Lessons from a web design company
” You have website, and ofcourse you would like traffic but all too often website design focuses on the person and not the search engines.
The Job of search engines is to make sure they send the “searcher” exact and relevant results.
How do search engines find the most relevant sites? Simple – they “crawl” your site and the clever algorithm grades your content. This can be text, images, video pics etc.
So essentially if you focus on the site visitor whilst keeping the search engines in mind you will have a win win situation on your hand.
Gunshot digital has stringet design guidelines that can help you. Best of all its free – just call us and we will send you this doc.
So – moving on – remember that if you are online – the design is important, but designing with search engines in mind is also important. Our friends @ Hubspot and SEOmoz have good resources in Seo friendly web design.
How a web design company goes about its job. Essentially there are four steps.
- Make it effective
- Consider site functionality
- Make sure it can be crawled (parseable)
- Make it super easy to Read
This means – no silly black grounds (although some awesome sites have them, but these are few and far between)
Select a good font that is easy to read
Keep the copy crisp and engaging (it helps to pay a content writer)
Elance, Odesk,guru etc are some places that you can find good content writers.
Space out our content –
Just like in a word document – space out your content –
It should have a heading, paragraphs, and keywords. Not only is this a good idea for SEO but its also just common sense.
TIP: Make your copy fun, engaging and try not to use jargon
TIP: Use keywords but don’t go nuts.
Finally, – ask someone to read it and take their advise on changes
** DO NOT BE OVER CONFIDENT _ – USE THE SPELL Check*
Use simple fonts, but don’t be afraid to use fancy fonts – just check that its easy to read.
If you want your site visitor to stay – do yourself a favour and make it easy to read your content.
Cross Browser Testing
All to often a site is launched without proper cross browser testing. This is just plain silly.
Ask you developer and designer to do the cross browser test, for more help on this google “ cross browser testing” or “ w3c.org”
Rich Keywords in the copy
Ok so this is 2012 post panda/post Penguin updates from Google.
Use keywords, but don’t go nuts, over optimization will land you into a lot of trouble.
Use the google keyword tool and find out the best keywords for your business/service/product.
DO use the keyword in the title tag and a loosely use it in the copy – do not go over board, stuffing keywords WILL NOT HELP YOU.
Simple, use the 3 level deep principle. Top Nav, 2nd level and 3rd level.
Anymore and its just irritating. Navigation is to be simple so that people can find what they need quickly. This keeps people happy. If they have to work to get your content – they most likely are NOT going to buy from you.
Quick tip – use google tools to do a crawl test to see how your content sits with it.
This is easy and takes 5 minutes to do, if you need a free consultation on how to do this – just ask usJ
WE love google, look at their sites, all their sites are easy to use, simple in design, and make you take a call to action.
TIP: Keep your design simple.
TIP: USE HTML5 website design
All you need again is a 3 page Design – Home page (this could have a slider, a 3 – 4 main section with links to your site) 2nd level page design (services/about us/ contact)
And 3rd level (Under service you will have for example webdesign/Seo/social media)
TIP: Think very carefully what the site visitor is going to think when he lands on your page. Does the deign, imagery clearly define / explain who you are, what you do and why its important to them?
Page load times and why its important
- If your site take a long time to load – your visitors are going to bounce
- If your site loads and the mages do not – your visitors are going to bounce
- If your site takes time to load – the search engines will NOT be your friend
To avoid all the above – make sure your page weight is low. Get your designer and developer to check page load times, services like google, pingdom etc will easily let you see you page load, images, scripts etc and tell you how to improve them.
TIP: USE A CDN
- Make it easy for your site to be found – design with SEO in mind
- Content – is it super easy for people to share your content – social media icons
- Analytics – check how your content is doing via Analytics
Hope this help – follow us and keep in touch for more web design tips.