Information architecture is not something that you can do quickly. This post recaps Omni Marketing’s presentation from Shari Thurow.
Information architecture and SEO
First, consider organization and labeling. It must be easy to use and your information must be easier to find. If people cannot find what they want to find, they will leave your website and you will lose customers. Only an average of 12% of web visitors will return to a website that was unhelpful before.
Wireframes helps reduce lost customers, reduce development costs, increase crawlability, increase indexation, increase rankings and build brand value. Tech teams often don’t think like your customer. A technique to try is to take a website screenshot and remove design and content and individually quiz people about what page they are viewing.
Content MUST contain words and phrases that people type into search engines. Reduce number of ”WTF” moments.
You do not want the technical model of your tech team. Accommodate navigational, informational, and question search types.
Understanding information architecture
Return to the idea of organization and labeling think about categorization, hierarchical taxonomy. Avoid practices like siloing and page rank sculpting.
To have successful blogs and social media networks, use categorization. If you have different types of visitors or industries, versioning pages to include relevant keywords in the content is important. Give multimedia a separate area in addition to their native locations. To test, make sure you’re observing the user target that you want to reach. Pages should be unique, distinguishable and well-labeled. Think in terms of navigation labels over keywords. Yup, SEO and information architecture are related.
For blogs, titles and headings SHOULD contain keywords. Use embedded text links to other previously written blogs and…categorize, categorize, categorize. This helps your articles and posts maintain traffic as they age.
A few resources:
Taxonomy Warehouse provides taxonomy structures by industry.
Use a tilde ”~” search to find keyword synonyms.
Check out The Huffington Post for a great author page structure.
Only children and programmers “minesweep”, don’t require users to search for links. Make them obvious.
Spell out abbreviations.
Give people choices, but not too many. Drop downs give too many choices, one button makes people feel they’re being forced into a sales funnel.
Review Tips for Getting Valuable User Generated Content
How do you get good website, product and service reviews?
Monitor and reward good reviews.
That’s it! Great presentation!