According to research, someone visiting your site will make a subliminal judgment about if they like or dislike your page within one-twentieth of a second. This means you have to get it right.
There is a wide array of factors that can affect how your site ranks in Google, along with other search engines. Proper title tags, quality content, meta descriptions, social media posts and more all affect your site visibility, organic search traffic, and rankings.
However, there are several other less objectively factors to measure that may influence if Google sees your site as authoritative. These are called user experience factors, which impact – you guessed it – user experience. Keep reading to find out what these crucial factors are.
1. Site Speed
While site speed isn’t going to significantly impact your search visibility, it is a crucial factor that is worth optimizing. The speed your page loads plays a huge role in if visitors are satisfied with their results – as a result, Google takes it seriously.
Since most searches are now one on mobile devices, the speed of your site is even more important – after all, mobile devices are much slower than desktop computers. This means every second count.
Take some time to clean up your site regularly and run speed tests to make sure nothing interferes with your load times. It’s also a good idea to use a caching plugin, to ensure your hosting is in order, to delete any unused or old images or drafts, and to compress the images to take up less space.
2. Site Security
The security of your site is also a crucial factor. When most people think of security they imagine e-commerce platforms, which collect payment and credit card information. However, this isn’t the only type of site that requires security.
In fact, today, Google is giving small ranking boosts to sites that invest in SSL encryption, which is shown with the "S" in the "https" URL. If you want superior visibility for your site, then make this change – it will be worth it.
3. Intuitive Navigation
Your site navigation also matters. Each page on your website needs to be accessible through a well-organized system of menus and submenus.
In your primary navigation, you need four to six main categories, which includes a contact page, so your customers can get in touch.
Google analyzes your site’s organization and tracks your user activity to figure out if your site is easy to use. The easier your site can be navigated, the better!
4. Internal Linking
Google believes the fewer numbers of clicks it takes to actually arrive on a page of your site – the better. If you have pages that need over three clicks to get to it, it may result in a strike against overall user experience. Or it may be designated that the page isn’t important to you, so it should not be shown in search results.
That’s because users need intuitive navigation and freedom to have a great experience – Google is committed to those. The best way to make sure your site is properly interlinked is by using internal links in your own pages and articles.
5. Mobile Optimization
This is also thought of as part of the overall user experience. It’s a bare minimum requirement that your site needs to have this if you want any chance of ranking well in mobile searches.
Since searching via mobile is so important, Google has made it mandatory that you have a mobile-friendly site. If you don’t have a mobile-friendly site, now is the time to get one.
It’s crucial that you make the user experience a top priority. This will help you rank better in Google, and improve customer satisfaction.