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10 Writing Tips for Web Designers

There is more to web design than just code

Once you’ve created the perfect looking website, the next step will be to get traffic to it. It must be very frustrating to have a unique site without any visitors, but one needn’t worry about this. This could only be the result of you not applying techniques that are essential to you having a successful website. In order for your website to flourish, consider some of the following key tips to get traffic moving just the way you’d like it.

1. Have an SEO Strategy

For you to generate traffic, web users need to find your website. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) boosts the ratings of your site on Google, pushing it higher up the electronic hierarchy to make it among the first websites to pop up when someone searches for related keywords. Without an effective SEO strategy, users won’t be able to find your page when they enter relevant queries in a search engine. 

75% of users never scroll past the first page of search results which makes SEO very important – if you’re not part of this first page, how will potential viewers find your webpage?

Keywords are important i.e. you need to know what keywords and terms your audience will be searching for. It is important that you are aware of target keywords and how to link them with relevant pages on your site. Make sure that these keywords are relevant to the page that they’re on, because relevance scores in Google and other search engines will affect your page ranking. Overuse of certain keywords will have your readers lost and Google will penalize you in their ranking system. Google Analytics and Keyword Discovery websites are amongst some of the useful tools that will help with keyword phrases for your website.

Posting content that is relevant to your target audience is also vital. You can use blog posts, articles, videos and eBooks material for this. However, don’t let Google notice that your writing is purely geared for search engines. Google have developed algorithms that can spot automated and inorganic content from a mile away, so it’s important to keep your content organic.

Link building is one of the most important aspects of SEO. You can link to your own content but you can also have external websites that link to you (inbound links) or links on your webpage that direct users to external sites (outbound links). The correct use of internal and external linking tells Google and other search engines which pages on the internet are more important and relevant. Try to get other websites to link to your own content and try to provide links on your website to other domains to boost your SEO. 

Be smart about how you do this – you’ll get more SEO ranking benefit when you have both inbound and outbound links to or from authoritative websites rather than sites that no one cares about. People care about what authoritative websites say and do, and people value their content – websites that receive more inbound links from these sites will rank higher in search engines. However, if you completely flood your website with links to authoritative sites, this will be obvious to the SEO algorithms and your website may not rise to the top of the ranks as a result. Also, it may be very time consuming to acquire good inbound links, so prioritise your efforts. Pay attention to your variety of inbound and outbound links, where the links and going and where they are coming from.

2. Navigation

Make your site easy to navigate for your users. Design the site so that a reader will access the content fast. Do not clutter your homepage with so much content that hides the vital information. Keep in mind that the attention span of a viewer is only a mere eight seconds, so once they visit your site you need to capture their attention immediately. A great way of doing this is to include icons that will direct a reader to the information they desire such as a video, photo or article. Your page should not overstretch in terms of content length, scale it down to what is relevant. Remember the phrase “Quality, not quantity”.

Also, make sure your site is easy to navigate by search engine programs that determine your SEO. Paying attention to the names of your URLs will also allow search engine Spider programs to “crawl” through your pages better. Make sure you structure your URLs so that these Spider programs know where they’re going, for example:

Unstructured URL:

Structured URL:

If a website is easier to navigate for search engine programs then you’ll move higher up in ranking systems. To create better navigation you can also find and delete broken links, generate sitemaps and use online tools to assess crawling ease.

3. Research

Research is key
Know who your target reader is, what they want and how to get them to your site. What is your target reader’s demographic? Are they teenagers, middle-aged or elderly people? What is their field of practice? Do they like controversy and scandals or are they into love stories? Answering these questions will help you to develop an effective online strategy. Stick to one type of reader because if you target them all, you will end up losing all of them.

A great way of knowing what your readers want is to see what kind of viewers are coming to your site. If you know who’s coming, you’ll be able to adapt your website to suit their needs. Once your website is up, use free tools from Google Analytics in order to track your viewers. You’ll be able to see many things such as who is visiting your website, where these people are coming from, how they are getting there and what devices they’re using. 

Knowing this information will allow you to find out if you’re attracting your target audience or not. If you find out that you’re not attracting the right target audience, you’ll want to understand why that is and make changes to correct it. You’ll be able to develop better strategies and ideas to be able to attract the correct audience you want.

4. Be Professional

Let your website reflect its developer and designer. It goes without saying that each site should be professional, so pay attention to detail. It should not look like everything was thrown together in a hurry. A reader will immediately skip your site if the first thing that they see is poor layout and design. 

The theme color, font size, and content setup should look like the work of a professional. A reader will not take your site seriously if they think that no time, money or effort went into creating it.

Once you have a specific target audience in mind it can also be helpful to research websites that are similar to yours. Assess your competition – who are your main competitors and what have their websites got that you don’t have? Looking around at what else is available will give you some interesting insights and ideas about how to improve your own website. Go further than a short Google search – dig deep online!

