In our “Four Pillars of SEO” series we have been covering the main concepts used by search engines to decide how to rank websites in organic search. The first pillar was about relevance, and we also looked at how keywords affect relevance. The second pillar was about crawlability and making sure search engines can easily understand the content on your website. In today’s post we cover User Engagement, which is the third pillar of SEO.
What is user engagement and why does it matter to search engines?
User engagement is all about making sure users spend time interacting with your website content. Search engines want to ensure they are directing their users to websites where time is spent reading/engaging in the content. Search engines do not want to send their users to websites where a user would exit the site quickly as there is no engaging content.
How can I understand and improve my website’s user engagement?
Tip #1: Check Your Page Speed
Page speed is important as users of your website will potentially exit if pages do not load quickly. Here is a Website Page Speed post discussing page speed and how to check your page speed on your website. A good rule of thumb is to have web pages load in less than three seconds. If your website has slow load time we’ve also written a post about the easiest ways to improve your website’s site speed load time.
Tip #2: Monitor How Users Interact with Your Website
The best way to understand how users are interacting with your website is through Google Analytics. Through this software, you can learn what pages users visit and how much time is spent on each page. This information can help guide you to update content or direct users to specific pages.
Tip #3: Keep Your Content Fresh
Another way to help with user engagement is to have fresh content. Previous users of your website will have an opportunity to further engage with your website. The easiest way to have new content on your site is to routinely create new blog posts. You can also maintain routine updates to your website’s other pages to highlight new and relevant information.