Ten Steps To Design a More Marketable Web Site

Surely you’ve heard the old saying, “You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear!” Well, it applies in building web sites. You can’t market a web site that was built poorly. This means good marketing starts even before the web site is designed. Here are 10 ways to design a more marketable web site:
 
STEP 1
Pick a web site address that is easy to type and memorable (it’s called the URL and it’s the word(s) before the .com). You don’t get points from the search engines for having the name of your product in your URL but it might make it easier for people to recall it.
 
STEP 2
When you are building the files that will form the web site, use product names and keywords to name the files. Do not use under-scores, use hyphens instead so it looks like this: http://www.precisionintermedia.com/ten-steps-design-more-marketable-web-site. Why? Because the search engine robots can read hyphens and under-scores differently and you get keyword credit when using hyphens.
 
STEP 3
Content is KING. Make sure every web site and every page you build has content. Specifically, make sure there is compelling text on every page. The battle continues on exactly how much content there should be for the best site optimization but nearly everyone agrees it should never be less than 200 words of text and 10% of those should be important keywords.
 
STEP 4
Follow these rules in layout and design of a web site if you want the site to market well in the search engines:
  • Make sure there is more text content than there is html on the home page.
  • Don’t use frames.
  • Minimize javascript. (No matter how cute that little applet might be, resist it!)
  • No ads.
  • Make sure there is no doubt about what the site is about the minute it comes up on the visitor's screen.
  • Keep all files close to the root directory (search engines don’t like to crawl deep for info).
  • Do not use all caps for text.
STEP 5
Make sure each page has a title that is seven words or less. Don’t use stopper words (of, the, this, and, etc.) in the title. Give every page a unique title on the page that is matched to the meta tag title.
 
STEP 6
Use meta tags. There is loud discussion going on among web site marketers about meta tags. They are responding to the question: Are meta tags dead? In some search engines they might be this week, but that could change in another week and our theory on this is to err on the safe side: put meta tags on each page of a web site. Some search engines will ignore them, others may gobble up part or all of them. And in a week or a month, all of this could change. But in no case will it hurt a web page to have meta tags. So use meta tags and use them right: keep the title tag to less than 60 characters (punctuation and spaces count as a character); keep the description tag to 150 characters; and keep the keyword tag down to not more than 10 keyword phrases.
 
STEP 7
Make sure each page has at least one link internal to the web site and add external links only when they help the viewer understand the site better.
 
STEP 8
Use keywords in your alt tags. Make sure every graphic on the site has an alt tag so folks who surf the net with graphics turned off or the handicapped can still understand your site because of well formulated alt tags.
 
STEP 9
Select a theme and stay with it. One theme is best, so if your site is about widgets it is okay to have that as the theme and have pages following about green, blue and titanium widgets. Do not try to sell widgets and bananas on the same site — have two sites with single themes.
 
STEP 10
Include a link page on the web site. Secure 20 links to your web site from other web sites before you go live on the internet. Make sure those other folks that have a link to you have web site themes that are complementary to your web site theme.
If the web site designer does all 10 of these things, the marketing work is a lot easier and has a much greater potential for success. There are other things you can do also and they WILL change over time. Precision Intermedia stays tuned to what works. We can help you be found in the top search engines.