there are things that a good designer will do when building your site that can affect your traffic. Here are 3 things you may not be aware of that a good website designer will do that can directly affect your website traffic:
1. Write clean markup
The code (markup) that exists “under the hood” of your website is what Google sees when it looks at your website. There are countless ways to write code that will result in a page that looks identical from your browser. Not all methods of code writing are equal in the eyes of Google, however. In general a good designer will write code that is short, concise, and organized. This helps Google know what your page is about and makes the process of indexing your page easier on the Google robot. And pleasing Google is a good start towards attracting website visitors.
2. Use CSS
Without getting too technical, CSS (or stylesheets) have become the industry standard for assigning a design to a website. The important thing you need to know is that css separates the content of your site from the design of your site. This results in web pages that are primed for Google.
3. Take Usability Seriously
When you are creating a website worthy of traffic you need to treat your visitors well. That’s called usability. A good designer will make it easy to use your site. Unnecessary clicks will be reduced. Navigation will be clear and friendly. Content will be organized and straightforward. When your site is easy to use people will be encouraged to return.
These are just three things that a designer considers when designing a website. While designers should be aware of how their design decisions will affect your web traffic, sadly this isn’t always the case. Some designers are more concerned with padding their portfolio than creating effective websites. Use the three items above as a way to evaluate your current designer. If he/she tries to downplay the importance of these things it may be a clue that they don’t take your project as seriously as they should. And as always give us a call if you want some more ideas about how to drive traffic to your site.