Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Why Site Structure Is Important?

Time and time again over the years, I have seen students take their established sites to entirely new levels of traffic, simply by making the right kind of adjustments to the way their sites were structured.

These days, everyone seems to think that SEO is all about getting links. Now I’m not saying that links aren’t important, but in most of these cases, they hadn’t even begun to work on link building.

Most of these increases in traffic have come from improvements we made in the structure of the web site itself - and this kind of result isn’t all that unusual. In fact, site structure is probably the most overlooked and misunderstood aspect of SEO.

While most of your competitors are still trying to use a “sledgehammer” approach, and overwhelming the search engines with massive quantities of inbound text links, you can gain a tremendous advantage by paying attention to how your site is linked together.

Link building certainly magnifies the benefit of a good site structure, but the reverse is also true: good site structure greatly amplifies the benefit of your investment in link building.

There are four primary goals in structuring, or restructuring, a web site:
  1. Improving the user experience is your first goal, because this leads to higher conversion rates, happy customers, etc. If I ever have to choose between creating a good user experience and an SEO objective, I will choose my site’s visitors every time.
  2. Improving the “crawlability” of the site and channeling “link juice” (PageRank at Google, other search engines have their own formulas) into the most important pages – the ones that you’re trying to get ranked in search results. One method we use for this is called dynamic linking.
  3. Increasing the ranking of individual web pages within the site, and “broadening the profile” of our most important pages. By using the “anchor text” of our own internal links, and adding the right links in strategic places, we can boost our own search engine rankings.
  4. Getting more pages into the search engines’ index, also known as “index penetration.” Every additional page that gets indexed adds to our ability to improve our rankings, and in fact makes it easier to increase index penetration.
It shouldn’t be terribly shocking that the four stages of the “site structure” step are mapped against these four goals.

No comments:

Post a Comment