According to deluxesurveillance.com, the website architecture defines the foundation and thus the structure and structure of a website. This is not just about the visual parameters of the design. The strategic blueprint of a website also contains technical aspects. Users are dependent on a clear organization of the content so that they can find their way around a page. This fact makes the architecture of a website the decisive criterion when it comes to usability. Search engine crawlers also need a clear structure in order to record the content and quality of a website.
Why is website architecture important to SEO?
The information architecture of a website basically envisions the heart of SEO basics. In fact, the website architecture is of fundamental importance for Google, because the search engine’s crawler uses the directory structure to evaluate the subpages. Similar to architects, SEO specialists therefore conceptualize, structure and optimize the URLs and directories of homepages and shop pages.
The prerequisite for Google to register the entire content of a website:
The crawler only recognizes the subpages and their keywords if the directory structure is logical and clear. However, if the website architecture extends to a very deep directory structure, indexing is much more difficult for the crawler. It is possible that individual pages are not taken into account – and this fact damages the ranking.
What influence does the architecture of a website have on usability?
The structure and structure of a page have a direct impact on usability. A flat and clear hierarchy of topics and URLs guarantees users uncomplicated navigation on a website. This means that the information structure is closely linked to user-friendliness. The success of a website depends on the degree of user friendliness of the user interface.
If the usability meets the requirements of the user, this is noticeable in a high traffic and a low bounce rate, the so-called bounce rate. Thus, the user friendliness has an indirect effect on sales and conversions. It is all the more important to align the website architecture and design to the needs of the user!
How should a user-friendly homepage architecture be designed?
The ultimate goal is to create a homepage architecture that groups content as sensibly as possible and guarantees that it can be found quickly – for both the user and the search engine crawler. A logical, harmonious and hierarchical structure and certain technical requirements are required so that users can easily navigate the site and quickly evaluate the data using the crawler.
The top priority of the website architecture: easy and quick orientation on every subpage
Only in the rarest of cases does a user reach a homepage or a shop page via the start page. More often, the organic search or an external deep link leads to a website visit. This occurrence makes every subpage of a website a possible landing page.
The user must therefore be able to navigate to their destination from every page – regardless of where and via which route they enter the website. This requires a specific and flat URL and directory structure.
From a practical point of view, it therefore makes sense:
- To limit the structure of a website to a maximum of three levels.
- Ideally, to send the user to the central areas of the website with just one or a maximum of two clicks.
What is the significance of the URL structure and sitemap for the website architecture?
The website architecture is not just about the levels of the directories. Technical conditions such as the loading speed and the indexing of the URLs are just as relevant in order to meet SEO-relevant criteria. In the course of optimizing the architecture of a website, the following parameters must therefore be taken into account:
The URLs reflect the content of the page appropriately and take SEO criteria into account
- Each subpage receives a specific main keyword that matches the content
- The URL also contains this main keyword to help index the page
The crawl process can also be boosted by means of a sitemap
- A sitemap contains all pages and subpages
- This page overview can be submitted to Google in XML format via the Search Console (Webmaster Tools)
Keep an eye on loading speeds
- Long loading speeds should be avoided because they reduce the conversion rate and traffic
Is there a universal method for a successful homepage architecture?
The successful architecture of a website requires individual and forward-looking planning. There is no general recipe for a “good” structure – the respective content and its dimensions determine the final form of the page. At the same time, website structures can take on the most varied of shapes. While a “one-pager” is limited to a single page, for example, the classic structure extends to a main page and several sub-pages.
How is the information architecture of a website created?
Information architecture encompasses the process of designing and defining user interaction with a website’s information system. This includes naming and defining information pages and their functions. These are then grouped and strategically placed in the information offer. This architecture therefore includes the classification, labeling and navigation of the content and visualizes a hierarchical structure. In order for the blueprint of the website to take shape, there are several well thought out decisions to be made.
1. Define the structure of the website
First of all, it is important to make the subject of the website tangible via a hierarchical structure. In general, three levels are used here:
- Home page (1st level)
- Topic channels / category pages (2nd level)
- Product or detail pages (3rd level)
Depending on the topic and subject, the structure can differ from the classic structure of a website.
2. Structuring the URLs
The start page offers a suitable interface to create links to the individual category pages. These category pages are ideally also accessible via a menu so that the user can quickly navigate to the desired topic. In turn, references to the product pages are made via the topic pages. This careful linking also falls under the field of technical SEO optimization.
3. Provide different avenues for information
Users with different search intentions behave differently on a website. This aspect needs to be considered in the information architecture of the website.
An internal search function enables users who already have a precise idea of the information they want to find their destination. Users who are not looking for a specific product or specific information interact with the site more intuitively – the website architecture should also provide ways for this.
Which challenges does the website architecture have to meet?
The digital age is sparking an enormous variety of topics and data. In this context, users act with increasingly complex sources of information. This places significant demands on the homepage architecture, as it has to make the multidimensional information sources accessible to the user.
This goes hand in hand with the increasing relevance of keywords, which the user and the search engine use to capture the content of the subpage directly. At the same time, the importance of user-oriented language is growing.
In addition, the architecture of a website does not represent a perfectly formed construct. The website grows with the offer and other topics – this means that a successful website architecture plans the creation of future categories.