There is a critical link between web design and SEO. However, SEO experts are rarely involved during web design. Had they been invited to incorporate their views about the most compatible web design for site optimization, things would have been easier and web design would have been guaranteed to be SEO friendly. However, what happens on the ground is just the opposite. Websites are created first and SEO is a subsequent consideration. This makes the task of SEO implementation more difficult for certain web designs. Websites, designed in the parallax format, are particularly known to be quite unfriendly for SEO. What should you do to make such website suitable for SEO has been discussed in this post.
Parallax web design
To begin with, let us understand what parallax web design means and its suitability for SEO. Then we need to delve deeper into the effects and efficacy of parallax web design to understand why it is often considered to be bad for SEO. However, there are ways to make parallax design and search engine optimization work together for the benefit of the business.
In Parallax design, the different contents of website are placed in a single page instead of spreading it across many other pages. In order to move over to a specific content on the page, the user just has to scroll up and down. Suppose you are on the home page of a website and click on “About Us” on the navigation menu at the top,you will find that you remain on the same page but the URL changes. It appears like “domain.com#about us” and the page scrolls down to the section “About us.” Had it been a traditionally designed website, as you would click on “About us”, you would be directed to a separate page with URL showing domain.com/about us.
The philosophy of parallax design is based on the understanding of displaying more content on lesser pages. Earning good ranks is possible with this type of website design, and it can be done by focusing on high quality content and keyword targeting. However, SEO philosophy is rooted in the belief that for earning good ranks, better visibility is very important, and to earn better visibility, separate pages with individual URLs must be created.The contradiction lies in opposing philosophies for which parallax web design is looked upon as a showstopper for SEO.
What is bad for SEO in parallax web design?
Now let us get a bit technical to understand how the problems are created for SEO that demands maximum visibility. The URL structure of a parallax website would only throw up the URL of the main page (home page in this case) that would be indexed by search engines. It would never consider the URLs of the topics of the content that show up as “domain.com#about us”. This restricts the opportunities for visibility as only a single URL is indexed.
Had the content been spread over on multiple pages as in traditional web design, each page would have individual URL like “domain.com/contact” that would be indexed. Therefore, with higher number of indexed web pages, the website visibility also increases. Keywords can be spread on several pages thereby increasing the chances of improving rankings.
Can the parallax websites be made SEO friendly?
Despite accepting the limitations of parallax web design and its conflicting philosophy with SEO, you will come across such websites and would also have to implement SEO. How can this be done? By following SEO advise top tips for website that professionals swear by.
There are some tests that have shown encouraging results for making SEO friendly parallax websites. A case in point is a test conducted on a parallax website where there were three distinct and different topics on a single page. The structure of the page consisted of – overview, the theory and thejQuery Engine. Three separate URLs showing http:// xxxx/overview, http:// xxxx/the theory, http:// xxxx/the jquery were designated for the page content. After the test was completed, it was seen that Google has picked up the individual URLs during indexing.
This test bears testimony to the fact that the contradiction between parallax web design and SEO can be suitably ironed out.
The result of the test can be technically explained for better understanding about the method that has been followed to make it happen. The planning of content has played an important role in making it attractive to search engines like Google. A general introductory content has been developed to highlight the theory and the method of testing. It is like a prelude to the actual content that gives indication about the worthiness of the content that merits indexation.
The main content is presented in three separate sections. One content is always active and it is hard coded in the HTML. The content of the other sections are deemed inactive and content is displayed through jQuery. This method ensures that the search engine understands that there is no possibility of duplication on the pages on the URL.
The jQuery script is aware of the vertical position of the browser. It is able to calculate the exact location where the position lies. During scrolling, the URL of the active section will be pushed to the address bar of the user and also find a place in browser history. This allows user to have a better experience of viewing as they are able to navigate back and forth across the history.
Bridging the gap
The gaps that existed between SEO and parallax web design have been amply plugged by this method. It is like getting the best of both worlds. The attractiveness of parallax design that makes crisp and smart websites coupled with the effectiveness of SEO that is achieved through technical manipulation can be used to the advantage of clients. All kinds of pages of websites, be it infographical or the landing page can be adapted in this method.
By combining the opportunities of jQuery with the right methods of content development, it is now possible to break the myth about the animosity between parallax web design and SEO.