Friday, March 18, 2005

Don't Do The Wrong Things

I've just taken on a new client and realized there is something important I should say here.

In a couple of past posts I've mentioned that the way to have a successful web site is to have quality content, easy navigation and a good site map. But, there is a problem with this. I forgot to mention that you must avoid doing the wrong things.

I was reminded of this because my new client's web site, although a good site, is packed with things that prevent it from doing well in search results. For example...

It uses frames. Google has indexed the home page, which consists of four frames. The Google search results have four pages--one from each frame. So Google has a link to the header graphic, the navigation menu, the footer information, and the main body. It's great that they have the text from the main body indexed, but it's a dead end. There are no links and no contact information.

Don't use frames.

Even getting past the problem of frames, every content page on the site has the same page title, the name of the company. The page title is one of the most important factors used to determine the topic of the page. It needs to provide a good description of the content, and it must include the important key words for the page.

This is a company that provides services to the local market. But, there is no way for search engines to tell where they are located. In this case each page that describes a service offered, should also include the address of the company. This could be a part of another key feature this web site lacks--a call to action.

Don't forget to include your phone number on EVERY page!

Don't forget to tell visitors to your web site what you want them to do. Do you want them to call you? Do you want them to request a white paper, literature or a price quote? Make it easy to do.


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