Join Matt and Chris for another thrilling episode of the Best SEO Podcast.
Chris: Hi and welcome to the SEO Podcast: Unknown Secrets of Internet Marketing. My name is Chris Burres owner of eWebResults.
Matt: My name is Matt Bertram, your Digital Marketing Strategist.
Chris: Strategist! Welcome back to another fun-filled edition of our podcast. This is Podcast #441. And as always we have a– well let’s see. Well that review is an old– oh there we go! It’s in the wrong spot.
Chris: Okay. So we’ll figure this out.
Matt: We’re live!
Chris: As always, we have a tip from our previous podcast, and that tip is…
Matt: There are special words for title tags that are associated with better rank. Learn them and use them.
Chris: Yes! Last time we covered words that you should use in your title tags that are associated with those sites that have better rank.
Chris: You should learn them!
Matt: And you should use them.
Chris: And you should use them.
Matt: And you should put them at the front of your title tag.
Matt: And typically in the first three to five words.
Chris: Just an example, I don’t know, like: Free, Best. Those are a couple of examples.
Matt: Best SEO Podcast. You need to say that at the beginning of the podcast.
Chris: Of the podcast, yeah. Subscribe, follow–
Chris & Matt: Boom!
Chris: Alright, as always we have a review. Also, as always we have a review. This one is from Brian Goldsmith. Punch in the face to you!
Chris: He’s actually a long-time client. He says, “They are the best at what they do, eWeb has helped us from creating our website and building our SEO to all our social media.” Bryan, punch in the face to you!
Chris: We really appreciate you as a customer and friend. Hey, if you’ve been to this podcast– oh wait! Please remember we are filming live here in Houston, Texas, and Matt and I, we are your…
Chris & Matt: Results Rebels!
Chris: And if you’ve returned, it’s probably for tips and tricks that you can get. If you’d like more tips and tricks, you can get those. For example, “5 Online Marketing Mistakes That Can Tank Your Business & How to Avoid Them.” You can go to eWebResults.com/
Chris: That’s nice and easy. If this is the first time you’ve listened to the podcast: howdy and welcome to the podcast. Again, if you’ve been here before, you know what we’re about to skip. We run a contest each and every podcast, and the way the contest works is if we get 10 shikos…
Matt: A share, a like, or a follow.
Chris: If we get 10 of those– by the way, when you’re doing them, you hear a sound in the back of your head and it’s like…
Chris & Matt: Shikow!
Chris: If we get 10 shikos and we get a review, then we move the information where we tell you how to connect with us and leave reviews to the end of the podcast. Boom! It’s at the end of the podcast. Teaser article. This is going to be good. This article is, “SEO for Web Designers.”
Chris: “What You Should Know.” Web design is obviously incredibly important to have in your presence on the internets, and SEO is an important part of being able to be found. And so those people who are doing the web design for you should have at least some fundamental understanding of SEO, and we’re going to jump into that.
Matt: Well, and I think it’s important to know when you’re talking to people in the industry, Chris.
Matt: And you can kind of speak to this a little bit is: when you’re building a new website for somebody or when you’re looking for a new website – if you’re out there searching for web design companies – taking your existing content and putting it in a new format is usually the standard option for web design.
Matt: Adding content is kind of additional or extra or a bonus if you’re paying more money for a website. And then, SEO is typically not done on the backend of website, from filling out everything that’s technical.
Matt: And that’s another kind of component. So it’s important when you’re looking or educating you on looking for a web design company ask those questions. Ask the right questions.
Matt: What are they doing? Are they just transfering the content into a better format and it looks nice? Are they adding additional content for you, or generating that content? And then, are they doing the SEO on it? So those are kind of three different components. And I think it’s really important to know when you’re looking for websites, to understand that.
Chris: And one of the things that we like to– absolutely true, and one of the things we like to ask is: when it comes to kind of choosing who’s going to design your website, and maybe who’s going to do your SEO, we ask this question: if you hire somebody to make a great website and they do– and in reality what that means is your friends, family, good customers, they like your website, right?
Matt: Or designers. Fancy, fancy designers. Real pretty websites.
Chris: So they create a website that you like, right? And that’s good, and you hire another company to send lots of traffic to that website. Be it SEO or PPC or maybe some social media traffic. And they actually send lots of traffic to your website. So you’ve got a great website, you got lots of traffic to your website, but you’re not getting any business, we ask this question: who do you fire?
Matt: Well, I think it’s really important to understand the conversion optimization when you’re looking at a website.
Matt: So web designers need to understand principles, and that’s why I think this–
Chris: Well, we’re going to cover it, yeah yeah.
