Web 2012

Every organization needs a website. However, the days of a 10 page site are over. Your website should be useful for customers and enticing for prospects. Maybe it’s time for a makeover?

  1. Play the us and them game. Create a spreadsheet with a column for your website and columns for competitors.
  2. Then list look/feel, menu options, message/text, etc. If they all are roughly the same, then you’ve got a blueprint for what to change.
  3. Your website should be at a major web host and not tied to your facility – business continuity and escape hardware capital cost and time consuming web server maintenance.
  4. Better start using something with standards like Expression Web 4 – get the Pro version and you’re set for graphics and video editing too.
  5. The site should be HTML5 and utilize schema.org for better search results with Google, Bing, and Yahoo.
  6. Avoid fully unsupported features by all browsers like the canvas.
  7. Everything is a DIV – eliminate tables.
  8. Unless you haven’t gotten the memo, flash is dead, will leave a negative impression, and won’t be found on search.
  9. Plan on spending at least $200 with iStock or your favorite for photos or video.
  10. Have your keywords or categories ready and listed for how you want customers to find you with search.
  11. While researching, click related searches in Google or Bing for other keyword/content ideas.
  12. Create content to answer your audience needs, automate, or aggragate.
  13. Start with the bottom line and fill in to support.
  14. DON’T bore with tell the agenda, tell each agenda item, and tell again the summary of the agenda.
  15. If you can, tell a story.
  16. There’s got to be something fun and different for your audience and to separate from the competition – THINK.
  17. Video is currently a major content differentiator.
  18. Authority on the web is through quality content and quality links.
  19. Since the advent of NOFOLLOW links, your main source of links and ones you directly control are your own content.
  20. Successful sites must have more than 100 pages of quality content that is useful to the audience and not reprinted or minimially changed from other sites.
  21. 500+ pages will be the watermark for 2013.
  22. Everything is a little bit bigger. 1024 x 768 is the lowest resolution of your audience.
  23. Test for the top 3 browsers of Internet Explorer, Chrome, and Firefox.
  24. The look should be open and clean with headers and footers stretching the width of the page.
  25. Ditch the distracting background image.
  26. The most common font for major publishers on the web is Georgia.
  27. Font size is larger and usually the same for screen and print like 12 pt.
  28. General layout is header, nav, article, aside, and footer.
  29. Decide if you will incorporate the use of ads.
  30. Best ad locations are above the title of the page, middle of page content, or prominent placement on sidebar or aside.
  31. Use only one CSS file for faster page load speed.
  32. Don’t forget to add print formatting to CSS for all that good content.
  33. Generally header, nav, aside, and footer are not printed.
  34. .print and .noprint may be used for some elements such as a black logo instead of white on screen.
  35. List the full URL in parens in a smaller font for printed links on paper output.
  36. Simple HTML navigation with no java script.
  37. Highlights when hovering over menu options are fine, but remove visual borders around menu buttons.
  38. Drop down menu options offer 1 click for users, but many search bots still struggle with all those links on one page.
  39. Menu links should be anchor text for key words.
  40. Company or About menu option should always be last, with most useful audience menu options first from left to right.
  41. No one wants to hear you brag about your company – ever. If you presented a good impression and appealing story, then prospects may want to know more about the organization.
  42. Each page should have a link to About with either rel=author or rel=publisher  to denote the authentic source or author.
  43. About page should have a link to a Google Plus account with rel=me.
  44. Google Plus profile should link to the about page as a contributor such as www.kevinfream.com/about.htm.
  45. Signup for Google and Bing webmaster tools and analytics.
  46. Add the code for Google and Bing verification.
  47. Plan on tracking traffic weekly or monthly.
  48. It’s not the number of hits, but conversion that is important. Where is your audience going on your site and how do you respond?
  49. Use a generic e-mail address and password for all services that is not tied to an individual such as webmaster@yourdomain.com.
  50. Responsibilities change and companies are bought and sold – make transitions easy for you and your successor.
  51. Layout for home page can and should be different than sub pages.
  52. Nice visual layering effects can be done with divisions.
  53. Often the H1 tag is assigned to the logo on the home page – not typical for other pages.
  54. Home page link is www.yourdomain.com and not index.htm or default.htm.
  55. Meta title is limited to 69 characters.
  56. Meta description is limited to 156 characters.
