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Monday, March 2, 2009

Some things are best left to the professionals

When I win the lottery, I’m going to have my yard professionally landscaped and the interior of my house redecorated. With the Mega Millions lottery up to $212 million this week, lots of people are probably making plans for their sure winnings. As my husband and I discussed it last night, it occurred to me that we had a whole list of things we’d like to have done around the house. Not because we can’t do them ourselves, but rather because there are people out there with the talent to do them much better than we can and have.

Web design and search engine optimization kind of fall into those categories as well. Just as there are nifty landscaping and decorating tools we can use to make improvements at our home, there are lots of automated software programs that will help the Average Joe build a basic site or do some semblance of search engine optimization. However, without the knowledge of how to use what and when, Average Joe most likely will end up with a site that won’t perform on the search engines or convert visitors to leads.

Successful website design and search engine optimization aren’t about the tools you use. It’s about understanding the balance between graphic design and content; the content needs and requirements of search engines and site visitors; organizational and structural best-practices for user conversion; and the ins and outs of Internet strategy to stay ahead of your competitors. You can’t find those things in the help menu of a software program.