Are your efforts still on algorithms? Understand why you should focus on the user when thinking about SEO.
Google has been driving major changes on the internet for a while now, and one of them is the constant concern with the user. A movement that has also impacted the performance of major social networks such as Instagram, and even the young TikTok.
In recent years, algorithm changes have become increasingly frequent, and practices that were once effective have become obsolete, or even reasons for punishment when it comes to SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
Today, search engine optimization techniques bring a range of best practices, which should be observed for the SEO strategy to be, in fact, relevant.
A few years ago, it was very common for content creators to “trick” the algorithms and rank texts that were totally inadequate for a good user experience in the first results organically.
And what happened to the user being attracted to these pages? Shallow contents, with extremely repeated words, which had the sole objective of increasing traffic and climbing the rankings, even if, to do so, they had to compromise the reader’s experience. Practices that today are heavily penalized by Google.
Core Web Vitals and the page experience
More than just searched keywords, with the algorithm changes, Google makes it clear: who is behind a given search is a person, and to build optimized content, you need to focus on their experience.
Last quarter in 2021, Google announced a schedule of updates to the on-page experience for mobile devices. And in 2022, updates were also rolled out to desktop rankings. With this, metrics that measure experience such as LCP (Largest Contentful Paint), FID (First Input Delay) and CLC (Cumulative Layout Shift) must be worked on so that pages offer an experience that is ranked well by Google.
These three metrics are related to the user experience on the page, considering:
- The speed at which the largest element, whether an image or text, appears on the page;
- How long it takes the browser to respond to the user’s first interaction with the page;
- The stability of loading visual elements.
URL loading and interactions
Before the algorithm changes, Google focused on the page. But now, it is prioritizing the experience of those who browse. Thus, a URL with a better loading time and the fluidity of the page have a direct impact on the positioning of the site, since the interaction of the user with the result that is promised is of paramount importance in prioritizing this experience.
Good usability across diverse experiences
We don’t even need to talk about the long range of mobile devices available on the market. But does your site do the basics, which is to consider good usability for different screen types? One user can access a page from a laptop, while the second accesses it via iPhone and the third via Android.
UX Design practices should also be considered, since the same CTA can be clicked by mouse and finger by different people, and the final experience is also part of a good SEO strategy, which takes into account: good content practices, architecture, development and design.
Impact of social networks
Some time ago, we heard reports of how challenging it was to attract external links to pages, given that, they can increase relevancy, but if they are not part of a well thought out strategy, they can result in punishment.
With the growth of the social era and the prioritization of the user experience, social networks have a giant potential to contribute positively to the relevance of a page, increasing visibility, considering that the more links a page receives, the better ranked it will be. And this happens by building a relevant strategy that attracts the user, through content that interacts and makes sense to him.
SEO that prioritizes the target audience experience
As you have seen so far, an SEO strategy that makes sense, including to Google’s algorithms, is entirely planned with a focus on the user experience.
There are no shortcuts, secrets or tricks. There are numerous techniques, which like these above, should be inserted into your SEO planning, involving several areas that will no longer follow a ready-made script of content, creation or development, but rather a personalized path that puts the target audience as the protagonist of the navigation.
Need help prioritizing the user experience in your SEO strategy?
You can count on our multidisciplinary team, which closely follows Google’s algorithm changes and, when it comes to planning an SEO strategy, masters the technical part, but mainly, allocates efforts to focus on the best user experience.
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