Articles / Insights

Effective Design Without Sacrificing SEO

From newsletter 090710
Google selected the site we created for Make My Cake as one of 8 exceptional sites to illustrate how to market your business online . Google chose as a site that effectively demonstrates using design and vivid imagery as well as straight-forward content to allow the customer to quickly understand the business offering and follow website cues towards a specific call to action. The effectiveness of is based on the following three considerations;

The Importance of Design and Visuals

Often in an attempt to maximize a site’s SEO business owners end up with a ‘vanilla’ site that looks like other text heavy sites in the industry. This is due to the inclination of most web development companies towards the technical aspects of the site and a belief that online marketing is different from other branding venues. Yet the interaction with the consumer is still the same. Your website is making an impression on your consumer just as any other visual media would. The client is going to form her opinion about your brand and your products from what she sees. While text and coding is an important behind the scene component of a successful site. The visual impression of your product and brand is the single most important front-end component in creating a purchase decision. Just like television and print the content of the piece is important but the visuals are what will shape the perception of your offering.

Walking the line with SEO

Search Engines can only see text. This rule has shaped effective website design for years. Since alt tags and metadata can only go so far in describing images, flash, and other elements of a site many developers have come to the conclusion that a site has to be text heavy to be successful. While there is great value in findable content it is important not to forget the customer once they get to your site. You can have great search engine rankings AND a site that leaves a lasting impression on your market. It takes planning and a strong marketing identity but combining stunning imagery and effective content into a single marketing message can give you results beyond the visit to your site. Your site becomes a touchstone to your brand and products.

Remember Usability

Usability has always been a consideration when building websites, yet, as many sites evolve with an emphasis on the technical aspects of the site the user can once again can be forgotten having to deal with multiple levels of dropdown navigation or the uncertainty of “not knowing where they are” on the site. This pitfall also occurs with design heavy sites. In an attempt to create something new and fresh ‘cool looking’ sites can leave the user wondering what they have to click to get back to the home page. Once again, simple structure, relevant SEO conscious content and stunning design & imagery are the three elements to marketing your company online.