5 ways to ruin an Internet Marketing Campaign

Anyone who says web design or development is easy lies, anyone who says internet marketing is easy is more of a liar … SEO isn’t just about links or blogging, its about user experience from A to Z. From them clicking a link to your website to converting and then the after care. Those who do think it is easy will probably sell you some kind of CMS, never explain how it really works and even worse no doubt give you some hap-hazard template which has bad code, uses flash and is well to be blunt shit!
Below are just 5 things that can ruin an SEO campaign, there are many more and many worse than the below. But these are the things I see again and again, and more so wish I didn’t see ever. SEO is about more than just one thing.

<h4><strong>Flash</strong> - Yse of flash is not only something that limits usability of a website, but in a world of advanced JavaScript (such as jQuery and MooTools) as well as the upcoming CSS3 and HTML 5, flash today has no place on any website. (Unless maybe you are embeding a video from another site ).</h4>
<h4><strong>Bad Coding</strong> - I can't begin to go into details on this, just go back to my first few posts and you will see the perfect coding styles of a website. But so many websites don't have clean code it is more annoying than anything. Well almost, but if you code isn't clean and concise search engines will struggle to find content, meaning and subjects within the content. A good way to check your code is to validate it using the <a title="website validator" href="http://validator.w3.org/" target="_blank">W3C validator</a>, though it must be said validation doesn't always mean good, clean, concise code.</h4>
<h4><strong>Non-Tabular Tables</strong> - By this I mean the use of tables to hold something none data. So it's holding an image or bunch of content for some reason. Doing this not only makes for untidy code but will make things harder for search engines to understand. Search engines will see a table in rows and not in layout, this is why layout is now done using CSS styling to make content easier to find, layouts easier and also to enable user accessible content.</h4>
<h4><strong>Frames</strong> - I admit I generally don't see frames (iFrames) much anymore, but when I do they are badly implemented. In my eyes the only time to use a frame is for when you are using the new 3D secure systems. In practice to a search engine, a frame simply is a link and nothing more, even if you add a no-follow tag the page you link to will be indexed. Even Google (in my experience) doesn't obey this no-follow tag.</h4>
<h4><strong>Splash Pages</strong> - These seems to be making a comeback much to my annoyance. A splash page is nothing but a barrier to the user, the only time it ever is of use is if you have a massive sale (or fixture like <a title="MCFC" href="http://mcfc.co.uk" target="_blank">Manchester City</a> sometimes use it to sell tickets and announce new products in the online store). Having a splash page also means that all kudos goes to this page with one link on it to your second "home page" ... where as for SEO you would rather all pages your "real" homepage share the link juice over your website and not just to a single page.</h4>

Sadly this is a load of bad news for a lot of websites. However, it can all be fixed with a bit of work. Search this site and you will see just how to fix them.

You can also get personal help by leaving a comment below or tweeting @andykinsey

2 Comments on “5 ways to ruin an Internet Marketing Campaign”

  1. I notice with respect to point one many of the worlds top brands e.g nike, rolls royce cars, rolex, moet & chandon, lots of innovative and artistic sites featured on thefwa.com, and multi million dollar entertainment groups like zynga (farmville et al) all use flash to present their brand.
    Your basically saying they’re all wrong and you know better than some of the world’s biggest creative agencies that have made these sort of sites, and that nobody should ever use flash no matter if they’re a household name and world class leader in their field.

    Can you qualify further why they’re wrong, perhaps give some examples of world class brands you’ve worked with and how you’ve provided a better brand message and user experience than these elite design agencies while not using anything fancy.

    This would be interesting and handy for all other anti-flash seo people when arguing to make plain and simple text based sites.

    1. Hi Martin, Thanks for the reply and questioning of my article.
      In reply to what you say I should clarify that I know flash has it’s place in the web world for games and videos. I do not think content should (other than video) should be included within flash and I certainly don’t think a website should be built in flash completely. If you really must use flash then be kind to your none flash users and search engines and have a second none flash version of your site too.

      I have taken a look at a few of the sites on FWA and in specific a few of the ones you mention. I’ve dug around a little and found that they are using flash to accent the website and it is not the whole website. For example nike use it for video’s, rolls royce use it as a back-layer (z-indexed) flash banner … they do not use it for the whole site and not the main content. And this backs my point that flash has it’s uses, I mean where would advertising be without flash banners?, but flash is not for content per-say.

      I hope this clears up where I stand on this. If not feel free to ask more questions.

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