The Developer, The SEO Specialist: How to Play Nice
The SEO Specialist and Web Developer relationship is very important. If the communication between the two is lax, the client is the one who suffers. I have been developing websites for the past six years, and until recently I have not had the opportunity to work with an in-house SEO specialist. The communication between us was rocky in the beginning, mainly because I did not understand the SEOs needs and they did not understand mine.
In this article I will not go into tips for developing an SEO friendly site, but discuss how to play nice with all the players involved in building a successful website. If your interested in some SEO tips, check this out, 20 Hard Core SEO Tips by Michael Martinez
Trying to make the designer understand why they should not use obscure fonts for important headline text to relaying how a web site should be structured in the development phase to maximize search engine visibility can be a tricky process. It’s extremely important to address the roles of each person in a web sites development. Coming up with that process and sticking to it will insure a successful SEO Strategy.
As we know, content is King! Without giving users solid information, the web sites success is already flawed. Once a design has been finalized and before development begins, the content should be researched, edited and approved by a qualified SEO Specialist and reviewed with the programming team. In development, I find it helps when I understand what the SEO is trying to accomplish. A list of deliverables I receive from the SEOs are as follows:
- Content for each page of the site, including linking structure. (internal as well as external linkage)
- All meta data such as title tags and description.
- All headlines needed per page clearly defined.
- If the site is dynamic (fed from a database), what keywords, such as product names if the site is product based for example, could create qualified internal linkage.
Developer’s need to stay in contact with the SEO to address any questions or ideas the developer may have come up with during the development process. In order for developer’s to know which questions to ask, he or she MUST educate themselves about SEO and keep up with the latest techniques. This will allow for an educated conversation between the SEO and the developer.
Once the site has been developed, it needs to be tested and re-tested by the SEOs to insure the website was developed as discussed. From this point the site must be consistently monitored by the SEO. The days of throwing a website together, uploading it and forgetting about it are long gone. A websites success in today’s world wide web needs to be constantly monitored and improvements implemented.