  57. Current meta title trend is “brand: keyword, keyword, keyword”.
  58. The same is true of a descriptive meta sentence with brands toward or at the begining.
  59. Make sure to use the ALT tag for images to give search engines text to understand for images.
  60. Use itemscope and itemtype for major elements of a page from schema.org.
  61. Emphasize only 3-5 important elements on a page for microdata.
  62. Too much microdata may be considered SPAM or gibberish.
  63. Home page should have some elements that change daily, weekly, and monthly.
  64. If you choose to have a large ad or image rotator, change the pictures at least monthly.
  65. The concept is a funnel where you want to direct the audience to 3-5 major choices.
  66. Important choices or calls to action should be above the fold – before you scroll down to see the rest of the page.
  67. Every page should have buttons for like, follow, plus, etc. from AddtoAny or similar service.
  68. Other services like Addthis and Sharethis have better websites and offer analytics, but are difficult to implement or don’t work properly in HTML5.
  69. You’ll also need a bit.ly account to further track hits on links from retweets, likes, and pluses.
  70. Old school thought of fitting everything on one page for 800 x 600 resolution, without scroll shows lack of content and looks ridiculous on large monitors.
  71. You rarely sell anything on the web and shouldn’t think that way.
  72. Move the sale along until the user raises their hand to request contact, help, or next step in the process.
  73. Drop the testimonials as they are not third-party validation and the public perceives them as fake, purchased, or unrepresentative.
  74. Don’t use reprinted blog posts.
  75. Recent posts should only be original content useful for the audience.
  76. Spend some time on the footer – not the old duplicate navigation links.
  77. Modern footers have columns to help drive evaluation and conversion along with address and phone for localization and Social Media icons to view content at those services.
  78. Throw all images in an images folder.
  79. Then use Smushit to make them smaller and load faster without loss of visual quality.
  80. In HTML5 you write articles, the main section of the page.
  81. The article has an outline to use heading tags H1 – H4 for visual emphasis and keyword sections of the article.
  82. Try styling H1 with character spacing to achieve a unique look.
  83. Links are no longer underlined, but a different color from the text and the link is added when hovered. Don’t forget to change the color for visited links.
  84. Take extra time to plan folder structure for growth and to avoid moving pages and breaking links for search.
  85. Create a folder for each keyword or phrase and image having a hundred or more pages in each.
  86. Main category files should be in the root and associated pages in the category folder.
  87. All file names should be lower case and have keywords separated by dashes without unnecessary articles or prepositions.
  88. Simple tools like PowerPoint can be used to save pictures or slides with transitions as videos.
  89. Add quality content and value to fill the whole screen on each page concentrating on just one subject or keyword.
  90. Always have a clear call to action and links to other relevant pages or categories on each page.
  91. Generate and submit a sitemap.xml to Google and Bing – and of course regularly update when adding pages.
  92. Ditto for an RSS feed to syndicate the site and have other RSS services providing links and exposure.
  93. Use Google Alerts to monitor your key words, competitors, and customers.
  94. Social media is for broadcasting useful content to show authority on a subject and entice visitors to your web site.
  95. If you already don’t have a Gravatar, get one for a standard picture accross the web and verification it is really you.
  96. Facebook is for B2C and should be avoided unless you have stories, video, pictures, and ads to upload daily.
  97. Twitter is for listening to customers and competitors and daily links to valuable content preferrably from you. Twits are people who don’t understand this concept.
  98. Well done videos on YouTube not only separate you from the crowd, but provide invaluable search links from the description.
  99. LinkedIn is by far the best business social media site – effectively fill out your profile and your organization to show expertise and actually learn some things from others in groups.
  100. Remove the old stuff, add the new, monitor, and start generating content because your competition read this blog and has been posting new pages daily.


  1. Howdy, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just curious if you get a lot of spam responses? If so how do you reduce it, any plugin or anything you can suggest? I get so much lately it’s driving me mad so any assistance is very much appreciated.

    1. WordPress.com spam filtering is actually pretty good. I get about maybe a handful per month that are usually people foolishly still trying to get backlinks from comment garbage on blogs. If you’re having a lot of it, then I would review any apps and contact forms and also contact support.

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