How important is website structure?

How important is website structure?

A website has to serve many masters. The most important is its visitors or its customers. If visitors don’t like your site or are not “engaged” by it and leave it quickly, it speaks volume for the usefulness of the material on a site and its appeal.

A website also has to serve search engines by which we mean it must be understandable for a search engine bot to be able to tell what the site is about and the quality of the site in mere nanoseconds. One way to accomplish this is through a good site structure. Can a poorly structured site rank well? Of course. But why make the job harder than it needs to be for the bots and your visitors?

Many businesses contract with a web designer to create an attractive site without regard to the functionality of the site and how it works. That is really putting the cart before the horse. You need to have your list of keywords, of topic themes and important concepts before you even begin to explore the options for look and feel. You need to know the tone you want to set with the words you have chosen and very importantly, ‘why is this post or this picture important and necessary’ to the site. Posting content for the sake of posting content is never a very good strategy. It wastes your time and that of the visitors and bots. If there is a good reason for the content, if it adds to the overall experience and body of knowledge that your site provides, then, by all means, post it. If you are writing drivel in order to get a few words into the lexicon of your site; don’t bother.

Having a proper structure helps your visitors navigate to the information that will answer their questions. Having a proper structure helps search engines decide which of your many pages will best answer their searchers’ queries. And, as a bonus, you will need less effort to rank a properly structured website than one that is not. You have made the search engines’ jobs easier; and you are thusly rewarded with better rankings overall.

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