Simplicity is a Concept we Love to Complicate
New web designers have a tendency to use too many elements in a page design. New Internet marketers start out doing the basics, and then expand their efforts as they learn more techniques. The designer learns the value of simplicity over time. The marketer does also, but only after feeling the effects of wasted efforts. Take the Google Panda fallout as an example. Hundreds of websites lost their search page rank after Google discounted thousands of links. Those links represented millions of man-hours worked by Internet marketers who thought they had the system beat.
What should have been a simple process of linking to relevant sites became a complex game for the marketers who got burned by Panda. A similar, but not as far-reaching impact has been felt after Google Penguin, the algorithmic change instituted to stop over-optimization. Repeating a keyword or phrase too often in a body of content will now get you demoted 50 to 100 spots in Google page rank.
Simple Landing Pages work Better
Clog up a landing page with too much content or images that flash and beep at your visitors and you’ll see your time-on-site numbers drop down to under ten seconds per visit. That “shock and awe” website design strategy does not work. The consumer public isn’t mesmerized by special effects on a website; they’re annoyed by it. They can see special effects in the movie theatre. It’s autumn. There are plenty of horror movies with CGI and fake blood to be disgusted by. Potential customers don’t need to feel those feelings when they visit your website. If they do, they won’t come back.
A simple banner, a clear and concise message, visible but not overwhelming call-to-action commands and buttons, these are all elements of a good landing page. You’re also not limited to creating only one landing page. Are you running PPC ads or promoting a specific product or service this month? Have us create a separate landing page for you that specifically targets the visitors responding to those campaigns. The direct relationship of ad to landing page will bring your cost per click down and get you better CTR rates. The difference in price is actually pretty significant.
Simple Navigation leads to a Higher Conversion Rate
If your visitors know exactly where to go, your conversion rates will be higher. Wow! That was too simple. Let me get this straight. If the “contact page” is clearly marked with a “contact” tab or button, you’ll get more responses? That may sound like a silly question to some folks out there, but you would be amazed at how many times we need to explain concepts like that. Over-complication, especially for those who grew up in the 80’s and 90’s, seems to be ingrained. Getting too clever with a landing page won’t bring you better results. The opposite is more often the case.
Clean and simple navigation is a variable in the Google algorithm. Our SEO team here in San Diego checks the navigation and Meta tagging before we do anything else. The first needs to be simple; the latter needs to be direct. Keyword spamming in the tags is just as bad as keyword spamming in the content, maybe worse. Have you been wondering why you’re doing everything else right and still not ranking? Try looking at your site coding. If you don’t change the code in the back room, those other changes up front will not get the results you’re looking for.
Stay Away from Marketing Gurus and SEO Specialists
Here’s one of the simplest suggestions we can offer you. Stay away from self-proclaimed marketing “gurus” or SEO “specialists”. Anyone who tries to over-complicate the processes of designing or marketing your website has either been missing the point the past few years or is assuming you have. It really isn’t rocket science. We design websites that tell a simple story and give visitors clear choices. Our marketing people build links with other sites that are relative to the industry our clients’ sites are in. Our writers create content that is not devoid of keywords, but definitely not over-loaded with them either. Posts like this one need to flow naturally for best effect.
Humans and search spiders both want the same thing. When they search for a specific product, service. Or piece of information, they want to find it. Your landing pages should be clear about what you have to offer. Your content and Meta tags should mirror that clarity and your ads should represent, not misrepresent or verbally enhance it. Any marketing efforts should follow the same pattern of thinking. Everything you do to promote your San Diego website, from search engine optimization and PPC to social media marketing, should be simple, concise, and aimed squarely at your target market. To learn more about this, contact Skybox Creative today at 619-381-3825.
Does “simpler” Integrated Marketing affect search engine page rank?
Integrated inbound marketing is being promoted across the web as the simplest way to drive and track traffic to your website. We’d like to hear from our readers on this change in philosophy about how we promote businesses on the web. On the surface, the construction and maintenance of the sales funnel appears to be fairly straightforward and it is, but how does the creation of non-linked landing pages connected to ads and not other sites affect page rank? Will your website still rank if you’re just getting traffic but don’t have a lot of backlinks? We’re going to talk more about this in next week’s post, but we’d like to hear your thoughts on it today. Use the comment section below to weigh in on the topic.