Building your website is like building with LEGOS

Most of the time when I meet with new customers regarding their website, their first goal is to have their site get noticed. They want that site to appear with top search results on google and bring in lots of potential visitors to hear about their company. They realize that with strong organic (unpaid) search results in google they would not have to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars a month on paid ads (adwords) or they may be able to reduce their traditional marketing expenses. As with anything that is highly prized – it takes an enormous amount of work to achieve top search rankings on the most popular search terms for your business. Sure, you might be able to easily win the search for your company name or other specific phrases but when you drill into the data to see what people are actually searching for, the task to win results for these very popular search terms is more difficult to achieve. Here is an illustration to help you to grasp the amount of work that is involved.

Imagine you are given the opportunity to build a billboard for your business on the busiest street in town. All of your customers will regularly drive by this sign, it will put you ahead of all of your competition and it will get you noticed by new potential customers that would have no other way to know you exist. This sign will be at a prime site, it will stand there for years and it won’t cost you any monthly rent. But there is one catch! You have to build that billboard out of LEGOS. After the initial excitement of realizing you get to play with LEGOS, you realize that this is going to take an incredible amount of work.

This illustration is comparable to the amount of work that is necessary to invest into creating a quality website that has strong search engine results. Brick by brick, or I should say “word by word”,  you are going to build quality content for your website to create the story that google interprets as your website. It is going to take hundreds of pages and articles built over the course of years. Here are some of the elements that may help you to visualize the scope of work involved.

  • This is going to take a lot of LEGOS: In the case of your website it is going to take a lot of words and articles. As a fun example there is a LEGO brick artist that actually built a billboard out of LEGOS. His billboard was 15 x 35 ft and took 500,000 bricks. In your case if you are just getting started on building a website that can get noticed by google you will need to start smaller. Imagine a billboard that is 5 x 11 feet. This would take about 35,000 LEGOS. If you compared the process of building each LEGO brick to writing words for your pages and articles, it would take 140 pages with 250 words to build a website with 35,000 words that is now going to start to get some notice on google. (Note this article is about 1,000 words.)
  • You need a foundation and structure: Just like the LEGO billboard, your website content needs a foundation and structure. There is no glamour in this work, it may take weeks or months to build a strong foundation for your website and just like the foundation and structure of the billboard there isn’t even a sign yet after all this work. In the case of your website this may be the platform or framework you use to develop your website (example WordPress). From there, it may be the strategic thinking about what your communication goals are regarding the core message and call to action for your site, analyzing who your audiences will be and what you want them to know about your company.
  • Its going to take time: The process of building a billboard from LEOGS would take months or years and so is the time to earn strong search results from google. In the example above of a small sign/site that has 140 pages or articles at 250 words each, at the rate of 2 articles a week this will take you over two years to build. The larger your company and the more people you have creating quality content for your website, the larger the sign you will be able to build. In my experience it takes a lot of focus and discipline to consistently create quality content for your site.
  • The payoff is big: In this billboard advertising example, a prime billboard may cost $2,500/month to rent. If you had the opportunity to gain this type of exposure through a prime placed billboard that spoke directly to your target audience and continually brought you new customers, the expense would be well worth it. If you had the opportunity to build this through sweat equity, like my LEGO example, you would have to seriously consider the proposition. This is exactly the opportunity that you have on the web, in fact, the opportunity is even greater.  By studying what your customers are actually searching for, learning how they are getting to your site, understanding how they are getting to your competitors websites, you will gain deep insights to your own business. You will better understand your customers needs and create messages and products to do a better job selling to them. As you create quality content that begins to get noticed on google you will generate a broader mix of new customers. This flow of new customers will be small at first while your “billboard” is beginning to take shape, but as the message on your site becomes clear and the quality of content improves the payoff is big!

If you are interested in improving your Google search results, call one of our consultants to discuss how to develop relevant content for your website.  We just like to be available to help and we think that planning and strategizing for this content is almost as much fun as playing with Legos.  Call 614/594-0046.