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Who Should Have a Basic Understanding of Search Engine Optimization

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  • Overview
  • CEO or Owner
  • Marketing
  • Web Designers
  • Big Companies are Worse
This is a good place to stop focusing on the term Search Engine Optimization and to start talking about Internet Marketing. Search Engine Optimization is only one aspect of effectively selling your product or service on the Internet. Your success hinges on the cooperation of people from many disciplines. One of the primary reasons efforts to improve Internet sales fail is because of a lack of cooperation from management deciding what they want to tell the customer rather than concentrating on answering a customer's question or solving a customer's problem. And if you're lucky enough to have a potential customer visit your website you literally have a few seconds to get his interest or the customer clicks ways.

While all pages are important, search engines place the most importance on the home page. The home page is valuable real estate. Every discipline in the company competes for this tiny space. It's even worse because most people will not scroll until they become interested. So you have the space above the fold (or what you can immediately see when you lad on the page) to play with.

No matter how honed the consultants people skills may be there is a high probability that a honest Internet marketing consultant will get everybody upset. That's why success stories are few and far between. To understand the problem let's begin by stepping on everybody's toes...
The CEO or owner must realize that few if any people care about the company's history, it's corporate creed, or the background of the officers. If you have a prospect truly interested in your product or service having this information on another subordinate page is great stuff... but not on the home page. Another tough pill for many owners to swallow is that in most cases the company name is a low priority item for presentation on your home page.

Most companies are run by people who are impatient..."I spent the money... I want results now!" Well now I'll take a moment a talk specifically about Search Engine Optimization because this requires patience. There is only so much you can do with what's called on page optimization. Many of the external factors search engines use to rank your pages are a function of time pure and simple. There are some things you can do to expedite those external factors. But you will require patience.
Marketing will often want to see a design that parallels the same style of effective marketing copy he or she has produced for printed or radio/TV distribution for years. Marketing copy for the web is completely different. Both marketing and the CEO/owner often want to use industry jargon to talk about their product. In most cases this is a mistake. Your write web copy like you pray using the words the person receiving the message uses and wants to hear.
Most web designers have had little or no experience with principals of Internet Marketing. Schools teaching website design spend little or no time on writing effective web copy or Search Engine Optimization. Most web designers pride themselves in creating unique and entertaining designs using tools like Flash and Javascript. Depending on the subject such presentations are necessary. But many times the entertainment factor obscures the rapid communication of the message and slow down the response time for the page particularly in a mobile environment. Search engines and most serious visitors to your website shun excessive pizazz in favor of those which simply present information that helps answer their questions or solves their problems.

Web designers pour their hearts and souls into their websites and protect it as a mother bear protects its cub. No outsider is going to tell them that things have to change and the resistance can be absolutely incredible.
Usually the bigger the company the bigger the people problems...
Usually the bigger the company, the bigger the egos, the harder it is to institute new ideas. It is often impossible to manage people in large organizations to pull together to be successful. But knowing this fact can be a major strategic opportunity for smaller, entrepreneurial companies.
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