Matt: Yeah, we’re going to cover for SEO like as building out the right structure but also looking at high converting websites, that it’s not just a pretty business card or flyer online, it actually helps you transact business. And so those fundamental concepts need to be incorporated into it. You can still make the website look really pretty, but there’s things you need to incorporate to make Google happy and to make the visitors happy, and then to make you happy ultimately to generate more leads online. And I think that that component of the conversion optimization, the usability of the website’s a component that people forget about, right?
Matt: And SEO has a broad terminology, but they have to scoop into that but then also the web designer has to kind of– it’s just like sales and marketing.
Matt: Where do those points meet and cross over?
Chris: Right, yeah.
Matt: I think that that’s–
Chris: And if at any point are they mutually exclusive– and so what we say is a good web designer should listen to this podcast; this specific podcast. They should understand the fundamentals that we’re talking about, and at a very core level, they’re at a disadvantage from a company like ours, right? Because we’re not just creating the website or the landing pages, or optimizing the graphical user interface, we’re also driving the traffic. And then more importantly having conversations with our customers on a month over month or week over week basis. What that does, is we’ve got a feedback loop. So you could listen to this podcast or read an article about great web design, and it could say, “Hey Green is the right color to use for buttons.” Well okay, we’re reading that same article, we’re testing and measuring it.
Chris: And because we have the feedback loop, not only with the traffic, but also with the customer, we actually know what works for delivering business.
Matt: So, well just one real life example that I ran across yesterday–
Chris: By the way, this is the longest segue into what we’re about to talk about in history, but yes, go!
Matt: And we have a deadline that we need to get to a meeting, so this is great. So essentially we have a client.
Matt: Okay? Just launched a new website. We designed it fully optimized, full package website. He went from no traffic to his website before to in SEMrush over 600– I think it’s 600.7 or $6.700 per month.
Chris: Of value.
Matt: Of Google ads spent, right?
Chris: Right, equivalent.
Matt: Equivalent. Like because we know what we’re doing. We built the website, optimized for SEO and you could just see it. It’s just like this huge, boom!
Matt: This huge pop, and that’s really the advantage of getting an SEO company that does web design to design your website.
Matt: Or understands the concepts.
Chris: That is exactly right. Hey, we have t-shirts available, you can get those at eWebResults.com/Swag!
Matt: Okay, let’s jump into this because we’re running out of time.
Chris: Yeah, we’re going to jump into this. We’re going to run out of time, we’ve got about less than 15 minutes. So SEO for web designers, what you should know. “A great website is a powerful combination of quality content, appropriate web design, ample SEO efforts, and marketing.” I would say that really those are kind of separate. They should be, I would say, internet marketing is a great website– appropriate web design, ample SEO efforts and marketing. Like that’s great internet marketing, a web design is just a website.
Matt: The venn diagram analogy works here too.
Chris: “Web design and SEO go hand in hand.” Yeah, they do at our company, “And both play a part in developing an SEO optimized website.” You can go hire people who just design websites and that’s really what I think– Well, that’s what we’re going to turn this article into.
So here are things that really a web designer should understand from an SEO perspective, and that’s the structure. Now there’s two kinds of structure. There’s the structure as it relates to the visitor: to make sure it’s easier for the visitor to find things. And then there’s the structure as it relates to search engines.
Chris: And really they’re pretty similar.
Chris: You know, you just want to be able to get to the pages that are of importance really quickly and easily. In the case of SEO a sitemap helps take care of some of that. And he says, “As a general rule pages should be no deeper than four clicks from the home page.”
Matt: Yeah, and I would just say when you’re looking at the SEO standpoint, think hyperlocal SEO.
Matt: Think about like a water and a coke.
Matt: Right? Coke, water, or oil, vinegar, or whatever.
Matt: You mix them, right? It dilutes whatever the purity is of what it is. So if you’re trying to rank for a certain keyword, have a page all about that keyword.
Chris: That one keyword, yeah.
Matt: Right? So the more hyperlocal – that’s kind of the term – that you can do, or the hyperfocus that you can do, the more benefit you’re going to get from the SEO standpoint.
Chris: We just can’t talk about web design without incorporating how the content is going to affect your SEO and impact your internet marketing end results.
The next thing is, “Compulsion of Responsive mobile-Friendly Web Design.” Mobile traffic as a share of global traffic is going to increase in 2017, it was 52%. That means that every web designer needs to get to the fact that mobile-friendly websites is here. Not to mention the fact that there’s mobile-first indexing now.
Chris: Which I’m surprised they didn’t mention. I don’t when– this article was written in October. So yeah, there’s actually one commenter on this article who was just a smidge critical, and I would say that one of the critical pieces that they left out is like: how come you didn’t mention mobile-first indexing? And that’s how important mobile design is.
Matt: Yeah, you really got to look at it on different devices. There’s tools out there that help you to look at what it is.
