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Big Website Mistakes

 

Common websites mistakes that WILL cost you money

Do you want to be taken seriously?  Do you want credibility with prospective customers? 

If so, you need to avoid the deadly mistakes many small business owners make when planning their most important marketing collateral.   Here are some of the common statements I hear from business owners who simply don't understand how expensive it can be to get their website strategy wrong.

SEO Case Study

 

Getting to number 1 on Google with zero budget

Upper Coomera Church is a small church with less than 100 members.  Their new website was to be their only real marketing tool and they had no budget to spend on SEO.  Within weeks of being launched however www.uppercoomerachurch.com was ranked at number 1 on Google and Yahoo for the chosen key words.  This is the case study explaining how we did it.

Step 1. Keywords.  For the uninitiated, keywords are words listed in a "meta tag" in the underlying HTML code of EACH PAGE of your website. These meta tags are looked at by search engines to establish what words the site owner thinks users will search on or "Google" to find the information the website provides.

The keywords need to be relevant to the content of the particular page and the search engine will compare the keywords with the headings and content in the page to confirm their relevance to any search.

Each page of your website should have its own keyword list based on the content of that page.  There is no value in listing hundreds of keywords in the meta tag.  If the keywords are not in the content of the specific page they will be ignored or in worst case scenario treated as an attempt to spam the browser and result in a lower ranking.

Step 2 - Relevant and Readable Content. A website needs to be attractive and readable to your target market as well as to search engines. At this point in time Google can't interpret images or flash presentations although I'm sure they are working on it. That doesn't mean you shouldn't use them, but you need to balance graphics with text. In other words, the website should make sense without the images and images should be used only to enhance the effect of your text.

Upper Coomera Church Front Page

Above UpperCoomeraChurch.com

The main content of the front page should contain the most relevant key words in the first paragraph. This is not contrived but the natural result of making the content relevant to the target audience. By using a CMS to build your website you make it easy to add to and modify content on a regular basis. Where relevant, a "Coming Events" list on the front page (linked to a full events calendar) also helps readers and changes front page content daily.

Step 3 - Headings. Too often web designers ignore the HTML H1 and H2 tags that are designed to tell search engines what text is a heading. Using BOLD, underline, italics or colours may make your headings look good to human eyes but it is the H1 and H2 tags that signify to Google the importance of the content in your headings.

Upper Coomera Church Headings

Above - How Google sees the Headings in the Upper Coomera Church Website

If your chosen keywords are relevant to your content it should be easy to insert the most relevant keywords in the H1 and H2 headings on the lead article on the front page. This emphasizes the relevance of these keywords to search engines.

Step 4 Meta Description. The meta description is the text you see in the search engine for each listed site when you do a search. This is a statement that the site owner is making to establish the relevance of the website for the words used in the search to both the person doing the search, and to the search engine itself. Once again the meta description should be unique for each page of your site and should contain the most important keywords for that page.

Step 5. Links. Search engines look at the number of RELEVANT links from other sites back to yours as a measure of your sites relevance. Subscribing to Link Farms creates hundreds of links that are NOT relevant and this can actually lower you sites ranking. The quickest way to create relevant links is to list your site in online directories many of which are free. The first listing should be on Google Local if applicable.  In the case of a Church website there are many local community directories and church website directories available.

Social Media also provides great linking opportunities. Each time you add new content such as a new podcast you should announce the update on Twitter and Facebook etc with a link back to the site.

As you can see, ranking is about content, keywords and links. Decide on what keywords you want to target, include those words in the site keyword meta tags, meta description, content and headings, and then tell the online world about your site. It is not rocket science or voodoo and should not be expensive if your website is well designed. All of the above can be achieved with our $1300 Web Essentials package.

 

Joomla Web Development

 

A CMS Website makes sense for both small business and large enterprises

Websites With Purpose is the home of Rod Farrell.  I'm a Gold Coast Queensland based website developer with  5 years experience developing websites using Joomla CMS, and prior to that, 10 years of HTML development. My team and I also design and develop Wordpress sites where appropriate.  Wordpress is a cms that is more focused toward blog sites.

My philosophy is that your website must deliver results.  Results are more important than the technology which is why I consider myself a website developer and not just a Joomla developer.  I use Joomla CMS more often than other tools simply because it allows the rapid development of SEO friendly sites. Also, on completion the owner of a cms website can take control of the site and manage the site content without being dependent on a web developer.

SEO - For a site to deliver, it has to be seen by Google. 

This means that your website must be search engine friendly and this needs to be designed in, not tacked on afterwards.  Modern CMS websites do this very well BUT layout and structure are critical and make an enormous difference to how Google sees your site.  Below is an example of a real website that I recently replaced.  It looks great to the human eye, but is based 100% on graphics.  The target market will never see this:

Because all Google can see is this:

Now this is not faked - it is a real live website that the owner paid good money for.  And it is not unique.  Many sites are designed using 100% images or Flash. Unfortunately because the website consists of graphics only, the only way any traffic ever reaches this site is through very expensive adwords.  This is a classic example of a developer focusing on pretty graphics and forgetting the whole purpose of the website in the process.  IF NO-ONE CAN FIND YOUR SITE IT DOESN'T MATTER WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE!

 

Website Maintenance

In addition to developing new websites we are also happy to take over maintenance of "orphaned" Joomla sites - that is, sites that the original developer is no longer supporting.  This includes upgrading to the latest Joomla version (important for ensuring you have the latest security patches) and making sites compatible with the latest browsers.  Sites optimised for IE6 (or rather hacked around to make them work in that non-compliant browser) often don't display correctly in modern browsers.

Whatever your Website needs, give me a call on 0414 909 759. 

Marketing Your Business With Your Website

 

Your website is your most potent marketing tool - don't waste it

To be successful your website has to appeal to two visitor groups. 

  • Prospective Customers and,
  • Search Engines. 

If you fail to grab the attention of either of these groups your website is doomed to fail. 

Building a website just for Google will get you lots of visitors who never do anything. On the other hand, building a website that grabs the imagination of your visitors and compels them to get out their credit cards is of no value if Google never sends you any traffic. 

Yes, you can buy traffic using adwords, but Google will charge you the highest possible price per click if it doesn't like your site.

CMS -The Only Choice for Business

 

Traditional Websites only work if you are prepared to throw money at SEO.      Lots of money.     Continuously.

This is because your website only works if people see it. You need traffic. This comes either from paid advertising or a strong SEO strategy or both. A key part of SEO is having new content added to your site on a regular basis. The cost of paying web developers to update your content is prohibitive and inefficient.

This is where Content Management Systems like Joomla come into their own.

You can make changes to your website content any time and with no technical skills at all. Better still, you can authorise any one of your employees to do it for you.

  • You can update your website from anywhere in the world.
  • You can update your website any time, from anywhere AT NO COST.
  • You can change the keywords in your site metatags as easily as changing the content – (If that last one was a bit too technical just take my word for it – it is a good thing.)

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