Planning, Developing, and Promoting Successful Small Business Websites

Table of Contents

Website Planning
Plan Your Web Site Effectively for Max Success

Types of Websites
Explore the types of Web Site Business Models

Site Types 2
More information on the strategic types of sites

Strategic Planning
Strategy Planning is essential to Success

Strategic Planning 2
Make sure your strategy is up to snuff

Strategic Planning 3
Technical Strategic Planning an Outsourcing Contract Work

Strategic Planning 4
More on Outsourcing Contract Work

Content Planning
Deciding what will go on your business site and who will provide it

Content Planning 2
Determing a schedule for content management

Content Planning 3
Automation for Content Syndication

Keyword Planning Suggestions on preparing keyword research for your site.

Information Architecture
Brainstorming and organizing the architecture of your website.

Information Architecture 2
More discussion on the lower tiers of site heirarchy

Technology Planning Scaleability considerations for large and growing sites.

Tech Planning 2Weighing the value of flash technology.

Budgetary Planning
Creating a budget and using it effectively

Budgetary Planning 2
What type of web host will you need?

Budgetary Planning 3
Labor related expenses for site creation

Budgetary Planning 4
Measuring financial success and ROI

Developing a Web Site

Design and Development
Establishing the importance of credibility in design.

Form Versus Function
Establishing the design priorities of a site.

Writing the Initial Code
Programming considerations for when you get down to programming.

Web Design Coding

Design and Layout


Psychology Considerations

Website Colors

User Satisficing

Validation and Usability Testing

Usability Testing

Search Engine Friendly

Webpage Development

Title Tags

SEO Variables

Promoting a Web Site

Promotion and Analysis

Offline Promotion

Pay-Per-Click Advertising


PPC Tools

Search Engine Optimization

SEO History

Google History

E-mail Marketing

Website Analysis


Planning, Developing, and Promoting a Successful Small Business Website

Small Business Webpage Promotion
Page 39

SEO History

From the inception of the Internet there were virtually no laws governing behavior and conduct. The standards of the Internet could be equated to the “wild west” at the turn of the century in many ways. They are both predominately self-governed entities. In the last ten years, society has worked towards making the Internet a more civilized place, but the governing standards are still being intensely debated. This is especially true in the field of web site design and search engine optimization. The motives for unethical behavior on the Internet are high, being the tremendous growth, and sheer volume of people using the Internet to shop, get information, and communicate with others. Establishing common standards for ethical search engine optimization will be important to keeping information relevant and useful to users while still being equitable to those who create the content.

Since the beginning of search engines in the times when the World Wide Web (web) was just a collection of scientific research papers, it could be said that there were search engine optimizers (SEO). In fact, the first optimizers were also the first to create a search engine.
At this stage in the game, people were creating pages of links to their favorite documents. In April 1994, two Stanford University Ph.D. candidates, David Filo and Jerry Yang, created some pages that became rather popular. They called the collection of pages Yahoo! Their official explanation for the name choice was that they considered themselves to be a pair of yahoos.
As the number of links grew and their pages began to receive thousands of hits a day, the team created ways to better organize the data. In order to aid in data retrieval, Yahoo! ( became a searchable directory. The search feature was a simple database search engine. Because Yahoo! entries were entered and categorized manually, Yahoo! was not really classified as a search engine. Instead, it was generally considered to be a searchable directory. Yahoo! has since automated some aspects of the gathering and classification process, blurring the distinction between engine and directory.

David Filo and Jerry Yang were trying to get their favorite information seen by others by gaining it more exposure. Good structure and some tricky coding accomplished the task of making their information more available. They were not questioned about ethics at the time because no one was real sure of exactly what they were doing yet. Search engine optimization is a specialized trade that requires both technical skills and business marketing knowledge. It is only with the combination of these two skills that one can properly learn and implement SEO techniques to obtain high search engine listings. Good structure from a marketing and web site development standpoint is not generally questioned; it is mostly the tricky coding that often gets examined in regards to ethical behavior.

The Yahoo’s who were among the first to implement SEO techniques were probably unaware of the growth that this field would eventually see, or even that they were contributing to the humble beginnings of an entire industry. Yahoo! is now in some ways in direct competition with SEO personnel. Non-ethical SEOs are natural enemies of the search engines as they seek to manipulate the search engine results. The goal of search engines is to provide the most relevant information to their users. Search engine optimizers have been seen in a negative light over the past five years or so since there are many in the industry that employ “unethical” techniques in their tricky coding. This has been a hot topic since the standards of ethics in regards to search engines have never been fully disclosed by the search engines. The only definition of unethical behavior from the search engines has been insisting that web sites do not “spam” them. Yes, spam is not only in e-mailboxes, it is in Yahoo! searches too. This definition is extremely vague, and gives search engines the opportunity to penalize sites for any reason under the catch all category of “spam”.

A good example of search engine spam would be web site in the mid 1990’s that typed words like, “Pamela Anderson” in the same color text as their background thousands of times in hopes of receiving visits from some of the millions of people that were searching for that phrase. A site that sells music compact discs would have no reason to have that phrase on their page except to deceive users into visiting their site. While this is a crude and very ineffective example, it gives the layman some idea of similar types of techniques that are being used today. This method is a simplified example of a technique called “keyword stuffing” that is used in many other various forms for the sake of receiving higher SERPs and ultimately more web site traffic. Many of the techniques have become very sophisticated, but are in essence still diluting the level of relevance that search results provide to users. While this does fall under the catch all of “spam”, the techniques and factors which are deemed as “ethical” could be defined in much further depth.



(All in a single document) Appendix 1-1: Overture Search Term
Research Tool

Appendix 1-2: Wordtracker Search Query Research Tool

Appendix 1-3: Google Sets Website Theme Research Tool

Appendix 1-4: Reach/ Acquire/ Convert/ Retain

Appendix 2-5: Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth Information Architecture Flowchart

Appendix 2-6: Search Engine Themes Pyramid Information Architecture Example

Appendix 2-7: Webpage Download Time by File Size Chart

Appendix 2-8: Expected Locations for Common E-commerce Elements

Appendix 2-9: Website Usability Checklist

Appendix 2-10: Text Vs.Code Ratio/ Content Near the Top of Souce Code Examples

Appendix 3-11: Overture Bid Price Tool

Appendix 3-12: Webalizer Website Visitor Tracking Tool

Appendix 3-13: AW STATS Website Visitor Tracking Tool

3-14: Clicktracks Website Statistics
Analysis Tool


Author Notes

Additional Bonus:
101 Free Search Engine Optimization Tips

Work with a top search engine marketing company in Michigan. For your local search engine marketing and pay-per-click advertising needs.

©Copyright 2004 - Infinity
Planning, Developing, and Promoting a Successful Small Business Website

Meta4Creations - Strategic Internet Marketing Consulting
Corporate Internet Marketing Consultant