I’m shocked at how few websites utilize proper search engine optimization practices. Wikipedia defines search engine optimization or SEO, as the process of improving the volume or quality of traffic to a web site from search engines through “natural” or un-paid (“organic” or “algorithmic”) search results.
With an ever-growing number of online and mobile websites, it is increasingly important for websites to be built in a way that the casual searcher can locate them.
Too often, clients are so focused on how a site looks and navigates, that they fail to pay any attention to the meta data, which is as important as (if not more than) the look and feel of the site. This failure means that you’ve got a beautiful site that no one can find.
Oh sure, if I plug in the actual URL, I’ll get to this or that site. But what happens if I (like most people) can’t remember the address of your site? What if all I can recall is the industry or a few catch-phrases? If I plug them into Google, Bing, Ask.com, Yahoo or any other search engine, will your website be returned as a relevant search result? Probably not.
But the fault doesn’t lie solely with clients. A fair amount of the blame rests with web developers themselves. After all, clients consult web developers for their expertise in building sites. And since most clients are invariably lay people, it’s up to web developers to educate clients on the proper protocol for building a website.
Proper protocol involves not only focusing on the way a site looks, feels and navigates, but also developing title tags, headers, rich text and descriptive keywords, such that your site can be found by people looking for what you’ve got to offer.
Proper protocol also requires that the web developer and client work closely to ensure that the correct type of traffic ultimately arrives.
Tune in to future posts, where we’ll be getting into the nitty gritty of building a proper website.