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Higher search engine rankings
Not only will a user struggle to navigate an unusable and invalid site, so will a search engines spider. If your documents are marked up correctly and fast to load then a search engine will reward your web pages with better listings. Why serve a user a scruffy and hard to read web page when a perfectly readable and accessible page exists?
CSS is an extremely flexible and powerful way of styling a website. All formatting is contained within one text file meaning a new design overhaul is very cost effective and fast to turn around from a designers point of view, meaning lower costs to business. If done correctly, CSS can degrade gracefully in older browsers which lack support into a perfectly readable document which is beauty of following web standards.
Lower business costs
A website following web standards is a more efficient and smaller website in terms of file sizes and bandwidth.
This translates into reduced hosting costs. Changing contractors can be a problem if code is written with proprietary software that creates untidy or browser specific HTML. Following a set of standards means contractors can hit ground running and give you far better value for money.
Author of Optimising Your Website, and an IT Consultant for local UK Government and various European Union initiatives, Edward Clarke specialises in website accessibility, css, web standards and search engine optimisation. Visit Edward's consultancy website and his blog for more information.