Creating a well designed website is no easy task. The first and most basic of all steps that must be taken to reach this goal is a plan of navigation. A plan of navigation will take into account what has worked for you in the past, and what you expect to work for you in the future. It will display your strengths, while strengthening your weaknesses. This can only be achieved by focusing on the most important of all phases of creating a website: RESEARCH!
Why is research so important?
Research is the tool by which you will examine the past to predict the future.
There are many reasons why a page may not be working for your company and not converting customers. If a page is not being visited, perhaps it is due to content that is not relevant to your market. It may also be that your choice of keywords may not be well defined, or even too obscure to draw attention. In this research phase you will examine the keywords you currently have against the keyword trends that others are searching. I suggest using Google’s keyword tool to find out what are the words that are popular and compare them to what you have in your site content. Ideally, you want to optimize your site to a traffic amount that your site can handle. If your trying to get into a niche market, perhaps the obscure keywords that only have a few hundred visitors may be good for you, but we suggest focusing on the “middle fruit” keywords with a few thousand to increase your odds. Once you find the keywords that you think may work well for your page, check them against your competitors. I find that keywordspy.com helps in this task. Here you can see what keywords your competitors are optimized for and what keywords they are competing for. If the competition is too high for you to compete effectively, begin your research again.
Once a keyword list has been compiled, you can begin creating your navigation. Navigation is important because it will be the major factor aside from your content keeping your visitors engaged. By creating an easy navigation structure, you will make each visit count by making it easy to go from page to page, allowing your visitors to get the information they came to seek in a much faster way. By increasing the speed to find information, the less likely your visitor is to abandon your site, in which you loose all odds of making that sale. In order to create this structure, you want to group your keywords by relevance. This means that the keywords “seo website development” and “seo site development” may be grouped together because 1. they both relate to the same subject and 2. because they are similar in language. By grouping the keywords by subject (context) you are making sure that the visitors to the page with these words are finding exactly what they are looking for. Don’t put irrelevant keywords that will only confuse people, so don’t try to optimize for “organic SEO” and “search engine marketing” on the same page. This is a common mistake that many people make specially on their home page. By grouping words by language similarity, you will be enforcing that your page is focused and you will increase your odds of being found as opposed to only optimizing for one word (we suggest no more than 3 keywords per page). Once you have a good solid list of grouped keywords, you will be on your way to creating a landing page structure and will allow your navigation to develop itself based on what people are searching for. Since each page will be unique, you will avoid duplicate content which can damage your page rank.
Once you are happy with your keyword list and the grouping you have developed, it is time to begin organizing your list into your navigation menu. You can organize the grouping to find out what will go into your about page, your service page, etc. You may also find that your research requires you to create new pages you didn’t have before. If it begins getting complicated, I suggest creating html flyout menus that will fly out when your mouse hovers above the button. For example: “website design company”, “seo firm”, and “sem company” may all fit into your services section and can easily fly out from when hovering out of your services button. By keeping the flyout menus in html, you will also help your site by creating keyword rich links that increase your odds of being found.
When creating a website, consider doing your research before anything, and use this information when creating your navigation menu. Having an optimized navigation will help your customers have a good experience because it will allow them to find what they were searching for in a fast and efficient way. It will also help your site rank well as you will have essentially created a landing page structure that will serve as an optimized site map. Follow these steps and you will begin to see a difference in your website’s usablility. Your visitors will appreciate it and you can begin to follow your progress. If you still need help in creating an optimized experience for your website, call a San Diego SEO company, Saba SEO at 1-866-937-1717.