I am firmly committed to encouraging and assisting companies and organizations to get on web and to do so successfully. Despite dot.bomb debacle, Internet remains most significant mega-trend of our age and its usage continues to grow and spread at an amazing rate.
Notwithstanding its growth, and growth of new skills around it, I continue to be amazed at daily sight of web sites that have not only been designed backwards, but not even been properly finished. Many such sites have been designed by big design and consulting companies charging mega-bucks for their services.
If you want a web site that builds your brand, creates leads or sells your products, services or ideas, first thing you need to ensure is that you have thousands, preferably tens or hundreds of thousands of visitors flocking to your web site each month.
Unless you have a large budget to market URL of your web site, your visitor traffic is going depend heavily on your search engine listings. Whether or not your web site appears in Top 10 results offered by search engines to visitors searching for kind of product, service or information you offer, is a critical issue.
Even with a big advertising budget, majority of visitors to your web site are going to come via search engines.
> Search engines - one thing in common
Search engines vary in algorithms (formula) they use to determine relevance of web sites. But they all have one thing in common - their search results are based on 'keywords' and ‘keyword phrases’ that searchers type into their search boxes.
Despite vital significance of keywords in attracting visitors to a web site, most designers and their clients insist on choosing keywords as last stage of design process! Effectively, they sort out 'look and feel' of site, insert text and then check their text for keywords. If they remember to do so at all.
The bottom line is that, in terms of effectivness, they are designing web sites backwards!
To achieve high search engine rankings, by far most effective web design process involves very carefully choosing keywords and keyword phrases first, and then designing look and content of web site around selected keywords. Keywords and phrases must be selected for every page of site, not just for index or home page.