The world of web design is complex and full of misinformation. Among them is the belief that most website designers have a solid understanding of Search Engine Optimization (aka SEO).
In truth, the exact opposite is true. Most web designers know very little about SEO and this includes those with degrees in “Website Design.”
A friend of mine received her degree in “Web Design” from a reputable design college. When I asked her what she was taught in regards to applying SEO to design she replied… “Well not too much.”
She was taught their definition of SEO, but her courses spent little time explaining to her the basic concepts. However, they weren’t actually taught the art and science that we call SEO. Instead they were told that work should be performed by an company that specialized in Search Engine Optimization.
I agree with this as web designers are typically classified as “artsy” by nature and not always best suited to things that are highly technical. That’s not to say that there aren’t some who are good at both, just that it’s probably the exception rather than the rule.
In my experience most of our clients know very little about the web design process and mistakenly believe that their hired web designer is building an optimized website for search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc… As many web designers forget to discuss the topic with their clients, the site is launched without being fully-optimized to be found.
To improve your chances of getting a beautiful website that is well-optimized for the search engines, it’s important you understand these three factors:
During this phase, Raincross Marketing will to create a best-in-class website according to your project specifications. This phase is primarily layout, graphics and site usability, but it does form the foundation of the entire project.
Website Development & Coding
After the website design is finished, the design will be coded so that it can be displayed by browsers like Firefox, Internet Explorer, Google Chrome etc… Some web designers use programs like Adobe’s Dreamweaver to code the design while others manually hand-write code.
At Raincross Marketing we “hand-code” many of our projects following the standards set by the Worldwide Web Consortium (aka W3C). This process allows your website to be “lighter” in design, which is ultimately a benefit to your SEO.
Search Engine Optimization
After the site has been designed and coded, we work to optimize the website for search engines. At Raincross Marketing we understand both the aspect of good design and the benefits of your site being search engine optimized.
At this point our job is to work closely with our clients in an effort to understand their business and what outcome they are looking to produce (customer leads, sales, etc…). With this information we begin the process of keyword research and set about optimizing each page of the site.
In addition to the work performed on the website itself, Raincross offers a variety of “off-page” optimization options. These tasks may include link building, social bookmarking, the creation of citations as well as many other tactics to drive visitors to your website.
As you can see, successful web design is a rather complex topic and frequently requires the work of not only a company that understands “web design”, but also a company that understands the art and science of optimizing your website to attract visitors and rank higher in search results. We invite you to reach out to us when you’re ready to start your project so we can explain our methods in more detail.
After all, a website that receives little traffic won’t help you achieve much in the way of new business.
About The Author: Kevin Watts
Kevin Watts is the founder of Raincross, a premier web design, development and digital marketing agency headquartered in Riverside, CA.
Kevin got his start in online marketing and website design by working for some of the most prominent names in online retail. He's most recognized for helping to start e-commerce retailer Organize.com in 1998, and spent 12 years running the company's e-commerce and online marketing operations. He has been recognized and has received several online retail, marketing and merchandising awards throughout his career.
Kevin grew up in Riverside, CA and graduated from the University of Wyoming. In his spare time, Kevin is an avid fly-fisherman, college football fan, and enjoys spending time with his son Matthew, daughter Kate and wife Lindsey.
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