Similar to building a house, when developing a website there are needs and there are wants. This could include the design and user experience, as well as the content tone and architecture. For the last 15 years most companies have developed sites without SEO strategies in place, which has negatively impacted their brand's findability and performance. It's become a common theme for companies to seek SEO assistance after finishing their new website, which is similar to building a home in the sense that right after it's done you realize you wanted hardwood floors and blue paint, instead of the carpet and green paint you're stuck with. Changes or patchwork edits after the fact eat up additional time and additional budget, and can ultimately ruin the overall user experience in many cases.
Companies are increasingly realizing that the need for sound SEO strategies is a critical component to their online performance and success. They not only want consumers to see a well-designed site, but a site that has high rankings within the search engines, as well as a site that converts the user into some kind of action, be it a lead or a sale.
When building a brand new site, it's important to have a full set of keywords developed in advance. If for some reason you don't have existing conversion data to support the prioritization of your keywords, taking advantage of Google Keyword Planner is an easy way to get a read on volume of keyword searches and determine which keyword themes and correlating pages of content need to be developed on your site. Once you have a solid keyword foundation in place, the following list of items should be considered as you move forward with your new design in order to create sustainable SEO progress:
If you're looking to overhaul or replace a website, there are many insights to be had from the exiting site that impacts the way in which you move forward with developing the new one. How are users currently engaging with the site? How are they using site navigation to locate specific content? Analytics tracking and heat mapping code should be in place to monitor user interaction on a page by page basis and provide valuable insight into other key performance metrics, such as:
Building a site without proper considerations for SEO best practices can easily result in large amounts of both wasted time and wasted money. At the end of the day, your website could be one of the sleekest and best looking on its surface, but if it isn't structured properly behind the scenes and doesn't rank accordingly, what does it matter? By viewing your next site design project through the lens of an SEO marketer, you can ensure your beautiful new site will be seen by an exponentially larger audience.
Image on home page via Shutterstock.
Upcoming Webinar: PPC Pause and Reflections for 2013
Thursday, December 12 - 2013 was a major turning point in search advertising. With Google's Enhanced Campaigns and Bing's innovative Smart Search capabilities in Windows 8.1, now is a great time to pause, reflect, and plan for the new year.
Webinar attendance is free. Sign up today!
As CEO, Andrew Beckman oversees the strategic direction and business growth of Location3 Media. Andrew founded Location3 Media in 1999 as a media buying agency and has since expanded the portfolio of services to include PPC management, SEO, local search marketing, landing page optimization, social media, web analytics, creative design, content marketing strategy, and more.
Prior to founding Location3 Media, Andrew was an international sales manager for DoubleClick, Inc. where he was charged with opening new sales offices, as well as training teams on U.S. search marketing strategies. Andrew is an active member of DMA's Search Marketing Council, a governor for the DMA ECHO Committee, and is a frequent presenter at industry conferences including SES, SMX, PubCon, IFA, and DMA.
December 12, 2013
1:00pm ET / 10:00am PT