Downloadable files are files embedded in a website that the user is able to download onto their computer and access at any time without the need to be online or visiting the website. This is particularly useful if your website needs to deliver content such as order forms, queries, and instructions for products or example invoices.
Let’s take instructions for example – if you want your website to contain user manuals for all your products, but you do not want waste valuable space and pages on it, these files can all be made available as PDF downloads on a single page. This also enables visitors to download the content and peruse the manuals at their own leisure.
However when it comes to SEO it is important to keep in mind that downloadable content can be indexed by search engine robots, however there are certain optimization steps that need to be taken:
- Always ensure that your downloadable content is text based and can be read by search engine robots. Therefore when converting the document to rich content such as a PDF, ensure that the content remains copy and paste friendly instead of becoming an image.
- Give the downloadable file an SEO friendly URL – this means a static and descriptive URL that makes it easier for search engines to index the page.
- Make sure that your downloadable content is as interactive as possible by adding links to the text itself, and making sure that the links work.
- Limit the size of these files, as the longer it takes to load the less the user experience will be positive.
Although it may not seem like a good idea to include downloadable content on a website, in terms of minimizing insane volumes of information to easy to read offline content, it is the best route to go. Secondly there are optimization opportunities with downloadable content that cannot be missed.