An SEO-friendly website starts from its foundation and I don’t mean the platform although that is important too.
These days with WordPress and Yoast and other SEO plugins that do most of the hard work for you, it is not that difficult to make your website SEO-friendly.
What’s difficult is figuring out the marketing before the website is designed, built, developed and written.
When we are commissioned to design websites, we first look at the marketing that the client is doing.
We ask these questions of our client.
For many, it is the first time they have to really dig deep and think hard.
- Who is the client trying to attract? (And, in the words of author and coach Alan Weiss, are you getting through to the real economic buyer a.k.a the person who can sign the cheque?)
- What is the client offering which is helpful to this group of prospects?
- Why is this client unique in her offering compared to the rest?
- What message is the client sending out and is that message clear and understood by her prospects?
- What words are her prospects using now to find her products or services?
- Are these words the same as the ones she’s using for her own business?
- Where is this group of people online and what are they discussing?
- What does the client want the website to do for the business?
These questions need to be answered even before we talk about colour schemes or design work.
Without a foundation of marketing, and without knowing how a website fits into your marketing, you will not achieve the levels of success you want for your own business.
When we uncover the answers to these questions (and usually it is through a discovery session where the client sometimes is surprised by her own answers), it is easier to plan the design, write the copy and produce the needed webpages.
It is also easier to optimize the webpages as we already know what words or key phrases are needed. We never need to guess what the prospect needs because we already know.
All websites need to be built on a foundation of solid marketing. When we are called to do a website audit or a consultation, we usually find that most websites aren’t conceptualized with this in mind.
Instead, they are first and foremost visual design and eye candy. Eye candy is wonderful if eye candy can sell your products but sadly, there is usually nothing beyond eye candy!
This is why we wrote our book, Web Wisdom. It’s not so much a book about how to create websites as it is one where we explain what needs to go into a website so that your website works as your best marketing and lead generation platform.
Our book is not meant for web designers but for entrepreneurs who want to find out why their websites don’t work or how to integrate their websites into their entire marketing system.
Ultimately, marketing must always be at the forefront of excellent web design.
Good design should lead someone to take action after she understands your message. The issue is, if the website isn’t designed from a marketing perspective, it won’t produce results for your marketing. That’s a tragic but real fact.
Like this article? Get more insights about marketing when you sign up for our free newsletter.