What is an SEO Website Structure?
By SEO website structure we mean the hierarchy between all available pages (urls) of one domain. This website structure is often depicted in the form of a graphical representation, whereby a clear categorization is used of all pages.
How does the website hierarchy contribute to SEO?
A good hierarchy is necessary for search engines and website users, because the speed with which information can be interpreted and found is faster with a well-structured website. It thus contributes to both the interpretation of information by search engines and the way in which users navigate the website. Both the user's behavior on the website and also the way in which crawlers can interpret the website contribute to better optimization for SEO and UXO.
In short: a categorization helps the end user to achieve his goal faster on the website.
Incorrect classification is difficult to interpret
An incorrect website structure can best be compared to a postman who delivers his mail in a street where the numbers are randomly distributed. In this equation, you can consider the postman as a crawler of the search engines or as one of the end users of the website: it will take a long time for the postman to deliver the mail and achieve its goal. It also takes a long time for the postman to get used to this layout. In the case of the website, it takes more effort for the end user and the crawler to see connections and this affects the rating of both.
Categorize your website yourself?
Broaden your knowledge:
Introduction to SEO Structuring of the website
Before you can set up a good website structure, it's important to understand the following: Search engines are stricter when it comes to categorization and in many cases take the information provided literally. This relates in particular to the way in which 'value' of a page is estimated. This value is created by, among other things, structuring pages and connecting them together via links such as a hyperlink.
Top level pages
Pages that are positioned at the same level are interpreted strictly by search engines as of the same value. Of course, we don't take into account what content the pages contain and how the behavior of users on the pages affects the value. Pages that are on the same level are therefore seen as equals.
Child pages are literally and figuratively subordinate to all parent pages. As a result, pages at this level are again compared with each other and weighted on value (for the end user). By the way, you take into account the fact that pages that are subordinate to another parent page are also compared to each other to determine value via an algorithm. The more consistent the website structure, the better for SEO and navigability.
Case: SEO for webshop urls
Tips on website restructuring
The question of whether restructuring the website is profitable. The results of websites have grown strongly in all processes to improve the website structure so far. The question is not whether it is profitable, but whether you value the user experience enough because it makes them navigate faster. The question of whether it is profitable is not testable for many companies and therefore cannot be answered objectively from a fair point of view.
Where do I start restructuring my website?
You would do well to first set priorities for the company: is it important to make a clear distinction between gender, for example, or do you see gender as a characteristic and not as a category? In that case you can also add a label to the item and remove 'gender' from level 2.
Here too, figures can help you to make a decision. Ask yourself or a specialized company such as Rootsteps the question: are people looking for 'jacket' or 'ladies jacket'? The answer is simple: at the moment people are often looking for a jacket in combination with the gender. Then the advice (at least from SEO considerations) is to name this and to also make this distinction in the website structure.
What do I do if my company wants to be gender neutral?
Then distinguishing between gender is not an option and you may be less findable on gender-related searches in the present. You would do well to remove level two in its entirety in this case.