Matt: When it comes to mobile, I think it’s really great. Above the fold you have a call to action lead capture, some trust building, and maybe a statement that captures everything in the first 5 seconds that people know where they’re at and why they’re there.
Matt: And to be able to easily get in contact with it.
Chris: I love your analogy of, “Hey, you’ve got to pretend somebody’s just dropped in the desert and they have no idea which direction to go: North, South, East, West, whatever. And you got to have the right signs to get to the road map so that they go and stay on your website.
Matt: We definitely don’t what them hitting that back button.
Matt: Right? Even the navigation ones, you want them to hit the logo or the home button.
Matt: Because if they hit back, Google dings you every time they hit back.
Chris: Yup. And they’re gone. “Image optimization is crucial.” So from a web design perspective, you’ve got the aesthetics associated with an image. What images are going to be engaging? What images are appropriate for your target market. So it’s always important to understand your target market and what images are going to appeal to them.
Matt: Clipart is not so good.
Chris: “Optimizing and choosing images is a must because large images can slow down.” So yeah, you need to optimize them because that’ll help your website.
Matt: Well site speed too, right?
Chris: Go faster.
Matt: Well you can also have the recall rate on those images.
Matt: Recall stuff at the top first or download it where it’s kind of fuzzy, right? Before it makes it fully clear to have it download faster.
Chris: And that’s one of the– and we’ll get into that – that’s one of the critiques. it’s like, “Hey, there’s a big difference in terms of optimization speed of how quickly can you start interacting with a website versus the total load time.”
Matt: Well yeah, I mean you want to shrink images too. So there’s definitely.
Chris: All of these are valuable for sure.
Chris: “Speed optimization of the web site. Web developers and designers are kind of always on call. Sometimes you got to make some fast changes.” And he says, “Sometimes those websites–” and he may be kind of interspective on this one, or she. This is Pawan.
Matt: I think cache, really important, right? Even like the two, three–
Chris: By the way one time my brother– I said cache and my brother was like, “Excuse me, it’s cache.” That was my brother.
Matt: I know.
Chris: But he’s at Red Hat and he doesn’t even do web stuff, so yeah.
Matt: I can’t get that word right.
Chris: Cache! Just think cash money.
Matt: Cache! Cache!
Matt: No save you, cache!
Chris: Touché! Often avoid those web designers in the middle because they’re making changes that opt away from the optimization process. “A website that takes two to three seconds to load can face–” and this absolutely true, “Can face higher abandonment rates as compared to others.”
Matt: I think over 3 seconds is kind of the terminology I’m looking at, right?
Chris: Painful, yeah.
Matt: 20% each second after that.
Chris: Next, “Using the right tools.” So he uses GTmetrix, that’s actually really about load speed. So if you think these last three: image, site speed, and now tools includes GTmetrix. That’s about Site Speed. He also gave responsive web design testing, and Screaming Frog SEO which is a minor tool.
Matt: Love it.
Chris: It’s a really great tool. So that was it. That’s really quick. And now I want to talk about what Lyndon, so Lyndon– you know when you read comments sometimes, sometimes they’re just so bad, you’re like, “Who is this idiot?” Right? Who is this moron and I want to investigate them.
Matt: This is Darth Vader.
Matt: This is Darth Vader.
Chris: Then other times, you’re like, “These comments are actually so smart, I want to figure out who this person is.”
Matt: This guy knows what he’s talking about, yeah.
Chris: Oh yeah, this guy knows what he’s talking about.
Matt: I’m not saying the article is bad. Like I really don’t want to knock it and say the article’s bad. I actually think all the stuff is pretty–
Chris: It is very salient, very good.
Chris: And then Lyndon really just goes in and says, “Look, you really missed a whole lot of stuff.” And it starts off– I want to give this preface this with how brutally he says, “No offense, but I’m left with two distinct impressions. #1 you don’t build websites and #2 you don’t do much in regards to load speed.” I think that’s a little harsh.
Matt: Yeah, I don’t think he’s meant to be a troll here.
Matt: I think he just is passionate about it, and again–
Chris: And has a lot to offer.
Matt: Yeah, I mean I think the article’s okay. I mean maybe not right up there on Search Engine Journal, but you want to go into a little bit more detail?
Chris: That was another comment. That said, “Hey this could be on a local blog, maybe not Search Engine Journal.”
Matt: Yeah, yeah.
Chris: He says, “So first: site structure.” He was interested in the four clicks. He says he only heard it references three clicks that all major pages should be accessible within three clicks. I think the shorter the better, actually.
Chris: He says something along the lines of images aren’t render blocking. So it’s not that images stop you from being able to see stuff, large images can result in longer page load times,” That’s true, “but they should have little impact on perceived load or usable load in terms of when they can start interacting with the website.”
