Think "SEO" from the Beginning of Website Design
January 6, 2022
Everyone wants to be proactive, heading off problems in their business before they impact profits and reputation. If your company is preparing to design or redesign your website, proactivity starts with learning how incorporation of Search Engine Optimization principles from the start of the web design process will help you reach your goal of more business via the Internet.
Far too many of our clients tell us after their new website is built, “We have our new website finished. We spent $8,000 and love the look. However, no one can find us. Can you help”?
We certainly can, and enjoy every minute of it. However, this costs a company even more money when the additional expense could have been avoided if the website was designed correctly from the start. Fortunately, your company can avoid the additional expense of search-engine-friendly redesigns by the application of the following proven methods of Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Top 5 Items for “Building a New Website for SEO
We love to help people find their target audience on the web, and Search Engine Optimization is one tool we are absolutely passionate about, which helps accomplish the missionk.
- Acquire a domain name with your most important product or service included. – When WSI Ship Shape Web Weavers acquired this company, we shifted the marketing side of the company to this domain name (www.avalancheinternetmarketing.com) for just that reason. If we could get in the time machine though, I’d make the domain name 12 characters or less (easier to type, say, and less misspellings). Final tip: get a “.com” domain. That’s all people remember. Otherwise you end up spending a huge sum down the road.
- Each Keyword is its own Market – The idea is that a person searching for information only wants that information right now, and nothing else. Let’s pretend that I own a shoe store and a customer comes to me looking for brown patent leather shoes. Would I take them by the moon boots, sandals, and sneakers first? No way! I’d take them to exactly what they asked for and tell them all about it. I’d let them try it on, see themselves in a mirror with it, etc. Assigning a different page to each important keyword phrase results in many pages and time spent writing copy, but commitment to that principle will focus your website visitors on the one question they have at that exact moment in their life. Failure to target your web page distracts your readers and pokes a large hole in the bottom of your wallet/purse. (Unfocused content = no relevancy = no ranking!)
- Search-Engine Friendly Navigation – Ensure that search engines can find all the pages on your website quickly, easily, and in a manner that matches your end-user’s thought process when they search a website. Your web designer should be fluent in these design principles. If not, it’ time to call in a SEO specialist to help.
- Use Unique Meta Tags for Each Page – Work with your web developer to carefully incorporate separate title, description, and keyword tags for each page in your site. These must be unique for each page to help search engines identify the topic of your page, and to entice users to click each page as unique. Don’t spend too much time on the keywords tag since the major search engines don’t use it anymore, but you can add the major keyword phrases and some common misspellings just to be sure.
- Balance content with visual aspects – Use readable color, font, and size of text, develop an easy-to-use interface, and appropriate images for visual effect. Use flash to accent content or for a specific visual presentation that can’t be done any other way (and certainly don’t design your entire website in Flash unless you are a music artist!). Fire any web designer that suggests use of frames to build web pages. Test your website with completely independent end-users, rather than employees.
There are nearly 100 additional website SEO principles that can help your search engine rankings whether they are applied to your website is up to you, but know someone in your industry is using them. The point to take from this article is that you MUST get these designed in from the start or pay extra when you call us in after the fact.