A co-worker recently shared this article.

http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/9481/Top-6-Reasons-You-Should-Fire-Your-Website-Designer.aspx

I have long preached that even ugly websites can sell items. The key is the items for sale, whether E-book’s Information or other products. If people like it they will buy, no matter how ugly the site. While I agree with the article there are two points I have a varying opinion on.

First, in my experience, the lack of clear goals and outcomes for the site is usually what creates the perception the designers holding the site hostage. Many organization form committees to tackle the re-design of a site and the end result is months and months of setbacks and internal battles of which department wins the front page. A Designer often low on the corporate food chain is caught in an internal struggle of doing what is a right and what they are told to do. Which may in cause them to fall prey to some of the no no’s in the article.

Secondly, the article implies that Banner Images are a failure. Hmmm, let me think for a moment. Is that not what AdSense uses? If graphic banners do not sell you or your product. I think you are mistaking. Users eyes are first drawn to the top of your page, a well designed inticing banner will draw and keep users attentions and usually lead them to the rest of your site.  So in this case aesthetics do make a difference.  What if you are an Art Gallery or Artist? Isn’t the “web” a representation of yourself and your work. If you throw up a website from the late 90’s, all text and hyperlinks. Do you think it will help draw your customers?

SEO is important and I am not suggesting that you throw it out the window for a pretty site. However, you can accomplish both.  Anyone aware of a hack going around that had been affecting WordPress and other websites, that when search brought up information on gambling startegies?  All the rest of the relevent information on your page was basically rendered hidden. Which means entire page and source optimization may in fact be more relevant to SEO than the Graphic’s banner or the newly formatted <h1> tag with your Companies name.  So web designers do not panic your jobs are safe for a while. Well except for the CMS’s out there, but that is a topic for another article.

Now let’s talk SEO briefly. The idea of throwing meta-data on a page and winning the war is not going to work. Review everything from hidden source tags, related information, cross links, etc. As a company using SEO as tools to create brand awareness, and lead generation consider this. If you are investing the in the stock market you hire someone or pay very close attention to the ups and downs in the market. The SEO expert will do this too.  They will monitor rankings and keywords and find you the best result for your market. Be aware the best keywords for your industry might not be exactly what you think as an insider.

Just something to consider.

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