7 Costly Web Design Mistakes That May Hurt Your Ranking

7 Costly Web Design Mistakes That May Hurt Your Ranking

Let’s admit it. An eye-catching web design is vital for a website’s success. However, it can also be a curse when done incorrectly, as it can lead to the website being penalized by search engines and audiences.   

Don’t risk making these costly mistakes!  

Here are seven web design mistakes that may damage your SEO:   

1. Not Enough White Space  

Every element on a page must be placed against the white space so that your visitors can easily see it and read it. A cluttered website will give search engines a hard time and affect your rankings.  

Plan an optimal amount of white space for each page, especially the headings, lists, and lines of text. Smaller font sizes, bigger margins, and fewer breaks between paragraphs will also help you create a page with more whitespace.     

2. Too Many Flash Elements

Flash may be able to deliver exceptional quality, but that doesn’t mean you can use it just anywhere. Flash files should only be used on simple web pages like a gallery or contact page. Never use flash banners on your home page because flash content cannot be indexed by search engines.   

If you still want to use flash elements, make sure to have a text version of the file saved somewhere online in order for it to show up on search results pages (SERPs). More importantly, make sure the text version of your flash file is correctly linked to your site.    

 3. Incomplete Metadata

Not all elements on a page need metadata, but it is important to have metadata on every page that contains content and at least one link back to your website.   

Google uses meta tags as one of its ranking factors, so if you properly use them, you will definitely increase your rankings. Search engines can use meta tags to evaluate the page’s content, not for image dimensions but for how well the page loads.  

4. Common Keywords  

Never include common keywords in your title tag and meta description because these words are not keyword-rich enough to help you improve search engine rankings.   

In order to make your titles and descriptions better, use carefully chosen keywords that are unique and relevant to your website.  

Tools like Google Adwords and Google Trends will help you see which local searches are likely to be most popular in the future. You can also use keywords from your competitors’ websites to help you decide what keywords can work for your site.  

5. Improper Page Title Characters 

Repetition is a big no-no when it comes to title tags, as this can make search engines think that the page is spam or an advertisement only meant to make more money for the website owner.   

If you are using a descriptive and popular keyword like “cheap apartment rentals” in your page title, but you have used it too many times, it will not appear on SERPs because the search engines will think that there is an automated script running and that the page is not important.   

Instead of using common keywords in your title tag, you can also use phrases from your keywords or taglines to give the page more credibility. 

6. Over-Optimization  

Over-optimization is a common mistake that website owners make in order to increase their search engine rankings. Search engines can detect this kind of activity, and it can lead to your site being penalized.   

Over-optimization is when you include too many keywords on a page without giving it naturally readable content. For example, instead of writing “cheap apartment rentals,” write “cheap apartment rentals near me” or, even better, a phrase like “find cheap apartment rentals near me.  

7. Incorrect Crawl Settings 

Incorrect crawl settings can also affect your site’s rankings badly. You can check what the correct settings are for your web server by using Google’s Webmaster Tools, which will tell you what the search engines can see on your website and what they cannot see.   

Be sure to keep all of your keywords in the right categories and make sure that you add them correctly in the robots file as well as in sitemaps. XML.  

Your Key Takeaway

Remember that a website is a reflection of the business or brand. Design and SEO should be treated as one, but not to the point that it becomes an overkill.   

Web design is an investment for your business, so make sure you use the right tools, white space, and metadata. Avoid these costly mistakes so you can focus on improving your conversion rate and rankings instead. These mistakes are not only costly for your website but also for its visitors and search engine rankings. 

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