Marketing Forum Best Practice Web Design, SEO and PPC


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This presentation was delivered to the Marketing Group in Nottingham. It contains an overview of the main aspects of online marketing - building an effective website and driving traffic using search engine marketing (search engine optimisation - SEO and Google Adwords pay per click)

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Marketing Forum Best Practice Web Design, SEO and PPC

  1. 1. Best practice web design, content & functionality By Ann Stanley MD of Anicca Solutions Ltd | |
  2. 2. About Ann Stanley • MD of Anicca Solutions Ltd based in Leicester (Business Link accredited website development & online marketing consultancy) • Currently provides consultancy and training to a range of clients and other agencies • 16 years marketing experience (Chartered Marketer), >6 years online marketing experience • Google AdWords Professional • Developed and teaches on the EMDA Web Academy Program, also at IAB, Search Academy and other events • Business Link trainer on the new Business Steps program | |
  3. 3. Agenda Introduction • How important is your website to your business • Strategic overview to planning your website • 3 conflicting approaches to developing a website Is your website performing? • Comparing your website performance and importance • Is your content indexed in Google? • Use of Google Analytics - does your site measure up? What you need to know? • Design • Functionality • Content How design, functionality and content influence visibility in the Search Engines • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) process • Can the search engine access your site? • Keyphrase research • Writing optimised text • 3rd party website & how to develop links • Submission | |
  4. 4. The importance of the internet | |
  5. 5. How important is your website to your business Score Customer types Purpose of website Offline equivalent 0-3 Majority of regulars, repeat & Business card: recommendations (R-Factor) •Contact details & Map Passing trade 4-5 Large R-factor Brochure site: Some new customers (eg from •Credibility advertising) •Check out offer <50% enquiries or bookings have •Contact details & Map seen or used the website 6-7 Small R-Factor, so rely on new Shop-window: business •Lead generation & enquiries Need to advertise regularly •Most customers use & >50% enquiries & bookings have enquire through the site seen or come from the website •Credibility & information 8-10 Mainly new customers Transactional: Current customers also use •Lead generation & online website to book marketing >80% of enquiries and bookings •Enquiries, registrations & come from website booking engine •Email marketing •Integration with back-office | |
  6. 6. Strategic overview for planning your site Site situation analysis Business objectives Clients’ requirements Site objectives Marketing objectives Constraints Strategy/Tactics Structure/navigation Design Content Functionality Usability Improving sales conversion | |
  7. 7. The 3 “conflicting approaches” used in web design Design – first impressions These approaches are counts often used by different types of web designers or developers and can conflict with each other Functionality – Content – what what the site the site says to does for the the user and user and your search engines business | |
  8. 8. Is your current site performing? | |
  9. 9. “How to look good naked” beauty parade – most people have the wrong image of themselves (and their websites!) | |
  10. 10. Score your site as compared to others SCALE 1-4 = you consider the site poorly designed or unprofessional 5 = you would not bother to browse the site 6 = you would browse the site 8 = you would consider buying or using the service from this site 5 8 | |
  11. 11. Importance of your website vs how you perceive the site (performance) 10 Best Plot your importance No more score vs your effort quality score required Site 5 Performance Need to Quality matches develop a importance – new site not worth investing Poor 1 1 5 10 Importance to Not Very your business important important | |
  12. 12. Is my content listed in Google? – Yes! This technique also allows you to see how your web developer has set-up your urls, titles and descriptions for your site (key for being found in the search engines) | |
  13. 13. Is my content listed in Google? – No! These sites have been constructed in Frames and Flash, technologies which can't be indexed (or spidered) by the search engines | |
  14. 14. Get free site metrics from Google | |
  15. 15. The performance of your website - targets Offline Online advertising advertising Website >2% >50% browse register <50% bounce (ie >1% book online exit) | |
  16. 16. Do you need to invest in your website? Offline Online advertising advertising No traffic due to poor search engine positions Website <1% call or email Less than 50% browse >50% exit due to poor No online design or Enquiry/ usability Booking/Shop | |
