Business owners and marketing “experts” tend to focus heavily on “web design” when they think about getting a website for their respective business. This makes perfect sense, to the view of an inexperienced online marketer, but in actuality the design of a website doesn’t mean much of anything if you don’t have visitors (potential customers) coming to the website.
Don’t get me wrong, web design is crucial, but the view that just getting a website running and looking “good” is going to help your business is usually fundamentally wrong. Sure, if you already have a brand presence and people are search for you specifically, then a landing page or web page can help, but just a flaccid website won’t get you an extra customers.
This is where online marketing really starts off, when you have a business that is running, you have established business processes and sell a good product or give a good service, and you want to reach those extra customers that are searching for their product online. People use Search Engines (like Google, Yahoo, and Bing) to find what they need. Using strategic and tactic methods to get your website favored and ranked highly by those search engines will get you in front of paying customers and help you to increase your revenue and profits.
But how do you do that? Well, the process is called “Search Engine Optimization”. It’s fairly complex but has basic principles, including:
- Making sure your website can be accessed by search engines.
- Making sure you are marking your pages appropriately for their target terms.
- Research the keywords and key phrases that your target customers use, and utilizing those in your sites and pages.
- Outreach to fellow webmasters, industry news sources and key “influencers” to get your website and company mentioned.
If you don’t know how to go about doing this, consider getting an SEO company that does this sort of thing for a living. The web is littered with SEO and Internet marketing companies, so be sure to pick one that has some good reviews and perhaps someone that comes personally recommended for you.
There and Back Again – Web Design
I know I started this article off by saying that web design can be effectively useless without marketing tactics, and that is still true, but I will finish by saying that without proper web design, your marketing can fail before it starts.
Yes, you heard it right, both are crucial and without one, the other can be relatively useless. I mentioned that if you build a beautiful site but no one sees it, then what’s the point? Well, conversely, if you get thousands of customers to a site, and they can’t use it properly or it looks so terrible as to tarnish your brand, then what good have you done?
So keep this things in mind when setting your company up with a website. You need both a good user experience and beautifully designed website, and a proper marketing campaign to reach potential customers and have them retained as paying and happy clients, ready to spread the word of your good work!
Special thanks to Mike at StatenIslandSEO.org for his help in preparing this article.