In a previous blog article, we discussed the importance of using keyword research to develop a solid information architecture that is friendly to both users and Search Engine spiders. We are now going to expand on that article and explain why it is important for your web designer and SEO consultant to work together and design and optimise your website at the same time.
The website may not be indexed
One of the biggest mistakes a website developer may make is to use flash or java script technologies which can be seen as SEO suicide as they may not be crawlable by Search Engines. Although Search Engines like Google are much better at reading and indexing Flash content, most SEO companies still recommend having an HTML-style navigation and content template.
Another common problem is that the website may be designed to be image heavy but Search Engine spiders can only read text so image alt tags are recommended. Text is considered as food for Search Engine spiders and as such the more text your website has the happier the spiders will be but there needs to be a balance between design, text and images and an SEO expert will help you find that balance.
Redesign is time consuming
Redesigning a website navigation structure to be SEO friendly can be a very time consuming task as new landing pages may need to be created, URLs may need to be amended and page titles, heading tags and meta description may need to be changed to become SEO synchronised. This is on top of the original work that needed to be done to create the initial website.
In order to make your content more interesting and Search Engine Spider friendly it would be advisable to incorporate variations of the keywords throughout the menus, links and page text. By hiring an SEO specialist to work with your web designer, the keyword research for the website will start to form the navigation structure for the website and this will minimise any need for a redesign.
Redesign is costly
Hiring a web designer or even utilising a web designer’s skills in-house to redesign a website to be SEO friendly can be a very costly process depending on how much work needs to be done. Resources allocated to the redesign project could be used elsewhere and an approvals will need to be sought which may slow up the process and add to the final cost of the project.
An SEO company will work with a web designer at the start of the design process and help map out a navigation structure based on specific keyword research, create landing pages that are SEO friendly and make sure there are no SEO obstacles in the original design.
Loss of link equity
If an SEO consultant decides that a redesign is needed and the URL structure is changed then this can lead to a loss of link equity. Link building is an important part of your SEO strategy. A Search Engine sees website linking back to your website as a validation of the website and ranks it more favourably. Links are like wine, they get stronger and better with age.
By changing the URL structure to make your website more SEO friendly, means a loss of link equity unless you set up 301 redirects from your old URLs which will take time and should only be a temporary measure. You also run the risk of Search Engine penalties if you start redirecting pages that are not relevant to their destinations.
Loss of potential income
By hiring an SEO expert to work with a web designer from the onset, this mean that the website and specific landing pages are targeting specific keywords related to your business and are starting to be indexed for the right keywords from the date your website is launched.
These are just several reasons why it’s important for a web designer to work with an SEO company. Creating an SEO-friendly infrastructure at the start of the design process will ensure that your newly launched website can kick off the SEO process, start generating traffic and contributing to your bottom line and online return on investment.