You may not be aware of this and im sure you’ll find it very interesting! Despite the time and effort that your web designer has put into creating a beautiful website for your company, Google – the biggest search engine in the world doesn’t even care what it looks like! This may seem like a bold statement, but this article will explain to you exactly why it is true; Google and all the other big search engines including Yahoo and MSN cannot even see what your website looks like!
So, in order to explain, letâ€™s start at the beginning. It’s important to know exactly what Google is and why it is there in the first place. Google is a huge network of linked computers dotted around the planet in locations called data centres. The purpose of these computers is simply to visit as many web pages as possible and store the text content that they find there so that it can be used to power their search results.
The sole aim of search engines (aside from making money) is to return useful and relevant results from user searches for specific keywords. For example if I were to type ‘web design Barnsley’ into Google, they would want to return the most useful websites that were genuinely relevant to the search key phrase ‘web design barnsley’.
In order to perform this task, Google and the other search engines employ software programs on their computers called search engine robots or ‘bots’. The purpose of these bots is to follow the links between web pages that they find on the internet, extract the text content that they find on each page and then move on to the next web page on its ‘to do list’. At no point during this process does Google or any other search engine stop to check out the intricacies of your company logo or stop to admire the lovely lighting effects that have been designed by your website designer. They simply take the text content, store it and move on! Think about it. Consider the mammoth numbers of websites on the internet, search engines donâ€™t have the time to stop and think – they have more sites to visit!
Still not convinced? Letâ€™s look at something else. Your website is made up from programming code called HTML which is used to structure the text and images that you have on your web pages. If you select view > source from the toolbar above you can see the HTML code that is used to make up this page! This is similar to what Google sees when it arrives at your site and this is where your optimised search engine content has to go in order for you to be able to rank well in Google and the other search engines.
By considering the differences between the way the search engines view your site and the way you and I see the site, you can begin to appreciate the need to build content rich websites which provide search engines with the useful content that they are coming to your site to find. Of course having an attractive website is important. It will allow you to portray a professional image and encourage users to make online orders and enquiries. It is more important in my opinion to realise that without useful content, which is focused around your target key phrases, having a beautiful website design will do you little good, since the search engines will have no reason to send any traffic your way.