Accordion Style Web Design and SEO
We all want to build a website that is SEO friendly, yet is designed for conversion. So many websites out there have a massive amounts of text, and yet they are trying to sell something. Could be plumbing services, could be a car. In most cases, people are just looking to see if the site looks “legit”. Basically does it pass the sniff test? If the site looks modern and doesn’t trigger any subliminal alarms, people inherently look for the “buy now” or the form fill or the “call us” button.
So what happens when your potential customers have to sift through all the extremely valuable very helpful content on your site? Do they get lost looking for the call to actions? Do they simply go to another website and thus losing you a sale opportunity? See the issue here is that Google loves content. So do humans, but for certain websites in certain niches. Wait, Stephen, are you saying content marketing is dead? Yes, along with SEO. It died a long long time ago.
Scientific or political websites readers want all the content they can read. Tutorials, yes all the written content possible. But, if you are a service provider website like I mentioned, with the proper set up, i.e. minimal clutter and clear call to actions, you can actually get away with having less content visible. How is that? “I thought you needed content to rank?” Well, yes you do, in most cases. And we are not saying you won’t have helpful content available. Users just won’t simply see it. That is unless they click for it.
An accordion is simply a style that web developers can use to make content appear and disappear in a click. It makes the site look super sleek and minimalist, while still giving users that engaging helpful content, it also helps keep attention to what really matters. That call to action.
Why the accordion or tab method works for conversion
Conversion means different things for different companies in various stages of their digital marketing. For this conversation, we will stick with getting someone to pick up the phone and call. For most of my WordPress sites I use this plugin to help get the tab or accordions I need.
Inside of these Accordions you can label these accordions with a Title. You can add a description. Which can often be the majority of your written content. Use several of these accordions in order achieve the ideal layout you want.
This style of development helps keep the main thing the main thing. And that main thing is getting people to convert. Too often as digital marketers, designers and SEOs, we get caught up in traffic and rankings. But what good is ranking and getting traffic if the offer will not convert? Designing a site that is free from distraction, that is focused on funneling the attention of the visitor to the “buy now” or “call now” buttons is really the pinnacle of web development.
Some of the most beautiful and engaging websites you will find use minimal text that is visible. Look at Pinterest. Pinterest is a content based social platform. It also uses a version of an accordion style. You click on an image, which has minimal content visible in the description. Then when the image URL is pulled up you can see the remaining content and description. Yes, this is not a true accordion, but Pinterest plays by different rules. Yep, traffic really is king when it comes to achieving rankings. Pinterest is a black hole for productivity. Just ask my wife, she gets all her recipes from Pinterest, as well as my to-do list for house projects.
So just because you see websites with long form content pieces on their website, does not mean that you have to conform. Think about your niche and know if it is an audience that is looking for really meaty content or if they are looking to solve an immediate need. If it is an immediate need, then design for minimal distractions and use some accordions to increase your conversion rate.
Stephen Twomey is the owner of MasterMindSEO. He loves hanging out with his wife and three young sons. When he is not working, Stephen loves lifting things up and putting them down.