Web Design and SEO: Function or Fashion?
There are two philosophies on web design and each theory presents valid points. One asserts that if the website design is unappealing it doesn’t matter how well it shows up on a search engine it will not build trust with the user and they will move on to a site that does. I personally feel this way, especially if I’m dealing with online payments. If your site looks like an 8th grader put it together I’m probably not going to give you my credit card information…Just saying. The other philosophy is that it doesn’t matter how good your site looks if it’s out there in cyberspace where no one can find it. We can combine these two theories and design one powerhouse of a website. Anything worth doing is worth doing right and in this day and age with so much competition everyone must give their best if they expect to stay in business. Here are some tools we recommend for both getting that killer website look as well as having it healthy for Search Engine optimization (SEO).
Everyone has to start with purchasing their domain and deciding on what hosting company they want to use. It is most important to make sure that your hosting can handle the amount of traffic you estimate you will receive. Get a plan that is scalable. According to ConsumerRankings.com the top ten web hosting picks of 2014 include GoDaddy.com, Yahoo small business, and BlueHost.com. The top ten list can be found here.
Before you choose a hosting you should first evaluate your business’ specific needs. Doing so can save you a lot of money. When choosing a hosting speed, reliability, and security are the three most important things to keep in mind. To learn more about how to choose a hosting, especially for WordPress, check out this article on wpbeginner.com.
Make sure the domain is something that is relevant and easy to market. People aren’t going to remember a long and complicated domain so keep it short.
Web Hosting Options
WordPress Web Design
To me, there is no better content management system for a small business WordPress. It combines a sleek look, user friendly back end and SEO management to make your website beautiful and easy for you to keep current. WordPress offers a smorgasbord of plugins and themes and since the back end is so easy to control getting information to your customers and clients is ridiculously fast.
FUN FACT: Did you know that Playstation, The Who, and Pac-man are using WordPress?
My advice? Spend the extra $30 bucks and get a theme that gives you some good options. You aren’t a web developer and that’s okay with the array of user friendly themes that WordPress offers. With no additional software needed, WordPress allows you affordable web development. The construction of WordPress websites is created without extra HTML code that Google finds very appealing for indexing and every page is malleable so we can tailor all information to augment your website’s SEO. WordPress websites are also beautiful in a mobile design. Almost everyone has a smartphone now and almost 46% of people use their mobile devices over a computer to search the web. This means that having a website that is made for the mobile device is extremely important.
Here are some places we recommend:
Plugins give you customization
Plugins give you the ability to customize your site, connect to the rest of the web, and build your SEO. There are a few must-have plugins that I can’t finish this blog without mentioning. Yoast is the best SEO plugin because it allows for specific control of page titles and meta descriptions per page/per post. WP-Cache boosts your site’s speed especially if it is heavy in images and scripts. The top ten must-have plugins can be found at Forbes.com.
Shopify for e-Commerce
People shop because it is fun, so your e-commerce website should be fun and user friendly. Shopifyis a great e-commerce option because it gives you the ability to scale your online store with your budget. It also has built in payment processing and a customizable look. With user friendly back-end options Shopify is incredibly easy to use.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
This is where function truly comes into play. If your site cannot be found on a search engine your customers won’t even get to your fashionable website. To boost SEO make sure the site’s homepage description and titles are all filled out with relevant wording that your target market would be searching for. Also do the same for each secondary page. Make sure that your permalinks are labeled correctly so that your page is found easily in relevant searches. Make sure images have alt attributes and descriptions. Be sure to install Google Analytics, and Google Webmaster Tools to get feedback on how to improve your site.
A big part of the Google’s algorithm now is your presence on social media. To increase this, it is important that you own your name on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+, LinkedIn, and every other social platform you can. This will help give your site authority in the searches and help the consumer find you.
Utilize outsourcing to help you get over the initial hump of launching your web store. Socially Present is the web marketing company that will help take your business to that next level with crisp, clear web design that will get your customers to the information they seek quickly. We offer affordable web design tailored to your need. Contact us for a free evaluation to layout your web options. Also, Leave your comments and questions below. We love the feedback and are more than happy to answer any questions. Be Socially Present!