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If you ponder “How do I make my website work better?” you must consider that an understanding of why any website fails to deliver is an important ingredient to your success.

WHY WEBSITES FAIL TO DELIVER
#1   It is common for a small business to develop the narrative about their business and then decide on keywords from their narrative.  THIS IS WRONG!!  Your first step in building a website should be to determine 50 ways or more someone might search for the products or services you provide.  What words will they type in the search?  The second step should be to develop 4 to 6 word phrases that are called key search phrases.  Longer phrases are better than short ones.  Keep your phrases in the first person.  (Use wording as the person searching would use.)  As an example use “our website” instead of “your website”.

#2   A common mistake is to put “we sell widgets” in the narrative when in reality your potential customer will not type in “we sell widgets”.  They might type in “I want to buy a widget”.  Your narrative then should be; If you say “I want to buy a widget” we have blue ones and red ones.  The website that has wording closest to the actual  searched phrase will come up first.

#3  Now build your narrative using key phrases throughout  your site.  Usually it is recommended that you not use more that 2 to 3 long key phrases per page so as not to disrupt the natural flow of your narrative.

#4  One common mistake made by small business and professional website builders  alike is to forget where you want the website to come up. (This only applies to small businesses with a radius less than 100 miles).  They put their own town in their keywords and not other nearby towns.  In effect the website is registered for local  and doesn’t go anywhere but the home town.

#5   A common mistake is to have  commonly searched words in the narrative but not in the keywords.   A word must be in the keywords first.  Then you can give it strength by having it in your narrative.  You can give it more strength by repeating that word in your narrative a few times.  It is unclear whether Google still gives weight to bolder or italicized keywords.  It is a practice that may be still worth while.  Two or more keywords together in your narrative becomes a key phrase.  Listing key phrases as key phrases will make your website work better.

#6 Town names vs.zip codes.  We recommend that you put your town name and zipcode in your keywords.  For other towns in your trade area the town names & zipcodes are somewhat interchangeable.  However if you are having difficulty in getting 1st place ranking both zip code and town name might make your website work better.

#7  The build it and forget it mistake.  Often small business websites are neglected for long periods of time.  One factor for ranking is fresh & relevant content but even more relevant than that is for you to periodically search relevant phrases with different zip codes and town names in your area.  It’s helpful to make a list so you don’t forget to check some of your best key phrases.  If you don’t come up #1 ask yourself why not or ask us if you are one of our subscribers.

#8   Domain name.  If you have not selected a domain name try to find the most important keyword or words and make them a part of your domain name.  Example:  If you are in the concrete business consider a domain like “concretecontractor.com” If that is already taken consider adding your business name.  “concretecontractorjohnsoninc.com”.  If you are already using a domain name you could buy an additional name with good keywords and link it to your site.  This will give you an edge over most competitors.

#9  Smart phones.  Don’t forget to make your website readable on smart phones.  This involves making sure your links are visible and that your main information is visible as well.  Double check to make sure your text and background colors contrast.  Above all make sure that your website is formatted to be seen on smart phones.

​#10  The most important ranking factor according to Google is to have good and pertinent content in your website.  A search for “widgets” will give some weight to the site that mentions widget the most times determining that that site has the most information about widgets. A search for “Where can I buy a widget?”  would give preference to the site having  the closest key phrase.

​The above material is developed for the benefit of small businesses only by Internet Enhancement.  This material cannot be copied and distributed.  Any such distribution will be in violation of copyright laws.


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