Search Engine Optimization and Web Site Usability

Written by Kristy Meghreblian

Build a Web site andrepparttar people will come. Ha! If it were only that easy! The Web isrepparttar 127963 one sales environment whererepparttar 127964 customer has total empowerment. They have allrepparttar 127965 resources (i.e., your competitors) just a mouse-click away.

Not only are you in competition withrepparttar 127966 millions of other Web sites owners who sellrepparttar 127967 same product/service as you, but you are also competing for users' time and attention. While search engine optimization and submission can bring yourepparttar 127968 traffic you need, only you can ensure that visitors will stay on your site by giving them a reason to want to stay. That is where Web site usability comes in.

What is Web site usability? The International Standards Organization (ISO) defines Web site usability asrepparttar 127969 "effectiveness, efficiency and satisfaction with which a specified set of users can achieve a specified set of tasks in a particular environment." In simpler terms, usability is how efficiently and effectively users can accomplish what they are trying to do when they visit your Web site.

Now that you have an understanding of usability, we'll explainrepparttar 127970 basics of what a Web site should include to makerepparttar 127971 most ofrepparttar 127972 user experience:

Content is king

Let's face it, people visit Web sites for content -- they want information. Sure, it helps if your site is visibly appealing as well. But, withoutrepparttar 127973 right content,repparttar 127974 results ofrepparttar 127975 user experience can be fatal to your business. They simply won't come back.

Here are a few tips to remember in regards to content:

1. Be concise. Research shows that reading from a computer screen is about 25% slower than reading from paper or other print medium. To that end, you will want to edit your writing to sayrepparttar 127976 exact same thing in halfrepparttar 127977 words it would take if you were writing on paper. Also, think back torepparttar 127978 last time you came to one of those really long-winded Web sites whererepparttar 127979 content may have been great, but you still had to scroll and scroll and scroll to get torepparttar 127980 end. It can be a nuisance. So, keep your pages short.

2. Make your content scannable. When people userepparttar 127981 Internet, they are looking at mass amounts of information. Help them get torepparttar 127982 core of what they want by using bulleted items, short paragraphs, and subheadings to make it easier for them to find what they are looking for.

3. Write without error. There is no excuse -- absolutely none -- for poor grammar, typographical errors, and misspellings. If you own a computer, you have access to spell-checking and grammar-checking technologies. Use them. These small details will reflect upon your site. If you don't convey professionalism on your own business, how will you be conveyed to potential clients? Can they trust you with theirs? Before uploading any new content, proofread it. Then, turn it over to someone else for their input.

4. Write as if you were a Public Relations pro. Granted, many of us aren't PR exec's, but you should know how to market your business. Userepparttar 127983 lingo that is most appropriate for your business. While you want to provide information, your main goal is still one thing: to sell. So, write to sell.

5. Maximize your keywords. As part ofrepparttar 127984 search engine optimization process, you went to great lengths to select keywords and phrases that are most appropriate for your business. Be sure to use them whenever possible (without being overtly redundant) in your content.

6. Refresh, refresh, refresh. Web sites should be updated on a regular basis -- don't let them go stale. Add new products/services, update users with new information and tools, do what you can to change your content and keep users coming back for more.

7. Know your audience. Since most audiences vary in terms of experience level with both your product/service and their experience level withrepparttar 127985 internet, you will want to simplify things more than ever. You don't want to talk to yourself - make sure potential clients understand your product/service. The best way to do this is to create content that is informative, yet easy to understand for evenrepparttar 127986 newest ofrepparttar 127987 newbies. Web site design

Site Maps: A Force to be Reckoned With

Written by Kristy Meghreblian

Another important component of search engine optimization isrepparttar use of site maps. If you want visitors -- and search engine spiders -- to find every page on your Web site, a site map can be your biggest ally especially if you have a lot of content on your site (and if you’ve been reading allrepparttar 127962 advice on our site, you should know by now thatrepparttar 127963 more content you haverepparttar 127964 better your chances are for top ranking).

So, what is a site map? Basically, it is a navigation tool. It lets visitors know what information you have, how it is organized, where it is located with respect to other information, and how to get to that information withrepparttar 127965 least amount of clicks possible. A good site map is more than a hyperlinked index, which only providesrepparttar 127966 user with a list of alphabetically arranged terms.

Site maps also provide lots of nutritious spider food for search engine robots that crawl your site and eventually index it. Oncerepparttar 127967 robot gets torepparttar 127968 site map, it can visit every page on your entire site because allrepparttar 127969 information is clearly indicated on that one page. However, in order for your site map to work most effectively, you must include a link to your site map inrepparttar 127970 navigation on every page of your site.

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