Notes from the field 1996 – 2010 David Quaid - Consultant SEO - Search Engine Optimisation Some truths about Website design
Background <ul><li>Experience from selling a range of products – healthcare, hotel nights, travel, water filters, gifts, s...
About this presentation <ul><li>This is a tongue-in-cheek generalisation of a view formed on working on some projects </li...
Notes... <ul><li>“ Customer is always right” theory means access to a huge range of infallible ideas on website design and...
“ You have to put this there...” <ul><li>People try to improve/influence the web based on their own peeves and pet hates  ...
Low No Barrier to entry <ul><li>Perceived low cost of website design  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>High availability of low cost ...
Huge emphasis on branding <ul><li>Branding is clearly important </li></ul><ul><li>Companies like Microsoft, Mercedes, Coca...
Brands: Back to basics <ul><li>Unique brands serve to act as reminders </li></ul><ul><li>The brand is added to the target ...
Web Marketing is different <ul><li>The argument “your business is your brand” may be true </li></ul><ul><li>But Marketing ...
Learning from the best <ul><li>People often copy elements from successful websites </li></ul><ul><li>This is enormously da...
Its going to be great <ul><li>Automatic assumption that because other websites are doing it that there is sufficient deman...
My website is my marketing tool <ul><li>My website will bring people in. They will favourite it – probably even set it as ...
The worst... <ul><li>Estimated Website design bill = company startup budget </li></ul><ul><li>Estimates based on €399 webs...
Fixing it <ul><li>Research with other web-based businesses – even similar/potential competitors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How?...
Thank you <ul><li>All feedback, criticisms and pub/forum based discussions and arguments welcome </li></ul><ul><li>Resourc...
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Some truths about website design

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Some truths about website design

  1. 1. Notes from the field 1996 – 2010 David Quaid - Consultant SEO - Search Engine Optimisation Some truths about Website design
  2. 2. Background <ul><li>Experience from selling a range of products – healthcare, hotel nights, travel, water filters, gifts, software, consulting, websites,... </li></ul><ul><li>12 years working in website, web store and web app design, development and marketing </li></ul><ul><li>400+ projects completed from small to 32 country projects </li></ul>
  3. 3. About this presentation <ul><li>This is a tongue-in-cheek generalisation of a view formed on working on some projects </li></ul><ul><li>I’ve put this together to help website designers and customers alike to put more research and planning into their ideas </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid mistakes. Avoidable Mistakes = waste. Repeated Mistakes = stupidity. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Notes... <ul><li>“ Customer is always right” theory means access to a huge range of infallible ideas on website design and marketing </li></ul><ul><li>Very few publicly available facts/scientific about website design and marketing and consumer shopping habits </li></ul><ul><li>Tons of home truths and entrenched ideas, snake oil and just plain nonsense </li></ul><ul><li>Concepts about domain names, content, colours, branding vary hugely </li></ul>
  5. 5. “ You have to put this there...” <ul><li>People try to improve/influence the web based on their own peeves and pet hates </li></ul><ul><li>People want to make everybody happy and suit every possible visitor </li></ul><ul><li>Even though they’ve never connected with any of these people, the assumptions made are enormous </li></ul><ul><li>It’s hard to believe that choosing/moving element A over B in an already set design can only serve to please someone versus alienating people either way </li></ul>
  6. 6. Low No Barrier to entry <ul><li>Perceived low cost of website design </li></ul><ul><ul><li>High availability of low cost design </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Assume that a website = a web business </li></ul><ul><li>No training required </li></ul><ul><li>Technical training courses only means no training available </li></ul><ul><li>Huge assumptions about market demand, needs, supply, costs, marketing = EPIC FAIL in too many cases.... </li></ul>
  7. 7. Huge emphasis on branding <ul><li>Branding is clearly important </li></ul><ul><li>Companies like Microsoft, Mercedes, Coca-Cola are brand experts </li></ul><ul><li>Most SOHO web businesses are not selling a brand – they are competing on price, service, availability, uniquiness, niche – essentially fighting other brands </li></ul><ul><li>Sales of these are seldom enriched or served by a brand </li></ul>
  8. 8. Brands: Back to basics <ul><li>Unique brands serve to act as reminders </li></ul><ul><li>The brand is added to the target customers perceptions when they think of a product/service </li></ul><ul><li>Brands are pre-loaded – you often know about them before you need them </li></ul><ul><li>Look at cars, cigarettes, clothes, luxury brands – people who don’t buy them are aware of them </li></ul>
  9. 9. Web Marketing is different <ul><li>The argument “your business is your brand” may be true </li></ul><ul><li>But Marketing 101: build your brand is only 50% of the battle on the web – just the battle got bigger </li></ul><ul><li>Most people are actually looking for your service not your brand </li></ul><ul><li>You can’t build a brand in reverse – you can’t market a brand in a technology that doesn’t broadcast </li></ul>
  10. 10. Learning from the best <ul><li>People often copy elements from successful websites </li></ul><ul><li>This is enormously dangerous </li></ul><ul><li>Often elements picked make no difference </li></ul><ul><li>Identifying why a successful website does X or Y assumes that you are educated enough from the outside looking in what those elements are </li></ul>
  11. 11. Its going to be great <ul><li>Automatic assumption that because other websites are doing it that there is sufficient demand for another </li></ul><ul><li>“ Build it they will come” – say no more </li></ul><ul><li>People assume that when visitors see their lovely design and layout and clever writing that the site will go viral </li></ul><ul><li>Built in expectation/automatic right to get free traffic from Google </li></ul>
  12. 12. My website is my marketing tool <ul><li>My website will bring people in. They will favourite it – probably even set it as their home page and share it with their friends </li></ul><ul><li>All I need to do is put it on facebook so more people can find it </li></ul><ul><li>Why would I want to spend outrageous figures on AdWords ? </li></ul>
  13. 13. The worst... <ul><li>Estimated Website design bill = company startup budget </li></ul><ul><li>Estimates based on €399 website ads on Google </li></ul><ul><li>No User eXperience testing </li></ul><ul><li>No allowance for redevelopment </li></ul><ul><li>No allowance for market testing </li></ul><ul><li>No allowance for market research </li></ul>
  14. 14. Fixing it <ul><li>Research with other web-based businesses – even similar/potential competitors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How? Google, twitter, LinkedIn </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Read about the people BEHIND Amazon, eBay, Yahoo, Google </li></ul><ul><li>Try before you buy: Build a blog and try to get more than 50 people a day. </li></ul><ul><li>Read my next power-point  </li></ul>
  15. 15. Thank you <ul><li>All feedback, criticisms and pub/forum based discussions and arguments welcome </li></ul><ul><li>Resources: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Irish Webmasters Forum </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>TalkShop.ie </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>My SEO Site </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>My SEO Blog </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Connect on LinkedIn </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tweet me </li></ul></ul>

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