The last thing you want to do for your business is to spend the time and resources on designing and developing a great new website and then not have anyone be able to find it. One of the best things you can do for your site in order to help your customers and prospects find it, is to prioritize search engine optimization (SEO). This does not mean you have to a “Plain Jane” text-only site, it does mean that you have to steer clear of some design approaches that impede search engine optimization. Our Seattle web design team has put together a top five web design mistakes for SEO.

Splash Page for Your Home Page

Splash pages (the use of primarily graphics or flash with one or two links like “click here”) rank number one on our Seattle web design teams list of things not to do. It is one of the biggest mistakes you can make from a from a search engine optimization perspective for a few different reason. Your homepage will be one of your website’s highest ranking pages and this is the page that gets crawled most often by web spiders. The search engines will not be able to properly index your site without proper linking structure to internal pages for the spider to follow. The lack of HTML-based text is also a big problem as your homepage should include content that is rich with target keywords.

Image and Flash Content

Web spiders cannot read text that is embedded in a graphic image or Flash. So you can write great keyword rich copy but when you embed it in a graphic the search engines can no longer find it.

Use of Flash Menus

Flash menus might look cool but the search engines are unable to see them. And, as mentioned above, the search engines will not be able to follow your linking structure and thus will not index your site properly.
Limited Content on Pages

Now we all know that your website is not the place that you want to write your next novel, but you should keep in mind when designing your site to allot enough space for copy to be able to give adequate coverage to each of your priority keywords. Fifteen words of copy on each page are probably not enough to achieve the keyword density you will need for search engine optimization.

“Click Here” Link Anchor Text

Unless you want to be ranked high for “Click Here” or “Learn More” in the search engines you should focus on using the keywords that you want to optimize on in your link anchor text.

Feel free to contact our Seattle web design team for more information or search engine optimization best practices.

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