How to Win at SEO Through Great UX Today & Beyond

A decade ago, UX and SEO teams were always fighting one another, because their objectives weren’t aligned. UX teams were really focusing on users – on providing them a great experience and helping them achieve their goals as effectively as possible. Unfortunately, what was great from a UX point of view wasn’t cutting it back then from an SEO POINT of view. SEO teams wanted to be able to place big blocks of content above the fold. Why?  Because that’s what search engines valued. That’s what made pages more relevant. SEO teams also wanted massive footer navigation and tag clouds because that helped the crawling and indexing process. SEO teams would also riddle sites with content matching specific search queries that communicated the exact same message as the “money pages.” But hey, you could optimize those pages for all the other related queries, so you needed to write extra content. All that extra content bloated sites, made their content no longer manageable, and over time led to these pages becoming a form of duplicate content – which was subsequently pruned. Slowly but surely, search engines have changed the way they make sense of content. That meant that these “SEO hacks” were no longer needed. And in fact, they were hurting SEO performance rather than helping it. This is a good thing – it means that UX and SEO teams can now work together on an integrated approach that makes sense for both users and search engines. This is how you win at SEO today and beyond. So how do you go about this?  What Do Users Really Want? Every user has a question and is seeking a satisfying answer. They want it fast, on a site that’s easy to use. You can break this down into: · Creating satisfying answers and getting them to rank. · Winning the click with your snippets. · Satisfying the question with a fast and easy to use the site. In this article, we’ll focus on the first step – creating those satisfying answers – because a lot of the updates that Google has rolled out over  the last two years have refined what sort of content (and content types) makes for satisfying answers.

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