  17. 17. Reasons to develop a new site? Poor visibility in the search engines • The site is built in flash or frames and cannot be spidered by the search engines • The site has other barriers to the search engine spiders, eg JavaScript navigation, complex web addresses (urls) from pages generated by a database, complex directory and page structure, password protected content, hosted outside of the UK etc • The site does not have any optimised content or tags (ie they do not contain the keyphrases used by customers) and/or there are no suitable pages or space for the additional text Design • The site looks dated, images and branding looks tired and it is not attractive to users • The site has poor “calls for action”, so the site gets traffic but no registrations or sales enquiries • The site has poor navigation and is difficult to use Content • If the content cannot be easily updated, or you have to go back to the web developer to change the text, incurring additional costs and delays Functionality • No online sales process (shopping cart) or poor enquiry process • No or poor customer registration process – limiting the number of enquiries to the sales team • No email functionality to send latest offers or deals to the customers | |
  18. 18. Design – first impressions count! | |
  19. 19. Design and Branding • In many circumstances your web site will be the first point of contact • First Impressions Count! - Newcomers, and existing customers, will form an impression very quickly • 3-5 seconds? • At a subconscious level • It has to communicate your brand values, eg What do you want your site to say about you? • Target audience and positioning • Brand values • Corporate image • Relevance • Consistency | |
  20. 20. Ecommerce site aimed at parents and kids | |
  21. 21. Ecommerce site aimed at techies | |
  22. 22. Different Elements of the design Main Branding navigation “Calls for Log-in action” Search Search on every results page from database | |
  23. 23. Zen Garden – example of using cascading style sheets (CSS) | |
  24. 24. Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) • Enables different style elements to be controlled across the site: • Typography • Backgrounds • Borders/margins • Structural elements, e.g. navigation • Benefits: • More control over layout • Quicker loading pages • Quicker development & updates • Easier to support multiple platforms eg pda • Allows use of different font sizes and colours for accessibility • Better for search engines (page layout data stored in CSS not diluting page text) | |
  25. 25. Other features of the Website and Content Management System Website Management • Web management system (WMS) allowing modification of the design and content with search engine friendly web addresses (urls) • Database for clients, news, events, PR and testimonials • PDF management – allowing users to download brochures • Enquiry/registration form or brochure request Technical • Hosting included for the first year (£200/annum subsequent years) • Free web statistics and metrics (using the server metrics and/or links to Google Analytics) | |
  26. 26. Website Management Systems – that allow you to modify elements of the layout, design, menus & footer | |
  27. 27. Layout Manager for modifying elements of the layout, design, menus and footer | |
  28. 28. Layout Manager for modifying elements of the layout, design, menus and footer | |
  29. 29. Try it for yourself - our demo site | |
  30. 30. Try it for yourself – our demo site | |
  31. 31. Try it for yourself – our demo site | |
  32. 32. Functionality – what the site can do for you and your customers | |
  33. 33. Choosing the content and functionality Options Basic Add-on or 3rd party Fully integrated Functionality (Dynamic) •Page for each product •Home page •Shopping cart •Database driven or service •Who are we? •Room booking •Integrated with back •Stock and prices office •What do we do? •Online quotes •News or offers •Customer database •Where are we? •News feeds •Contact us by email or leave message •Vacancies •Register & login • Product database •Subscribe (eg to •Useful links and •Mortgage calculators •E-commerce newsletter) information •Archive of articles, •Search facility •E-procurement •Contact details newsletters etc •FAQ •Recommend a friend •E-learning •Demos •Banners and other •Online recruitment adverts •Client list •Calendar •Pop-up offers •Press pack •Forums and chat rooms •Call back •Terms & conditions •Online help •Personalisation of •Download articles and content pdf files •Site map | |
  34. 34. Using your site as a sales tool – searching the customer database | |
  35. 35. Using your site as a sales tool – searching the customer database | |
  36. 36. Clicking into a customer profile | |
  37. 37. Clicking into a customer profile | |
  38. 38. Ability to create your own customer registration forms (with the corresponding database) | |
  39. 39. Ability to create your own customer registration forms (with the corresponding database) | |
  40. 40. Content – what your site says to your customers (and the search engines) | |
  41. 41. Content – Factors to consider • Relevance to target audience • Structure • Language • Tone • Update frequency • Self-managed content (can sometimes be search engine unfriendly) • Members area • Calls to Action | |
