Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Forget SEO

Forget SEO for a moment

Sometimes SEO is not the problem with your site. Web site viewers can be unpredictable beasts. So your site must have certain aspects worked out before SEO will make a difference. A few months ago a new client came to me and said, "We need more search engine traffic." So I took a look at the client's web site and I said, "Maybe, but first, you need a new web site." The site looks like it was created back in the 90’s. As it turned out the client actually had a fair bit of traffic but he wasn't getting many calls.

At that time he was selling only over the phone. When he did get calls he got a lot of questions. People wanted to know where he got his products and whether they had warranties, etc. When I see web sites like this I think of that old phrase 'Man …. This site sucks'.  It just won't work. It doesn't matter how much traffic you get to your site. It's not going to succeed. "Who built this site," I asked this client? "Your nephew, the office manager?" "Not quite the office manager," he told me. "It was Denny, the warehouse manager." Ok, I guess it’s different if your warehouse manager is also your web designer.

You need to honest with yourself about this issue. Is your site unprofessional looking and downright ugly? An ugly or unprofessional looking site WILL NOT work well. Your site is your face to the world and if it looks like it was built by an amateur it conveys the impression that your business is run by amateurs. When I am surfing for a product or service and I see an amateurish looking web site, I just click to the next. This may have been the best deal and the most reputable company on the planet but come on my first impression is just awful. Do you put any stock in the guy selling you a gym membership at the same time he is smoking a cigarette. Really… really come on.     

Try this….

It’s an experiment. Find five competitors to your site and load them in different tabs in your web browser then load yours in another window and move from tab to tab viewing each site in turn. Now be honest would you buy from your site? If the answer is no then you need a change. It doesn't matter how much you SEO optimize your site. If it doesn't create the right impression, “it aint gonna work”.  If your site is confusing or makes it hard to find what you are looking for then SEO optimizing the site may not be the most important thing right now. You may need to start with a new site.

There is no point bringing people to the site to get frustrated and leave. These things need to be mentioned because they really are critical. 

Steve Steinberger


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