One-page websites & SEO

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You might be thinking of condensing your content down to one single-page either to save on money, to make it more punchy or to really drive down on your target audience.

Whatever your motive, it’s important to always keep in mind your SEO.

Yes, your single-page website may be striking and efficient and have just the right amount of content, but are you hurting your overall SEO value?

To figure out the impact on your SEO, we have to delve a little deeper into some key logistics.

Considerations to keep in mind when getting a one-page website

Consider the design

It’s no secret that there are a lot of web users browsing on their mobile. This is where the one-page website really shines.

Only having one-page tends to mean that it’s easier to translate onto a smaller screen. Fewer pages mean less navigation which, in turn, means a cleaner user experience.

However, the downside of this arrangement is that having a one-page website also means there’s less room for design.

There are only so many ways you can condense the information on your website to display only the important pieces, so the chances of your website looking similar to another one-page website are higher.

While imagery can transform a website entirely, the chances of your website looking similar to another increase when there isn’t much space to show unique design work.

Consider the loading time

Site-speed score provided by Google PageSpeed Insights

Another advantage is that one-page websites typically load a lot faster. This is not only because of less content but also because there is less of a chance of creating a “bloated” theme.

This point also goes hand in hand with the mobile speed test.

Think with Google showing how load times impact bounce rates. Source: Google/SOASTA Research, 2017.

Did you know that the probability of bounce-rate increases by 32% as page load time goes from 1 to 3 seconds? That’s right. Nearly a third of your chances of keeping your audience have vanished the longer your website takes to load on mobile.

Now, it is possible to create a full functioning 10-page website without having a bloated theme, but it can be a tricky thing to balance. To play it safe, go with the one-page option.

Load speed is very much a ranking factor with Google, so it’s important to make sure your website is as optimised as possible.

Consider keyword targeting

Using Google's Keyword Planner in order to get data on effective keywords to target

The one major drawback of one-page sites is they don’t particularly allow for a wide range of keyword targeting.

To have a well functioning one-page website, it typically needs to be designed around one main concept. While this sounds great, it does limit your ability to rank for a wider variety of keywords.

With a multipage website, every page on your website can target different keywords without confusion; this increases your chances of getting on that sought-after first page of Google — and that too for multiple terms.

If you’re relying heavily on Google for new customers and conversions, it makes sense to stick to a multipage website to attract your wider audience.

Consider the lack of content

Example website sitemap structure, with multiple pages

Earlier, we touched on how having concise content for your one-page website is a good thing — and it can be. However, that all depends on your audience.

If you know your audience is looking for that extra bit of detail, a multipage website is the way to go.

Example page, specifically for case studies

With some sectors, it’s just not possible to create a beautifully functioning single-page website. For example, if your website is a consultancy, such as SR1 Development, you’re probably going to need a little more information on not only the services you provide but also social proof, such as case studies, to win a potential customer over.

Not enough information can not only affect your user’s trust but also result in a higher bounce rate.

Consider the lack of links

Link data from Google Search Console

We all know that links are important for SEO, right? So why limit ourselves to just being able to link on one-page?

Google favours sites with links, regardless of if they’re internal or external. Obviously, with a one-page website, you’d be struggling for internal links. You’d also be struggling for external links, as this quickly takes your user away from your website and onto somewhere else.

Multipage websites don’t have this as a disadvantage, as there is no limit to the number of pages you can have on a website, and you’re actively encouraged to consistently link them all together.

Is a one-page website right for your business?

Overall, only you can decide what is right for your business.

Maybe you already have a large enough following and don’t rely on customers finding you via Google. Maybe you know that your audience is looking for something easy, fast and precise. Whatever the case, it is important to balance out the pros and cons to determine if a one-page website can satisfy your goals.

After all, a nicely designed one-page website is miles better than having no website at all.

Posted on 10th May 2020