SEO Friendly Website Design Tips
Internet marketing research should begin before you break new ground with web site design. Take the time to evaluate your competitors and their web sales approach, understand your target audience and the elements that need to come together for an effective SEO friendly web site. “Web site design with marketing in mind” should be your philosophy, and you will need to take a Reverse-Engineering approach to make this happen (more on Reverse-Engineered design shortly.)
Your business web site has a purpose – to sell your line of products or services. It is important to understand what is going through the minds of online shoppers interested in your products, and to know how to appeal to those people. Your best tool is through keyword research. Keyword research will show you exactly what people are searching for on the search engines, and how they perceive your products.
SEO friendly web site design should begin before writing your first line of code.
SEO is a complicated process, but it is a core component to internet marketing success. SEO is so ingrained into web site design, that considerations must be made before even beginning to build your web site. Along with a web design architecture, there also needs to be an SEO architecture. SEO should not be something added on to web site design; rather, it should be a part of it.
Through keyword research, you will learn the buzz words (search phrases) people use when looking for things to purchase online. When you design a web site based on those critical search phrases, you will have a web site perfectly engineered to sell. Consider the following example:
Pretend in our example that our entrepreneur, named John, is a mortgage broker and facilitates home loans. Through keyword research, John finds numerous relevant search terms for his web site. Synonyms such as “home loan,” “mortgage,” “home mortgage,” and “mortgage broker” are all good matches for what John is trying to do. John can see exactly which search phrases are the most popular and appeal to the most possible people. John’s research shows that the term “mortgage” is significantly more popular than “home loan” or other similar keywords.
Next, John must find a domain name for his new business web site. Because “mortgage” was his strongest keyword, he should find a domain using that keyword. But to kill two birds with one stone, John focus on the phrase “home mortgage” because it contains the popular phrase “mortgage” as well as a runner-up “home mortgage.” Through John’s domain name registrar, he finds the domain “johnshomemortgage.com”. John then registers the company name “John’s Home Mortgage” with the State, and proceeds to build a web site full of juicy keywords such as “mortgage” and “home mortgage.” From the perspective of the search engines, the word “mortgage” is everywhere. The domain name has the word “mortgage” within it, the web content is all about “mortgages” and the business name utilizes “mortgage.” There is little doubt to both people and the search engines that “mortgage” is a hot topic on John’s web site. John now has a strategic search engine advantage over someone with the web site “mortgagebrokersally.com.” Sally’s keyword phrase has less overall search engine potential than John’s, because “home mortgage” is more popular than “mortgage broker”. Both John and Sally have a significant advantage over their friend Robert, who operates under “robertscompany.com.”
In the scenario described above, you may not be able to find the perfect domain name. This is common due to the popularity of the web and that any real good domain name is most likely already taken. If you are not happy with the domain names available for your top picked keywords, then just move to your second best keyword and so on until you find something you feel comfortable with. For most industries, there is plenty of good search traffic and ranking available from secondary search phrases.
Reverse-Engineering Web Site Design Process:
- (1) Through keyword research, determine your top several keyword search phrases.
- (2) Derive a domain name from your best keyword picks. If possible, form your professional company name to match accordingly (you don’t have to have DOT-COM in your company name, just focus on keywords.) Don’t take this concept too far, a domain such as johnshomemortgagerefinanceloan.com is tacky.
- (3) Support the content of your web site with your primary keywords. Your company name, domain name, and web content should all be saying the same thing.
Traditional web site design methods produce a “best guess” message. Reverse-Engineering web site design produces a “proven” message, based on what people are really searching for, and how. For many businesses, a Reverse-Engineered web site design approach is not always practical, after all Microsoft does not operate under “OS-Software.com.” If you can capitalize on this strategy then do so, as it will give you an edge over the thousands of competitors who have not through their web designs so completely.