What is an “Organic” Search Engine Result?

I thought I should clarify my use of the word “organic”, for those of you who may not know. When you conduct a search, say, on Google.com, you’ll see some search results (usually in a yellow or colored box) that are paid advertisements, meaning someone bought ad space to appear as a result when someone googles certain keywords.

I just Googled “best red lipstick” and a sponsored ad from Maybelline appeared. This is a PAID search result, not an ORGANIC one.

Organic search engine results

An organic search result is one that search engine algorithms have determined is the most relevant to the person doing the search, based on their keywords (and their cookies, but that’s a topic for another day) as well as a whole slew of other factors related to the website content, website traffic and social media integration.

There is an ART and a SCIENCE to SEO (search engine optimization).

In other words, the art and science of search engine optimization is crucial to increasing your online footprint and implementing strategic online marketing.  The result of intentionally implementing SEO into your online marketing strategy is a high ranking on consumer searches on Google, Bing and Yahoo, pushing the traffic of internet searchers and consumers to YOUR WEBSITE FIRST. ;-)

If you’re struggling with your business or organization search engine ratings, LuHow Designs can help.  Contact us today, we’d love to assist you with your online marketing needs.

So you need a new website? Where do you start?

As a website designer and developer, I have seen clients go around in circles trying to figure out what they want their website to be, what the purpose of it is, how they want it to look, feel, perform. They lose precious time when they approach their project without thinking it through and mapping it out first.  If you are considering creating a website for the first time or re-designing the one you have, you must know this important truth:

The PURPOSE of your business or organization will determine WHY your website exists and HOW it will help you accomplish your goals.

Determining the purpose of your business or organization, as well as the audience or customer you are targeting, is crucial to driving the strategy (look, feel, function, everything) of your website.  What do you want your website to do that will help you accomplish your business goals?

Once these questions are answered, we try to ask more questions to help decipher our client’s online strategy but ultimately one of the most helpful things our clients end up doing is our suggestion that they spend some time critically exploring the internet on their own and jotting down websites they like and don’t like, whether it’s design or functionality, whether it has to do with their type of business or not. This really helps them to see what’s out there, what the possibilities are for them to pursue and begin imagining what it can look and feel like on their own website.

Perhaps your business goal is to increase your revenue by 20% but there is competition that appears above your business on search engines.  We LOVE the challenge of boosting our clients in search engines so that they organically appear above their competition! And our websites, integrated with social media and email marketing, have the power to do this, if done correctly.

We always have our clients setup their own domain and hosting accounts in their name or their business name and the websites we build for them (complete with cheat sheets and tutorials!) are theirs, they have full ownership and are never obligated or under contract to hire us again if they don’t want to. We have seen TOO many people “lose” their websites, destined to wander the earth separated from the website they thought they owned.

If you are looking to get started with your online marketing strategy, LuHow Designs can help you!  Contact us today for a FREE one hour consultation that, whether or not you hire us for the job, will give you clarity and a place to start accomplishing your business/organization’s goals!

E-Commerce website design/development

This is the most amazing jersey display system!  I just redesigned their website!  Check it out: ultramountdisplays.com

Is Your Website Static or Dynamic?

There are many static websites on the Internet, I designed some of them!  There are especially a lot of static websites in North Platte, Nebraska where I live and work.  A static website is the traditional way to build a website – it’s an easy way to get something up and going and they are cheap to host, but you really have to know coding (like someone with web design/development skills) to edit it and keep it updated.   You may not be able to tell right away but if the site looks basic, and gives you information without anything cool happening, it could be a static website.

Although a static website can be fairly cheap to develop in the short run, they could be costly to maintain in the long run because of the growing number of pages and the need for help from a web developer who knows the code, AND, what people don’t realize is that the site is usually not very useful for the user and that the content can get stagnant, which is not conducive to site ranking high on search engines.  They give the user and the search engine (like Google) exactly the same response over and over again.

Dynamic sites on the other hand can be more expensive to develop initially, but the advantages are numerous.  A dynamic website can give the website owner the ability to simply update and add new content to the site. For example, news and events could be posted to the site through a simple browser interface. There is really no end to the features that can be added to a dynamic site.

Dynamic features enhance the user experience and most often result in an increase in traffic and added time spent on the site. Some examples of dynamic website features could be: forms, photo albums, content management system (CMS), e-commerce (selling stuff online), forums or discussion boards, newsletter, contact forms, detailed searches, social networking (connecting the site to Facebook, Twitter and other social sites), intricate calculators, RSS feeds (like a theater’s latest movie listings or recent news from CNN), ability for administrators or users to create content or add information to a site (dynamic publishing), without worrying about “breaking” something in the core code and thus, disabling or seriously disabling the website.

Advantages of dynamic websites

  • Much more functional website
  • Ability to continue adding dynamic features
  • Much easier to update
  • Deliver information to a wider audience
  • New content brings people back to the site and helps in the search engines
  • Can work as a system to allow support staff or other users to collaborate

Disadvantages of dynamic websites

  • Usually takes longer and is more expensive to develop
  • Hosting costs a little more

Many sites from the last decade are static, but more and more people are realizing the advantages of having a dynamic website. Dynamic websites can make the most of your site and either use it as a tool or create a professional, interesting experience for your visitors.  Here is an example of a static website  AND Here is an example of a dynamic website. (I created both of these, by the way….the static site is about 6 years old).  When I first started designing web sites I created a lot of static ones, since then I have redeisgned my old static sites into dynamic sites for my clients in North Platte, Nebraska, Denver, Colorado and across the U.S.  What remains the same is that I listen to what my clients need and I help them step by step to accomplish the web presence they desire, that will accomplish their goals.

If you have any questions or comments, please add yours to the post interaction or contact us.