With all love for technical gadgets - they are only a means to an end in search engine optimization. Because the user experience must always be in the foreground and this does not work without a deep psychological understanding of the users' needs.
To focus on the user when optimizing a website is so important because Google is now virtually the "user no. 1". While a few years ago a distinction was made between reader-friendly and search engine-friendly content, Google has now refined its algorithms to such an extent that the differences are hardly noticeable. What users like, Google likes. But what do users really want?
A smooth process is the basis of a good user experience
We all use the Internet today like a gigantic library with an attached shopping center. We use the digital world to find solutions to problems, to get practical help and find answers to questions. These answers can vary greatly according to the needs of the users. Sometimes the solution to a problem lies in buying a helpful product, sometimes in a step-by-step guide or in booking a ticket to get from A to B.
As different as the needs of individual people are, their demands are the same:
- short loading times! A website must be there immediately, otherwise users abort and return to the search engine - a very negative signal for the ranking!
- optimal display on mobile devices! If you have to "wipe" your mobile phone for a long time to be able to see content, you will also break off. Every website must be optimized for the mobile version
- intuitive usability! If you have to search the menu and can't find your way around a website at first go, you can go to the more clearly designed website of the competition
- Content is King! If you don't get a helpful answer to your question or even find content that doesn't meet your expectations, you can also decide to call up another search result as quickly as possible
Only websites that meet the wishes and expectations of their users will achieve a good ranking on Google! Because nothing escapes the search engine. Negative signals influence the ranking just as much as positive ones.
Align user focus with "Searcher Personas"
To be able to assess the user as well as possible, it is helpful to create so-called "Searcher Personas". A Searcher Persona is a fictitious person developed as a representative of the target group. Everything that helps to get a clear picture of the target group can be assigned as an attribute to this user model. Age, gender, origin, level of education, income, interests, hobbies, relationship status - whatever makes the targeted user more tangible helps to tailor the content to this person.
A clear focus by no means limits the target group of a website, but avoids the dreaded scatter loss. Only those who focus their marketing exactly on their users can build up lasting customer loyalty and those who want to please everyone will not please anyone. When creating content, placing the user and his or her needs at the centre of attention, as if talking to a trusted friend, has become one of the most effective SEO measures for Google.
Click here for the complete series of articles: