How to do a really bad website

One thing that constantly surprises me is that there are quite a large number of “professional” website designers around who produce websites that are both very amateur and almost entirely ineffective in terms of findability in the search engines. How do they do this?

First they create a lovely picture to grace the homepage. Why’s that a problem? Well, usually the picture is very large, filling the homepage and there’s, at best, a line of text saying “click to enter”. This causes problems in that it takes ages to download the picture and as far as the search engines are concerned the only searchable text is “click to enter” which is hardly a phrase one is likely to use to find a site.

Second, they produce pages filled with lovely photos, often animated. That’s not a problem if the photos are small enough but usually they put them on full size. One example I looked at this morning had so many photos that it crashed the browser which implies that nobody will be able to look at those pages. They also had only photos ie no text so the page was blank to the search engines.

Finally, they put everything in graphics. This has the effect that the page takes longer than usual to download but more importantly, it’s completely blank to the search engines: in some cases you can’t even find the page by searching for the name of the place.

These designers are professional only in the sense that they charge for their services. Don’t be taken in by them!

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