5. Avoid Sales Jargon

Yes, of course, you want to make money from your site but do not make it too obvious for your readers to see. What is written for sales on the print will not work for web content. “Order our product here” is more acceptable rather than “our products are the best.” A reader will switch from your website immediately if they notice that it’s more of an advertising site and not the informative one that you had promised. 

Some words and phrases are also just not understood by anyone, or worse, they don’t mean anything to the viewer at all! Think carefully about the meaning of the language you’re using. If you sound too smart or if people can’t understand the meaning there will be less interest.

6. Mobile Friendly

Mobile optimization

Mobile users log on to websites with their phones more than their computers. 80% of the internet users own a smartphone making them an excellent target for online content. Tailor your website to satisfy the needs of all its visitors. Once a reader has a problem accessing your site through any of their devices, they will visit your competitors instead. Google’s own research has found out that 61% of users feel this way.

It’s easy to make slight changes to your site in order to make it mobile phone friendly. With a restricted amount of space, it will be important to simplify your site so that things can easily fit on a mobile screen. If you’ve got small fingers it’ll be much harder to tap a small text on a small screen. The amount of white space is also important. When designing a website you can have a tendency to squeeze in as much information as you can, but this won’t look good on a tiny screen, so keep plenty of space in the design. 

Try not to use any pop-up windows because these will come up in new tabs that will take up the whole of a mobile device’s screen space, which can be off-putting to a viewer. If you do decide to use such pop-ups, make sure you give clear instructions to users about how to navigate their way back to the page they linked from. Also keep in mind to match the branding of your standard site to that of your mobile site because even though your site will be “moving” to a smaller screen, you don’t want it to lose its touch.

7. Focus on the Readers

If your content is interesting to your readers, you’ll increase the chances of them visiting your website and linking to it. In turn, such linking will boost your SEO. Do not focus too much on the technical side of the site but also think of your visitors. Write keyword phrases so that they are recognized as part of the topic and not just to boost your SEO rankings. Don’t fall into the incorrect practices such as using a single keyword more than twice in one paragraph.

With a large amount of content already out there, “quality content” should be the number one focus.

It goes without saying that all content needs to be properly proofread to ensure there are no mistakes, by reputable editors if necessary. As the focus has to be on your viewers, don’t try and accommodate all viewers’ needs and make sure you don’t lose your voice and message. Make content shareable but also consistent with the message you’d like your site to bring.

Once you have some decent content, you can diversify the next batch available to give your viewers something new to look forward to. Diversity will also allow for more ways to reach potential viewers. If you’ve been writing a lot of blogs, try publishing a few infographics on Twitter or other social media with clear links to your website or even some videos. Add a bit of variety and spice to your website through a variety of content. Your existing viewers and new viewers will be sure to appreciate it!

8. Update your Content Regularly

Ensure that the website uploads new content on a regular basis, but not just anything, real engaging content that adds value and is of use to the reader. When a visitor finds no recent posts in a while, they will go and look for information elsewhere. If you’re in need of ideas, research trending topics and emerging issues to get ideas on what to write about. 

A reader will log in to your site on a regular basis if they are confident that they’ll be able to access new content that is useful to them. Your content will be great for keeping interest, so keep it informative for your viewers, but don’t lose sight of a call to action – you don’t want your viewers to read your content and then run away. Including links to join mailing lists, subscribe or receive further updates can bring those users back in the future and wanting more.

9. Write for Everyone

The online community is international. Not every person that visits your site is smart. Keep in mind that your website’s viewers understanding of the English language varies. Keep it simple and coherent – do not use complex terminologies and words to impress a few readers whilst potentially losing a whole lot more. You want your users to get what they’re looking for, not to feel challenged by what you present them. If it’s too difficult to understand your message or content, a viewer can always head elsewhere.

10. Include Sharing Options

Include sharing options

Having a reader visit your site and enjoy your content does little. Give your visitors a chance to share your content with their friends and followers on social media. This works well for you as it generates traffic to your website and brings in new subscribers. If you’d like viewers to be able to share your content, you’ll have to do a little research in your own time, but this can bring a lot of benefit. 

If you’re sharing on social media, make sure you send it out at the correct times so that more people can see and share, such as in the evenings during the week. Make sure that your website content includes the relevant social media sharing buttons so that users can share with one click. These buttons to facilitate sharing are slick and easy to implement into a website’s design, at no cost to you.


Knowing how to make a website is only the first step to success. Ensuring that it is successful is the hard part of it. Always test that your website is running smoothly on a regular basis to give your visitors an easy navigation time when they log on to your site. Simple log in errors and lengthy loading times will make you lose readers to your competitors. Use a professional and reliable web service provider to host your website so that you know it’ll be problem and error free. Do your research, determine who your users are, who they will be and what they want – this will allow you to make the changes to your website and design. Time to get to work!

Author's Bio:

Kevin is a professional educator and a private tutor with over eight years of experience. He is also a content writer for various blogs about higher education, entertainment, social media & marketing. Currently, Kevin works as a part-time writer for During his off time, Kevin enjoys traveling and cooking. Feel free to connect with him on Twitter, Linkedin & Google+.