Building a brilliant website today requires both great design and content which meets the SEO requirements of top search engines. The content  featured on all pages of the site should be easy for visitors and search engine robots to read and understand.  We have all been burned and hired a vendor who provided less than what was promised.  To avoid this from happening, when searching for the perfect design partner, we urge our clients to do their due diligence and to meet with several local designers before signing any design contract.

First, it is important to know how they work and if their method fits your expectations. None of us are perfect for all clients. Beware of hiring companies online before first checking out their credentials.  In other words “look before you leap.” Once you have met with potential designers, you can then compare the proposals you receive and make an informed decision.

The way we work with clients:

We believe that brilliant design requires a knowledgeable multi-media staff .  Our staff is made up of programmers, graphic artists and content writers with plenty of the right experience and training to develop and publish a beautiful and functional website.  Inside Design Orlando is dedicated to providing a quality product and open to learning new technology as it is introduced into the marketplace.  Our goal is to have happy clients who will go on and refer us to others. To keep our clients “in the know,” we make it a priority to stay in touch during the design process, and clarify methods involved.  We all work hard during the year to keep our clients happy and satisfied.

The website message:

Remember, the design is just one piece of the picture.  If your overall message on the site pages is all wrong then you will get nowhere.  This is the reason we are extremely careful with the content for each and every page of the site.  We use only original and relevant content, using bulleted lists whenever possible and keeping the amount of content to a minimum. This content (when done correctly) will attract your target audience and build your online brand.

Today we all agree that Google rules the internet. They have their own ideas as to what they consider relevant content. Following Google Guidelines for the SEO checklist for 2018 from MOZ could improve your chances for online success.  Google’s algorithm changes like the wind and because of this, we all must stay connected and keep updated on the changes as they occur.  This continuing education on search engine requirements is a must for all of us in this industry.

The site navigational system (the menu):

The site menu works basically as a tour guide which directs visitors as they reach the site.  No small task, the menu points the way to the information the visitors are looking for. The “sticky” menu is the most popular menu this year.  It replaces the site map feature and stays in place while the viewer can scroll up and down on each page of the site.  The older method of adding a”site map” to the website is rarely used in today’s new designs. New bells and whistles are introduced all the time.  It is important that we use these new tools to keep the websites updated and modern in look and feel.

The novice: a client looking for their first website:

A “novice” is a client with very little knowledge about web design or how the internet works.  We are all familiar with this type of client and we have many of these during the year.  Lots of new businesses are looking for a piece of the pie and they all need a website to identify their brand.  They are new to the methods that work to bring about the results they are expecting.  They have no idea how to get the results they want and they look to us to explain the process.

For the novice, it is very difficult to grasp the premise of a great design which includes search engine optimization requirements.  In the beginning this is almost like a foreign language to them and is quite confusing. We do our best to provide them with enough information to explain the basic process.  If this does not go well, and if the novice is determined to control the entire project, there could be trouble ahead.

Site content requirements for good SEO:

The typical novice may be determined to create their own content for the site (never having done this before).  We request that they hire a content writer if they can afford to do so.  If they insist on writing the content themselves and do not follow any of the rules we have provided, the end product could be a disaster.  We could easily end up with flowery content which has no value for search engines.  At the end of the day we have been hired by the client and there does come a time when the site is completed that we must turn the site over to the client and trust they will learn the rules as time goes on.

More client involvement:  Ala Carte Design Package

Some clients feel they know best on how the website should look.  Our  “ala carte” design package allows those that feel they have design talent to call the shots.  They can provide their own mechanicals, layout and concept to us and we will work for them by the hour.  This working arrangement can become quite expensive for the client.  Most clients leave the design to us and use our default package.  We are completely in charge with this design package and normally it is the most cost-effective choice.

Conclusion:  Brilliant design versus SEO requirements:

As we mentioned earlier, a brilliant website is more than a pretty face.  Above and beyond the beauty and functionality of the website, page content is king. Many important methods done behind the scenes during the design process are hardly noticed. But this additional work, programming, adding meta language and optimizing page content is the “magic sauce” which drives traffic to the website.

Each and every site today is built on a mobile-frienldy platform whether it is custom, HTML or WordPress.  A searching mobile platform, a great design, brilliant to look at, and full of relevant content is necessary for today’s SEO requirements.

News around the office:

Congratulations to My Energy Wellness and Orlando ENT on their brilliant new websites just published this month.

Thanks for stopping by and hurry back for more next time from the Design Wizards of Inside Design Orlando.

Staff Writer