Designing your website is a great venture, but it has to be planned thoroughly and carefully from the word go. Think of your site as a roadmap with many interesting attractions along the way; each attraction needs to be highlighted and made to stand out. Also, the roads leading to the attractions must be clearly signposted and follow the most optimized path possible. If you start with one or two attractions and a couple of roads, and then keep adding to these randomly, you might find that some attractions don’t stand out anymore and the roads leading to them become complex.
The same applies to your website; structure is not only for architects.
Before you build anything you need to create a sitemap. What pages will you have on your site, how will the content be structured, and how will your internal links work? Next, you need to plan the content page by page. Once you have the content ideas, you need the right keywords to reinforce the content. You will need images, videos and logos, and content written around the keywords in a SEO-friendly way.
The reason we need to plan our websites so well is for them to stand a chance of being found on search engines. SEO (search engine optimization) is in a constant state of flux, and we need to keep on top of it whilst creating a website. This involves a degree of adaptability but the overall trend is the importance of content.
Content has always been based around keywords to make it of value, but it has now evolved into something more than that. Not only do we need relevant content, Google now also considers how well the content answers a given question. In other words, is this piece of content exactly what this person was looking for? Enter Latent Semantic Indexing Keywords (LSI). These LSI keywords are words which are connected to your keyword but not direct derivatives. For example, going to a LSI keyword generator site such as http://lsigraph.com/ we looked up the keyword “server”. The generator compiles a list of the appropriate LSI keywords:
- computer servers
- internet servers
- how to make a server
- sql server 2014 licensing guide
- windows server
- free internet servers
- servers for minecraft
- email server
- computer servers for small business
- what is the purpose of a server
- home computer servers
- computer server prices
- computer network servers
- what does a server do
- computer servers for sale
- computer server definition
This is only a fraction of the list. A piece of content including the keywords ‘internet servers’, ‘email server’ and ‘how to make a server’ are seen to be relevant to searches for the term ‘server’.
Similarly, the LSI list for the keyword “books” includes:
- amazon dvd’s
- chegg books
- bookbub free books
- christian books
- amazon used books
- amazon calendars 2015
Here you see that ‘dvd’s’ and ‘calendars’ are associated with the term ‘books’, which means that a piece of content written around dvd’s might come up as a search result for a search for books.
Once you’ve identified your keywords and LSI keywords, it’s time to create some content. Your product pages and landing pages shouldn’t be flooded with text, as this can be offputting to your site visitors. The area you can really hit the keywords mark is on your business blog, which is definitely worth the work. Providing your site visitors with informative articles around your products, services and industry will prove you to be thought leaders in your field, which will build trust in your potential customers. It’ll also keep Google happy without stuffing content into your web pages. Don’t duplicate the content; the search engines do not look on this favorably, and it makes you look like you’re just filling empty space. If you feel the need to duplicate content, perhaps you don’t need the page you are duplicating.
Whilst being flexible in the actual website structure is more challenging, we do have this freedom in the content we create. We can always edit content, add new versions or adapt it, so as Google’s algorithms evolve, keep up to date with titles and keywords. But overall, always think of one thing: does my website and its content provide value?