Chris: And this is– you kind of alluded to this. This is how you manage how the page loads.
Matt: The recalls, yeah. Uh-huh.
Chris: Responsive and mobile-friendly – I love this – he says, “Surely it should be mobile first. Failing that go with mobile-friendly. Failing that, go with responsive. Failing that, get a new designer.” That’s just the simple truth is as you’re optimizing – especially if you’re using responsive – as you’re optimizing for mobile, it’s also for desktops because most browsers just pull down all information.
Chris: He talks about speed optimization. The two to three second thing again, is kind of overrated. Really, they’re referencing two to three seconds to get something loaded that the user can recognize and start interacting with. That’s absolutely true.
Chris: I still would optimize for overall page speed.
Chris: But if you’re able to have the user interact. I mean the big thing to–
Matt: This guy’s got a lot of comments.
Chris: The big thing to avoid is that bounce rate that you mentioned earlier because that’s going to ding you in terms of the search results that Google sees those bounces. Next was “SRC Set,” right? This bit lets you– so this is just one of the commands that you can use in HTML. “It lets you define multiple images of different dimensions and DPI so the browser can load the best one based on the resolution DPI of your current computer installation.” So you might have images available at a much higher DPI, and therefore a much higher download wait if you will. And so you can have multiple versions and if your computer recognizes – I don’t know – that you’re on an older iPad, then go ahead and pull down a lesser image, take less bandwidth.
Matt: It was like the phone that would go on the 2G versus the 5G.
Chris: Yeah, yeah. “File Types.” So different types of images have file formats that may serve better. So a photo as a JPEG, a simple block of colors as a PNG, and then there’s also a WebP for Chrome.
Matt: And then label all those properly: target keywords.
Chris: Yeah, yeah.
Matt: I’m just going to insert a little SEO in there. Yup.
CSS sprites, that’s actually where you can take one image, and you actually composed that images with multiple images and then you reference the sections on that agglomerated image. And so what it does is it reduces the number of requests.
Chris: And then he also talks about images as fonts. Icon fonts and then SVGs, Scalable Vector Graphics, which are really simple graphics that when you make them bigger and smaller they’re scalable. And then he jumps into compression. I didn’t want to get into all of this, but he talks about G-zip and how you could compress all your texts. You can compress your images as well as possible.
And then in hindsight as I was going through this. Yeah, they didn’t mention titles and descriptions. If you’re doing web design, like at least throw in a title and description, right? Even if you aren’t highly qualified to identify the right keywords. And then put in the title and description that’s going to be best from an SEO perspective. At least get them in there. And we’ll kind of flow through this really quick. Schema markup.
Matt: Yes. Gotta do it.
Chris: You don’t have to do it but it’s good for your click through rate in SERPs.
Matt: You should do it.
Chris: Socialization. Like as you’re designing, you should make it easier for people to interact with you socially.
Matt: Social shares, yeah.
Chris: How about Search Engine friendly URLs? Uh duh! “Accesible/Crawlable–“
Matt: Does he say that?
Chris: Yeah! He says, “Possibly one of the most talked about on-site factors for SEO, you didn’t even touch it.” Search Engine from the URL–“
Matt: Oh I thought he said, “Duh.”
Chris: Oh no.
Matt: That was you.
Chris: That was me.
Chris: That was me. I kind of jumped on the–
Matt: I was like, “Dang! Pile on! Pile on!”
Chris: I jumped on the Lyndon bandwagon there. Right. Most important factors you got to be crawlable, and you probably have to have your robots.txt files. He talks about HTTP1, HTTP2, and HTTPS of course.
Matt: That’s important.
Chris: You get a little bump from search.
Chris: And then 404 resources, which is probably important to a lesser degree.
Chris: I’m going to give a punch in the face to Pawan and to Lyndon.
Chris: By the way because that additional information is worth it.
Matt: I thought it was good, yeah.
Chris: Lyndon, if you connect with us, like reach out to us, we’ll send you a t-shirt. We’ll send you a free t-shirt. We got a whole collection of t-shirts, you can find them at eWebResults.com/swag. In fact we should send him an email if we can figure out how to get ahold of him, and let him know he can have t-shirt.
Matt: He needs the Darth Vader one, right?
Chris: Oh yeah, yeah!
Matt: May the rank be with you.
Chris: May the rank be with you.
Chris: Alright, so if you liked this podcast, we’re going to ask you to do one simple thing and that is to share that with three people. You can do that later.
Matt: We got to go!
Chris: If you want to grow your business with the largest, simplest marketing tool on the planet…
Matt: The internet!
Chris: Call eWebResults for increased revenue in your business 713-592-6724. If you have a referral, send them to us. When they pay us, we pay you.