  42. 42. Content Management System | |
  43. 43. Edit the page content | |
  44. 44. See changes on the live site | |
  45. 45. An Introduction to Search Engine Marketing | |
  46. 46. How design, functionality & content influence visibility in the search engines • Design • Images can’t be indexed • Certain technologies such as Flash, Frames and JavaScript can’t be indexed • Design can limit the space for optimised text, or too much text can spoil the design • Functionality • Certain database functionality such as dynamic urls, ecommerce sites and some content management systems can’t be indexed • Content • Amount, structure and keyphrases within the content (on-page factors) all have significant influence on positions achieved for keyphrases used by searcher • Content consists of the visible content (ie elements seen by the user) and the content in the code and tags (meta-data) both are important for search engine optimisation • Search engine optimisation is the process used to build or modify a site to improve its rankings in search engines for the keyphrases used by customers | |
  47. 47. Google - Search Results Search using Keyphrase Pay Per Click Advertising Natural/Organic Search | |
  48. 48. Search Engine Marketing Techniques Pay Per Click - Paid inclusion Search Engine Strategic link sponsored links & Trusted Feed Optimisation & building, 3rd submission party websites Direct feed from The process of Building links on Search engine your ecommerce optimising and partner sites. Free advertising model or database sites submitting web and paid listings in where the to directories, pages to the industry-specific advertiser bids for comparison sites search engines to portals/directories. positions (separate & classified sites. increase the Blogs, ePR, social from main listings) Different systems probability of networking sites & pays amount for eg Yahoo, Google higher results for every click. Products, Kelkoo keyphrases found on your site | |
  49. 49. How Search Engines Work A search engine is made of three basic components: A Spider or Robot A Storage System A Matching Process or An automated browser, it or Database Relevancy Algorithm searches the web for new A record of all the pages The rules that tell the search websites and changes to viewed by the Spider engine how to determine websites then views the what would be relevant to web pages and strips out your search the text content | |
  50. 50. The Search Engine Optimisation Process | |
  51. 51. Search Engine Optimisation Process Part 1 – Auditing and planning • Can the spiders access your site? • Keyphrase research • Page planning Part 2 – On-page factors • Writing optimised text Part 3 - Off page factors • Link building Part 4 – Ongoing Management • Submission • Reporting • Ongoing Activity Part 5 – Using pay per click (PPC) while SEO kicks in • Developing a new site • Integration with PPC | |
  52. 52. Remove the barriers & let the spiders in! Barriers - prevent the spiders from accessing your site content • Flash • Dynamic, database-driven URLs with a “?” in their names or long query strings, eg hotel and holiday pages from a product database • Frames • Use of JavaScript in links/navigation • Auto-redirects • Password protected areas Remember to test your website using | |
  53. 53. Create a Keyphrase Matrix for Your Products/Services hotel hotels room rooms weekend break book book hotel book book room book book weekend hotels rooms break reserve reserve reserve reserve reserve reserve hotel hotels room rooms weekend break check hotel check hotels room rooms weekend availability availability check check check break check availability availability availability availability Derbyshire hotel hotels room rooms weekend Derbyshire Derbyshire Derbyshire Derbyshire break Derbyshire London hotel hotels room rooms weekend London London London London break London | |
  54. 54. Keyphrase research Useful online tools include: • Word tracker A keyphrase evaluation tool that gives popularity figures for individual search terms based upon actual search engine activity. • Google’s traffic estimator/keyword tool • PPC tools within each search engine | |
  55. 55. Google keyword tool | |
  56. 56. Google keyword tool | |
  57. 57. Optimisation - Content Considerations • <TITLE> tag • Visible Text The text in the Title tag is one of the most On-topic, optimised content is the most important factors influencing search engine important factor if prominent search ranking algorithms. engine positioning is to be achieved. • META Description Copywriting and Editing Optimised to encourage click-throughs. Headings and Formatting • META Keywords Internal Anchor Links Provided but currently of little importance.. ALT image attributes • Stop words • Themes Many search engines exclude common Development of thematic content areas. words. The optimisation includes avoidance of stop words in key areas of the pages. • Keyword frequency, weight & • Spam avoidance prominence No techniques are used that could be Adjustments to apply elements of the considered to be spamming. “science”. | |
