I have noticed that in Nigeria many business and business owners believe that web design and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a one-time thing. Meaning that, one just designs the web site, add the relevant keywords, and then just forget about it. Job done. Ehh! Wrong, for the uninitiated, SEO strategy is an ongoing project that must constantly be redesigned, tweaked and fixed to meet changing circumstances of your business or new trends and development on the internet.
SEO website design is not like painting a house, which can be done once every 10 years. Instead, it is like vacuuming or laundry; it must be done on a regular basis to prevent problems.
For this reason, many SEO experts that specialize in website design, charge a monthly retainer fee. This fee can include all the services that must be performed on a regular basis, such as checking competitor’s sites, changing keywords, and refreshing web pages, updating coding standards, browser compliance, and tracking metrics or analyzing performance. In some cases complete redesigns are necessary, like implementing a new responsive design from a former design.
However, randomly performing these tasks will not give the results you want. Website updates and other tasks must be scheduled on a regular basis with attention to best practices in SEO web design. Standards are available that help you know when to perform certain tasks and optimize web site performance, no matter who is doing your SEO.
Developing an Update Procedure for Your Website
Create a list of tasks to be done, and the frequency with which these tasks should be performed, Armed with a well-planned schedule, everyone will be included in the decision-making process about how to achieve top SEO results. Developing a “style guide” can help everyone involved in your SEO process understand your goals and what you have already done toward building strong SEO. Some things that should be included in this list are:
- File naming. The naming conventions used for new website pages, image files, audio and video files and all other types of content should be clearly defined and checked on a regular basis. File names should describe the contents and ideally will include specific keywords.
- Structure of Directory. The directory structure of your website can make it easy or difficult for search engine bots to find you. A well-defined silo structure, which uses top-level themes and builds downwards, is often the best choice for websites.
- Redirects. Best SEO practices indicate that the ideal number for redirects is 301. Redirect codes should always take into account your SEO strategy; failure to consider this in redirection planning could lead to less-than-optimal results. Routinely, webmasters or SEO experts should also remove pages that are no longer working or are no longer needed.
- Creating Links. The exact procedure for identifying links and keywords should be written out so that everyone understands the process. Guidelines for linking should be established before the linking activities begin.
- Adding New Pages. When adding a new page, experts often have several important questions that they need to answer before embarking on the task. That list such include questions like: What keywords are we using for this page? What is the purpose or goal of this page? What silo does this page support? The page should be designed with the answers to these questions in mind.
Style guides can make ongoing website development and SEO a clear and straightforward process for new coders and programmers adapting to your needs for expansion. Make sure that everyone involved in your IT team is clear on company objectives, technology requirements, and equally as important, search engine trends.