Already the title is clear, what will be discussed in this article: online business card should die.
What is usually meant by a business card site? This is a relatively small site where information about the company, basic services and work contacts is presented. As a rule, its dimensions range from 5 to 15 pages, in very rare cases increasing to 20-40. The goal of the business card site has always been the same: to get online as quickly as possible and, as a rule, with a small budget. The logic of managers at this stage is extremely uncomplicated and simple: “all competitors are already on the Internet, which means that we also need to be there”. Tasks on the Internet are not outlined, understanding how to attract customers online, not yet. The main thing to get involved - but we'll see.
I have witnessed such interesting moments with my own eyes hundreds of times and I know by heart all the possible "rakes" that leaders of companies at this stage are attacking. If there is no person in the staff of a company with successful experience in organizing sales on the Internet, the “go online first time” stage is doomed to failure. At the same time, a lot of energy is spent on resolving issues that, as it turns out later, do not cost anything at all: what colors to recommend to designers for use, which fonts to choose, which engine to use. The number of nerve cells spent by the customer at this stage exceeds all conceivable and inconceivable limits. To convince him that it is not necessary to begin with this is practically impossible. Information visualization is the main and almost the only criterion for evaluating the work of the contractor. And this is a very subjective factor that cannot be measured in principle.
But now, after a long debate about the choice of "cold" or "warm" colors, the site finally starts. And sobering comes very quickly: the existence of a site on the network is not enough to attract customers. The search for executors to attract targeted traffic begins, through trial and error comes the understanding that the main work does not take place at the site launch stage, but much later. And this work is not a one-time, but a permanent one. If all the bumps bring business owners to a new level of understanding of Internet marketing, then very soon the company, in addition to external optimizers, begins to recruit its own employees to this front of work. If among the channels for attracting the target audience there is natural search traffic (and it should be present, if there is an adequate assessment of all channels), then the website-business card is always modified according to the same principle - it starts to grow by the number of pages. Unfortunately, this understanding does not always come or not immediately.
Two extremes in building site structure
The site is growing for one reason: comes the comprehension of the basic axioms of search engine promotion. It lies in the fact that it is impossible in principle to promote any site on any request. You can promote only the page that is relevant to a particular request. And an insight comes - it turns out that the structure (and, therefore, navigation through the site) is much more important than the debate about the "warm" and "cold" colors.
And here, as a rule, there is a bias in the opposite direction. People who make decisions for the Internet direction in the firm and completely underestimate the role of the site structure at the start, begin to overestimate the role of traffic. The entire site is rebuilt in such a way as to create as many landing pages as possible, optimized for various requests. What kind of page it is, what it is dedicated to, what its role in the general system of page hierarchy does not matter. They are created massively and duplicate each other in meaning. However, they are relevant to synonymous queries. Here is an example from real life, when on one site, which is dedicated to the production of plastic windows, you can find four subsections in the "Services" section:
- installation of plastic windows;
- installation of plastic windows;
- installation of PVC windows;
- installation of PVC windows.
As if it’s really about four different types of services! The logic of the creators at this stage is clear: if there is a request that has not yet been “heaped up”, then you need to create a landing page for it.
With a greater or lesser degree of idiocy, this is the only motion vector to remake the business card site.
It should be? On the role of a wide semantic core and a relevance map
Meanwhile, the only right decision is to create the right structure and navigation even at the site development stage. Accordingly, its semantic core (as wide as possible) must be created BEFORE the work begins.
Where to get semantics? In fact, this is not such an idle request as it seems. For many, the main source for collecting semantics is Yandex.Wordstat. But it can only help in the collection of basic semantic clusters. It is completely unsuitable (well, persuaded, unsuitable) for working with low-frequency queries. And I am convinced that at the start of any commercial site should rely on the "low frequency".
There are two main ways that are successfully used in our agency "VelikaPlaza". The first way is to work with open services statistics of competing sites. Moreover, the more sites developed, the more “working” will be the semantic core. The second way is to use special software. There is nothing especially to puzzle over, the Key Collector of Alexander Lyustik fully meets our requirements. I must say that our requirements are quite high, and we ourselves developed our own software. But Lustik's decision turned out to be both cheaper and not less functional. Another plus of this product is that it is maintained and improved, which is important for us. By the way, the second way partially solves the problems and the first way, that is, the K-Collector statistics services are also trying to work.
After the widest semantic core has been created, it must be ruthlessly cleaned. Delete all keys that can be attributed to one of the following items:
- Random. Despite the fact that they may be targeted, the probability of their reproduction during the year is extremely small. Here are examples of such keys: "buy an Audi car in Khimki at a discount from an authorized dealer", "selling wholesale clothing of Italian brands with delivery in Rostov";
- Garbage. Keys that contain the occurrences we need, but at the same time diluted with stop words. (For each topic and even each site, stop words can have their own. I would also include here the so-called regional keys, built on the principle of "entry + region". Examples of such keys are: "install elevator equipment download", "houses from a bar Nizhny Novgorod to buy "(the last example is for the site of the Moscow region);
- Adjacent. This group of keys must include all keys that may be targeted. However, the key phrases will only be optional for your business. We believe that at the start such keys should be completely excluded, or add them in portions.
- Keys with blurred relevancy. This includes all monosyllabic RF requests. What is the user searching for "pizza"? Will this request be relevant to the manufacturer of the pizza? A site with pizza recipes? If you are not sure that your request is entirely and completely (a request exclusively from your field of activity), you should refuse it. But it can be not only monosyllabic requests. Here are examples of complex requests with "blurred" relevance: "site consultant" (what is the person looking for on this request - sites with a vacancy of sales assistants or the site of the company "Consultant +"?), "Download fight club" film?).
Even after careful manual elimination of all key phrases, you should have a rather impressive list in your hands. Now there is practically no one left in which all the traffic would collect 1-2 keys (although they still exist). What to do with this list? Next you need to create site relevance map - This is a map of conformity, which page should be landing for this key. And the relevance map should not be frivolous, it should be based primarily on a reasonable site navigation. Landing sections should not just exist in a vacuum. They should be part of the overall structure of the site, a structure that fully responds to your business, which makes it easier (and not harder) to navigate the site and find the section you need. And only after creating a relevance map you need to start discussing the design and selection of fonts. But it will be a completely different story, because after this work your site will be very difficult to call a business card site.
So should a business card site die?