By Kevin McKnelly
Looking for a good web designer in the Santa Clarita area? Look no further. This page will provide you everything you need to know about Santa Clarita Web Designers. First of all, there are a number of good designers here in the Santa Clarita Valley. Some are what I call, "Designer Only" web designers. These are the ones that can come up with really great creative ideas for a website, but have little understanding of search engine optimization (SEO). Others I call, "SEO Web Designers". These are those that have an understanding of how web design can impact its ability to get good rankings on the internet.
If you are a business owner, and need either a new website, or changes made to your existing website, here is something you should consider:
Do you just want a good-looking site, or one that is set up to be search engine friendly? I have used the following analogy before, but it is relevant here. If you had to choose between building a beautiful superior-looking store set in a dark, back alley, or an average-looking store on Main Street, which would you choose? Your beautiful store might eventually be found by some people, but the other store would be found right away, and receive the most traffic. Which store will be most successful? The store with the most traffic.
This is one of the biggest mistakes I see when people choose a web designer. They are thinking only about what the site is going to look like, rather than whether or not the design will help them or hurt them with the search engines. If your site does not rank well with the search engines, you will not get the traffic you need. No one will know about your beautiful site except those you tell.
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Some are surprised to learn that a website's design can have an effect on whether or not it can be found on search engines like Google, Yahoo!, and Bing.
I see it all the time. Designers who get so wrapped up in designing a cool-looking site, they either don't know, or disregard how the search engine spiders are going to crawl, and index that site. They get too caught up in the Flash design, and cool stuff they can do on Illustrator or Photoshop, or they let content appear on the page and in meta tags that will actually hurt your rankings with the search engines.
This is why when deciding on a web designer in Santa Clarita, you should pick one that understands how to design a site that is search engine friendly. "Designer Only" web designers do actually have their place, by providing some good creative ideas for design, but those ideas need to be filtered through someone that has a good fundamental understanding of SEO (search engine optimization). I have used "designer only" designers in the past for creative input on websites, a different point of view for a logo, etc., but when it comes down to actually developing the site, there is no substitute for someone who can do both.
You may be asking, "How am I supposed to know the difference"? Here are two simple questions you should ask a potential web designer before giving them the green light:
1. "Do you do design only, or do you also do SEO?" If they answer "design only", then ask for some samples of their work (they might be able to assist on the design), then keep looking. If they answer "yes", then ask...
2. "What are the names of three main meta tags on a website?" If they get that deer-in-the-headlights look, you know they don't really know much about SEO. The answer to that question is, "The title tag, the description tag, and the keyword tag" (If they know about SEO, they will know what they are, but will probably have various opinions about their importance).
Just answering those two questions will get you through 98% of the designers.
When we designed our website, we used two "Designer Only" web designers who were very helpful in developing some visual elements of our site. But both of them would tell you up-front that SEO is not their thing. I should mention that there are also SEO specialists who can help you get higher rankings on a search engine, but do not have much creativity when it comes to the actual design elements for a website (and I know several that would also tell you that up-front). Both are valuable, but have their limitations.
The main point I am trying to make here is that if you are designing a website to bring you lots of web traffic from Google or some other search engine, don't hire a "Designer Only" designer to do the entire project. Have someone that can help with the SEO part, or have someone that does both. One of the reasons I like "Designer Only" designers is that they provide extra employment for me. When six months go by, and the client is getting zero traffic to their site, I get paid to fix the problems caused by the original poor design.
Santa Clarita is a great town with a number of talented web designers, and SEO specialists, but make sure you do your due diligence.
Hope this helps!
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