Everyone has frustrating things in their life. If you are a roofer, it is getting stung by wasps. If you are a cop, it is the disrespectful, belligerent jerk who cusses you out when you’re trying to give them a ticket for going 55MPH through a school zone.
As an SEO company and content creator one of the most frustrating things I encounter is web designers. I have seen it so many times now I am tempted to just give up.
You get a page perfectly crafted, it begins to rank, you get it some great links, and then, like a 4 year old at the beach, they come through and smash it all to pieces.
What sucks here is if you tell your client “Hey, your page is tanking in the rankings because you changed it” they will either be offended or tell the designer to change it who will then blame the SEO people.
There is usually no quick fix.
Changing the way a page looks is largely irrelevant. Visitors want to get in, make a quick decision and get out. In fact, I have been doing studies here which prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that people will actually avoid even going to your website if they don’t have to.
You can sit around and tweak it and change colors and move images around but if the design elements interfere with the document you will absolutely begin to see problems with rankings, and that affects your bottom line. While it doesn’t impact mine (it actually helps it), I do wish for what is best for my clients.
Don’t get me wrong, a professional looking page is wonderful, and, I am not much of a designer. Almost anyone who can match their shirt & pants possess a skill that I do not. I am not out to get all designers by any means.
How to tell if your page is an easily readable document
I am still using a Lynx text browser like I was in 1992 (to test pages) but most people will want to give this page a very quick visit: www.seo-browser.com. Just go there, enter your URL, and see what your page looks like. It should look like an easily readable document. Note that Flash elements will not show up, and most images and menus and misc info boxes REALLY screw up the page.
This is how Google’s spider sees your page. Is it clean, fast loading, and easy to navigate?
Or is it a jumbled up mess with more images than text?