What Makes a Website Successful?

Guest Post by Mona Pennypacker from Acorncs |

The web is a relatively mysterious place still for most ordinary folks, and yet more and more ordinary people are finding themselves obliged to begin trying their luck on the internet. Whereas up till even just a few years ago building/designing a website was something generally reserved for the ‘pros’ among us, these days all sorts of people are trying to build their own website, whether it be for professional purposes, to stimulate a network or promote a cause, or just simply to have a little fun and gain some experience in the meantime.

And what a lot of people are learning is that, lo and behold, simply putting together a website really isn’t all that difficult, especially with the kinds of cheap or even free software tools that make all the more technical aspects more digestible. Yet people that are serious about putting together a webpage don’t want to simply create a site: they want to create a successful site, and that certainly is a bit more challenging.

The reason for that is that there are constantly changing, loosely-defined ‘rules’ (if they can really be deemed as such) in cyberspace for what is considered a respectable–and therefore potentially successful-website.

Discovering what those guidelines are, and how/why they change, is in large part the secret to turning your ordinary site into the kind of site that you want it to be…one that attracts many visitors and really gets the ball rolling for you.

There are valuable resources on the web itself that can help you acquire some if not all of this knowledge, and a good deal of those resources come from the major search engines that dominate the internet: Google, Yahoo!, Bing, etc. Not only do they have very helpful webmaster forums where newbie cybernauts can ask their most pressing questions and get thorough answers, but they all offer documentation on the kinds of website quality guidelines (which may change with time, so it’s important to stay updated) that absolutely must be followed to develop a successful website. Let’s take a look at some–by no means all–of the most important of them:

– First and foremost, webmasters new and old must be sure that their websites are designed and filled with content that is actually meant for real, information-craving humans! While that may seem obvious, the fact of the matter is that many people try to “fool” the search engines with content and website architecture that aren’t at all intended for real web-surfers, but rather for the ‘bots’ that help determine such things as page rank, etc. Don’t even try this, as you will sooner or later be discovered and your website will be blacklisted for eternity.

– Next up, what you need to do to accomplish a successful website is start including the kinds of keywords/keyword phrases that you want people associating with your site into its written content (as well as into metatags). Don’t cram the site with such terms, but make sure that each page in your site has a few; and similarly, take a little time to actually research what kinds of keywords you should be competing for.

– Finally, start trying to get links to your site posted on other, reputable sites that have something (even remotely) to do with what your site is about. Again, don’t try to be sneaky here and don’t fall into the bad habit of using link schemes (also known as link farming), as that will end up hurting your site quite a bit. Just try to get the word out and where you can, have static links to your site included on sites you can reasonably assume to be legitimate.

This article was written by Mona Pennypacker of Acorn Creative Studio who specializes in web site design in Colorado.