You could let a web designer take the lead on your web development project but if you did you'd be making a big mistake. Don't get me wrong, I love web designers, I employ web designers, you NEED web designers but you should NEVER let them lead a web project.

To explain where I'm coming from I'll outline how I think a typical web project should look. To help with this I'll create a fictional but typical company with a typical requirement.

Out of the Park are an events management company. They have a website but it was built 5 years ago and has been sadly neglected. The company have recognised their site could be better.

Typically they would contact a web designer and start talking about logos, layouts, widgets, colours, photographs in fact everything except the things they should be talking about. This is WRONG!

The first step should be to figure out what success looks like, in very broad terms. For example in the case of our fictional company this might include:

  • Driving business into the company
  • Attracting media interest in the company
  • Communicating with clients
  • Managing and running client accounts

It may even be helpful to write a simple statement that captures the core requirements. Something like "We need a website that generates business and helps us better serve our clients". First off let's consider how we will generate business.

To generate business you will need to understand what people who could use your services search for. This comes under the general heading of keyword research. This isn't a web design discipline it's an SEO skill so if you are talking to a web designer before you are speaking to an SEO specialist you could be on the wrong track. In short they would be better off finding a good SEO expert before looking at the design of their website.

Now the site itself. For the website to perform in the search engines it needs to be built in a way that makes it easy for the search engines to understand. The site's technical structure is a key aspect of this and sadly most web designers don't fully understand this, again you need a company who can provide SEO services to make sure your shiny new site can be spidered and indexed by the search engines. Incidently we provide UK based SEO services.

Furthermore, it's one thing to appear in the search engines for a search phrase, it's another to appear in the first few pages or preferably the first page. Again this requires the skills of an SEO, not a web designer.

Inn simple terms, a good SEO expert and a good web designer can collaborate effectively to create a fantastic website that looks visually appealing and performs well in search engine rankings. Here's how they can work together:

1. Early collaboration: The SEO expert and web designer should begin their collaboration at the early stages of website development. By working together from the start, they can ensure that the website's structure, layout, and navigation are designed to be search engine friendly.

2. Keyword research and content planning: The SEO expert can research keywords to identify the terms and phrases relevant to the website's target audience. Based on this research, they can provide valuable insights to the web designer on strategically incorporating these keywords into the website's content.

3. On-page optimisation: The web designer can implement the SEO expert's recommendations for on-page optimisation. This includes optimising page titles, meta descriptions, headings, and URL structures to make them more search engine friendly. The web designer can also ensure the website is mobile-friendly, as optimisation is crucial for SEO.

4. User experience (UX) and design: A good web designer understands the importance of creating a positive user experience. They can work closely with the SEO expert to ensure the website's design elements, such as navigation menus, buttons, and forms, are intuitive and easy to use. This collaboration helps improve the website's overall usability, which can indirectly benefit SEO by reducing bounce rates and increasing user engagement.

5. Page load speed: The SEO expert and web designer should prioritise optimising the website's page load speed. The web designer can implement techniques like image optimisation, caching, and code minification to enhance the website's performance. This improves the user experience and helps with SEO since search engines favour fast-loading websites.

6. Responsive design: A good web designer will ensure that the website is responsive and adapts well to different screen sizes and devices. This is crucial for SEO as search engines prioritise mobile-friendly websites. The SEO expert can guide the web designer on the importance of the best responsive design practices and mobile optimisation.

7. Ongoing collaboration and updates: SEO is an ongoing process, and search engine algorithms change regularly. The SEO expert and web designer should maintain a collaborative relationship even after the website's launch. They can work together to monitor the website's performance, track analytics, and make necessary updates and improvements to optimise the website for search engines.

By combining the expertise of a good SEO expert and a good web designer, you can create a website that looks visually stunning and ranks well in search engine results, drives organic traffic, and provides an excellent user experience.

There are many skills that make up a web development team and it should now be clear that an SEO is a key skill and the sooner you start a dialogue with an SEO the better.

Inbound tips in your inbox

To get more great inbound marketing tips sign up to our blog and follow us on Twitter or Facebook.

New!  A plain-talking digital marketing podcast  Available in all the usual places  Grab it here
Free Site Audit  Yeah we know, website audits are overplayed.   But what if you could actually get a real expert to pick through your site and  tell you where you’re going wrong?  Get Your FREE Audit

Call us, email us or just click here to book a meeting