Although some professionals would like you to believe otherwise, SEO and web design are intrinsically linked services – one cannot perform well without the help of the other. The process of development may be different in each case, as well as the methods and analysis, but it’s vitally important for a company’s web presence that their SEO is optimised according to a strategy, and their web design is optimised for SEO.
When you carry out a search on Google, Yahoo or Bing, often tens of thousands of results will show up – but it’s so many that most people won’t go beyond the first page of results if they can do anything to help it, and only then if there is nothing valid on the first page. That’s why it’s important that when someone asks their search engine a question, your website appears as one of the first ten answers on the Search Engine Result Page (or SERP). Search engines use different algorithms which are usually based on keywords and phrases, as well as relevancy. The engines search for your website’s content to make sure it’s relevant but it also pays attention to the design of the website and its coding – a poorly made website will rarely make it to the first SERP.
Some of the easiest ways to control search engine efforts to curtail your website are to use code, get related links from other high profile websites, and using the right keywords in the right way. The last especially can be incorporated into elements like the Meta Descriptions and HTML sources, and a sitemap helps to guide the search engine through the website easily, proving that it’s a simple and accessible site.
When an SEO-focussed website designer operates they have to make sure that the site doesn’t just look good to human eyes but also seems appealing to the search engine “spiders” which crawl it. There ought to be a good navigational system and informational content for this to work – so you will also need a professional copywriter!
An SEO-trained web design will also be able to help you on when to use title tags, bold and lists for specific reasons, and it’s a lot easier to do this while building the website than later on. These things help the spiders to understand what is important on your site and what isn’t.
Ideally, a business should use an all-round SEO and web design company who can also arrange their logo design, user interfaces and also adapt for mobile design. By utilising people with these skills they can get you what you want out of your marketing and increase your traffic and subsequent sales.
In this day and age, it’s virtually inexcusable for a company expecting good sales to have a bad website design, and little or poor SEO efforts. All too often the design of the website takes precedence over every other concern, even over its functionality – then when it comes to thinking about marketing there is no solid foundation to work on.
The truth is that you need to think about all of the steps involved before you get started. You need to know what your SEO strategy will be, how you’re marketing and who you’re aiming it at before you even begin working on the setup of your website.
There are a lot of details to navigate when it comes to SEO and web design, but you don’t need to be an expert in either to do a passable job. It’s really all about attracting potential customers and clients to your company – you need to be noticeable among the many other options and catch the eye of your target audience. SEO is used for targeting and increasing the traffic which goes to your site, aiming to keep visitors there for as long as possible.
An Example of our previous work for The Three Cups Inn, Stockbridge.
As with most businesses, you can be quite flashy but the most important factor is that you service or product is high quality, and your company is good with customer service. Try to understand what the client might want from your business and how you would discern between the businesses if you were in their shoes.
The marketing strategy is both what drives people to your website and what persuades them to buy or engage. You need to think about what your product or service can do for them, not what you want to sell them – as Zig Ziglar once said, nobody wants a quarter inch drill bit but they do want a quarter inch hole.
Five Helpful Tips
Your website probably shouldn’t be just one page long – a few small number of companies can get away with this, unless they’re holding pages. Good companies tend to have a lot of pages with a lot of content; galleries, blog posts, catalogues, links and more. You don’t always need this much but at least a home page, about page and details of your product or services are a good idea.
Don’t look as though you’re trying to rush the customer by allowing them to buy as soon as they get to the site as you could put them off, or miss out on a bigger sale.
Make your site look as though it’s been created consistently with the marketing and SEO strategies in mind.
Provide information on your protection of personal information and confidentiality agreements. It’s also quite common now to have information about cookies on a website so that customers can make informed decisions about their data – they’ll appreciate it later on. Although many won’t read your lengthy rules, even having them there makes you seem more trustworthy.
Know your Unique Selling Point and use it – this should be integrated into your website, marketing and SEO. Why should the customer buy from you and not your competitor?
With a good all-round knowledge of the business, you can craft a web design and SEO strategy that suits it – just ensure you think about how your marketing, SEO and website efforts will work together.