Web design and search engine optimization (SEO) are closely related and because of that designers are frequently questioned about it. There is a lot of gray area about what the designer’s responsibility is and what is in their power. SEO involves much more than just design, but there is still a lot that the designer can do to help. A web designer can create search engine friendly sites to give future and ongoing SEO efforts.
A search engine friendly site makes it easy for different search engines to find the content, determine what the site is about and allows the site to rank as high as possible based on content. Designers should have a basic understanding of on-site SEO and what can affect their rankings. They should also avoid making any promises to clients that say their design will positively affect the site’s search engine ranking. There is only so much a designer can control so they shouldn’t promise more than what is in their power.
A designer can do a few things to aid SEO though. A designer can discuss SEO with their client in order to determine good keywords, can discuss and create optimized page titles, create clean code with primary content high in the code, and use internal links to help visitors and the search engines find the most important content.