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Understanding User Behavior For Better Search Engine Ranking

Apr 26, 2008
How do you decide on the changes you make for better user experience?

Did you ever ask yourself the question "Why am I doing this"? Most of the webmasters do not do that. Just take a look at the bloggers who add as many widgets as they like thinking that these would make their blog look great. But, a seasoned webmaster will think thousand times before implementing anything (any new feature or modification) on the website. And that is not all; a good webmaster would track its performance throughout the time to find out if it is really necessary.

Just think about Google documentations or FAQ sections. What they do? After every answer they ask the reader straight - "Was this information helpful?" with two options - yes / no.

Why they are doing this?

The main reason is to understand (and they want to be definite about it) if the information is really helpful or not. In any other available situation they would have depended on assumptions. Apart from getting real data they are also being able to engage the reader with the content development process. And another most important aspect that you must have noticed is the "sense and simplicity" of the whole process when the content caters to diverse section of people from different group and ethnicity.

Now, just think it from a different perspective. Who knows more about Google products than Google! They could easily write long documents with an approach that what ever they write would be more than enough for the visitors. But they did not do this. They took the extra burden to make the content pages precise to help the visitors in the best possible way.

You will also find a lot of other websites too going through the same process to understand if the content is sufficient for the user. For example take a look at Yahoo; they are doing the same thing to understand their users.

Do you need to fulfill user's need to improve search engine rank of your site?

Yes, you do; search engines are giving as much importance to user experience in a certain page as the number and quality of incoming links.

Now, how do you find out if the user is satisfied with the content you are providing? (Here content means all the elements present in a web page.) We normally depend on some sort of analytics report to find out user behavior, click pattern and length of stay in a particular webpage to guess user experience.

To the most we may ask feedback from the visitors on the website in the contact page. But do you really think that the visitors are conscious enough to know what they are missing in a webpage! This statement is true to the core when we are thinking about the information seekers who necessarily land on a page for certain piece of information. And to add to the whole situation, do you really think that the visitors have enough time to click on the contact page and send you an alert on the missing content? By this time they will flee to some other website to fulfill their need.

Thus you must understand what your visitors are looking for otherwise getting more visitors to your page through search engine optimisation and super active link building does not making any sense. The visitor will not convert into customers.

And if your users are satisfied with the content you are providing, you can surely expect better search engine rankings in recent future with normal SEO process.
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