Are themes play an important role in SEO? Will your site’s SEO gets affected by changing the theme? Let’s deep dive into the whole matter.
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Find the best WordPress themes that provide a better user experience, and SEO friendly on ThemeForest.
However, there is no doubt changing theme affect SEO but if it is done correctly it can improve your SEO ranking.
Does a Website Theme Matter for SEO?
If we answer in one word, does website theme matter for SEO? We would say yes. Website themes are an important element for any website. It acts as a big player in the working of the website.
And so enough care is necessary for the selection of themes. The website theme plays a major role in drawing visitors to the website.
The theme affects the number of content elements of a specific website. The elements include,
- loading time
- text and pictures
- structured data
- How the pages are interlinked
They are also key elements of SEO. SEO means a search engine needs to understand the content of a website and accordingly pages are shown in Google search results. In that case, an effective theme will facilitate the SEO process.
However, the changing theme of the website influences the processing of the search engine which can lead to poor visibility of the website in the search results.
That is why the theme of the site should be outstanding and effective. Before using the theme, you can test the theme on a website to see how customizable it is for search engines.
Best SEO Friendly Theme
How a Changing Theme Affects SEO!
The theme is the foundation of a website. It reflects the content of your website on the front of the website. Let’s see at some points how a changing theme affects SEO!
#Site Load Speed
Theme is a powerful aspect of your website that can optimize your website performance or can degrade it.
Some themes are very awesome which gives a beautiful look to the website interface, while some themes are very complex and take a longer time to load your page, resulting in poor performance of your website.
If you select a lightweight theme for your website, it will take a second/two for your page to load.
Fast website load helps in promoting your website. Visitors first expect a website to load fast, then pay attention to the content of the website.
If your audience finds out about the slow loading of your website, they will not be interested to visit your website a second time.
Therefore, changing the theme affects your SEO if it is not helpful in boosting the website load speed.
# Design & User Experience
User experience is a significant factor for SEO. If your website interface is not user-friendly, and difficult to read, visitors will return to search results indicating to Google that it is not helpful to meet the requirements.
The design of your website impacts the performance of the website. Therefore, your theme needs to be well-designed and readable.
After building a new website, first, you need to focus on making your website appealing, so that it can attract visitors to the website.
Of course, quality content is required for any website to engage visitors, but well-designed websites keep visitors engaged with the website content as well.
#SEO Metadata / Structured Data
A number of themes provide your website with fitted SEO features that allow you to manage your page titles and structured data for better search results.
Hence, changing themes results in the loss of all your optimized data, and it will be a big harm to your SEO. If you lose your valuable data, your long time labor on your website becomes in vain.
Therefore, while changing the theme, you need to consider every aspect that has the potential to harm your SEO.
A theme contributes a lot to content formatting. A premium theme uses the appropriate heading structure for your website content which is helpful in boosting your SEO.
But, a low-quality theme is not able to determine the custom format of your content. Therefore, while choosing a theme, it is important to check the theme’s efficiency.
High-quality content is not enough for better SEO, your content format should also be standard and appropriate so that it can provide a maximum user experience.
Tips Not to Hurt SEO While Changing Theme
#Choose an SEO-Friendly Theme
An SEO-friendly theme for your website is crucial for your site to rank on Google. Your initial search when designing your website should be a custom theme.
An SEO-friendly theme formats the content with properly organized code which ensures a better user experience.
When people visit your website, they will be pleased with your appealing theme, and this will result in traffic to your website.
#Test Your Theme Before Going Live
To improve your search rankings, it’s essential to test your new theme to see how useful it is for SEO.
Here you can adopt a step. Build a staging website, and observe that your theme is well-formatted and user optimized.
Furthermore, you can use the elements inspector on any modern browser to ensure that your headings are formatted with precision.
#Optimize Your Site for Speed
A perfect theme takes a maximum of two seconds to load the site. If your website is designed with a new theme that takes more than two seconds, it affects the performance of your website.
Therefore, you must think about optimizing the theme to ensure excellent speed on the website. Website speed matters in the ranking of your site.
This is because Google uses page speed to rank pages as well. A fast website is always at the summit of Google search results.
#Stick with Your New Theme for a Long Time
Frequently changing the theme of websites hurts SEO as it replaces all the pages that the Google search engine has indexed from your website.
So, as you customize your theme for better user experience and ranking, stick with it for a long time.
If you change the theme of your website after a short period of time, it will impact the performance and ranking of your website until it turns into a solid theme.
Note, always select an SEO-friendly theme that suits your website business.
#Use a Plugin for SEO & Structured Data
Plugins are also an important aspect of optimizing your website for better user experience and greater visibility in search results.
If your theme is capable of managing your SEO and structured data, the next step would be to switch to a plugin.
A powerful plugin ensures the strength of your website for better performance and prevents loss of data in the future.
Plugins are offered in free and premium versions. You can use a free or paid plugin, but your plugin must have the ability to optimize your SEO.
The special advantage of using plugins is that you have changed the theme of your website, but it will not affect your SEO title, meta description, and structured data.
Therefore, designing a website with optimized plugins is as significant for SEO as the theme.
#Crawl Your Website before and after the Change
This would be the best practice to maintain your superior website performance to collect your website reports. You need to do this regularly which is significant for big changes.
Crawl your website before and after changing themes using a specific tool, and find all existing errors on your website.
This process lets you see what errors you’ve resolved on your website, what’s still to be resolved, and what new errors have been created. There are some technical crawlers that will be useful to achieve this right.
#Double-check Both External and Installed Scripts
It is a common occurrence that many people post third-party content on their websites through plugins.
It has also been observed that many people choose to add scripts and third-party scripts through Google Tag Manager, a script management tool.
Therefore, changing the theme affects the content of your website. When a user visits your website, they may notice that the script of your website has been changed, resulting in cracks in some functionality of your website.
#Diligently Check Google Search Console Data
Google Search Console is the best way to find out how Google views your site. Google Search Console is full of valuable information that is useful for your page.
Two important tools you should know here include the “crawl statistics” and “coverage” tabs. Knowledge about the tools will be helpful in optimizing your website for SEO.
If you learn how to work with tabs you will be able to spot possible errors or problems.
It is important for you to do this after making a major change to your website where multiple URLs may be affected at once. Hence, checking Google Search Console data is very essential for SEO.
#Create Your Site in a Test Environment First
The internet environment is changing with the changing times. So, you should have good information about the digital world.
When you go to build a website on your preferred platform, you should collect all the updates related to your website.
Keeping pace with the development environment of the internet, create your website with updated elements, like modern themes, plugins, etc.
On the other hand, if you update your website, it will not change the content of your live website. Plus, it will let you test accurately how things will change.
#Go for a single-purpose theme
Multipurpose themes come with advanced features to fulfill a variety of requirements and they required user skills and time investment. Many multipurpose themes are heavy coded and take a long loading time.
Whereas a single-purpose blog theme like Typology (trusted by 4,522 users) is a simple lightweight theme with low coding that is better for particular niche-based sites. But yes you will get less functionality compared to a multi-purpose theme.
Whereas single-purpose themes are easy to use, customize, and easy to navigate for your site users. To understand more about the niche and multipurpose themes you can check the breakdown here.