  58. 58. Title & Meta Tags • The Title Tag is also important with regard to Google ranking • Description acts as the “advert” that attracts browsers to click through • Keyword Meta tags – less important Title tag Description | |
  59. 59. Check your keyword density: | |
  60. 60. Check your keyword density: | |
  61. 61. Check your keyword density: | |
  62. 62. What else do you need to consider? 2. Off-Page Factors 1. On-Page Factors – Domain name – Title Tag – Location of hosting/ISP – Meta Tags – Filename / full URL – Page Content – Directory Listings – Heading Content – Internal Link structure – Text formatting – External Link Structure – Frequency of phrases – Anchor text of inbound links – Density of phrases – Page quality of inbound links – Prominence of phrases | |
  63. 63. Introduction to Link building strategies & use of 3rd party sites | |
  64. 64. Examples of different types of inbound links Google Maps & Visit The Peak Business Directory District Dan’s B & B Dan’s B & B in Buxton Visit Dan’s B & B for great weekend break! Derbyshire business directory Buxton Dan’s B & B My Site Dan’s B & B book now for great discounts. (Dan’s B & B) Dan’s B & B 39 Justinian Road, Buxton B & B Blog Last minute rooms at Dan’s B & B. Dan’s B & B wins Derbyshire cleanest B & B award | |
  65. 65. Why inbound links are important to my site? Improved link popularity helps to boost your site in the Search Engines: • Research & find appropriate sites (use of Arelis,, • Contact appropriate sites • Acquisition of links • Checking/chasing, follow up • Reporting • Avoidance of link farms and ‘bad neighbourhoods’ | |
  66. 66. Importance of 3rd party directories & portals Evaluate and compare directories for the following factors: Direct traffic • Are your competitors listed? • Do they get top 10 search engine positions for the keyphrases you want to be found for? • How much traffic do they get (unique visitors per month)? • Is their Alexa ranking greater than your own site (and other directories you are considering)? Inbound links – to help your search engine ranking • What is the Google Page Rank of the page that your entry will appear on? • Does Google indexes the links from this directory? (Check competitors sites by typing in into search box of Google) Costs • Free or paid entry | |
  67. 67. Linking Tip – Anchor Text Avoid - Click here for information about Anicca Solutions.  What kind of services?  Web development and internet marketing services provided by Anicca Solutions – useful information! Many search engines consider the text in and around hyperlinks to be more important. They are also looking for descriptive relevancy. | |
  68. 68. is found for “click here” (due to the power of anchor text) | |
  69. 69. Importance of Page rank – receiving some of the “credibility” from the sites that link to you | |
  70. 70. Submitting Your Site? • Manual submissions • Individual page submissions • Language specific as required .com .fr .de .it .kr. Inclusion in Directories: • Yahoo! (paid) • DMOZ (Open Directory) • and others • Before you pay for a directory entry check that Google “values” the links | |
  71. 71. International Search engine marketing • Each country has own national search engines • International search engines such as, and have local versions of their search engines with their own algorithm • Some international search engines will alter the algorithm used depending on the IP address of the user (eg you will get a different result on in the US then if you were in the UK or another country) • National search engine rank local sites more highly (country- specific url and IP address) • National search engines rank sites in local language more highly • Each country will have country-specific keyphrases and spellings eg repetitive stress injury = repetitive strain injury, optimisation = optimization, • Keyphrases used in one country will not necessarily translate | |
  72. 72. Top-tips to improve your search engine traffic • Check that your site has been indexed all the top UK and .com search engine (type into each search engine) • Check that your site has no search engine barriers (eg flash, frames) • Check that there is a “site map” and text links to pages within your site • Every page within your site must act as a doorway into the site by containing the keyphrases used by searchers – there should be unique content, titles and descriptions on each page • Check that every page has the “calls for action” – eg phone numbers, register for email, check availability, book now! • Check your Google page rank and develop Strategic link building and registration in directories - DIY! • Use a dual strategy of search engine optimisation and pay per click (+/- xml feed) to cover all the keyphrases used by potential customers • Monitor your site, use a statistics package to determine levels of traffic, where they came from, keyphrases used and what they did when they got there (did they register or book?) - What is the CPA & ROI? | |
  73. 73. Bringing it all together! | |
  74. 74. Pulling it all together! Getting traffic to your website Quality & performance of your website | |
  75. 75. Want more information? Free Online Marketing Courses via Ann Stanley 07930 384443 | |