Do DIY Website Builders Work For Small Business

Do DIY Website Builders Work For Small Business? For your little league team? Yes. For a small business that wants to grow? No. Here's why. 

Do DIY Website Builders Work For Small Business?

Getting your business online isn't what is used to be.

It used to be building and launching a brand new website was a big project. Planning, designing, producing content, and launching took months, and that new site was good for many years.

These were the good old days, where you took your current printed material and made a "Brochure Site".

Today, getting a responsive website online is absolutely critical, but it is just the starting point, not the finish line like it was 15, 10 or even 5 years ago.

SEO and SEM are now too important for small business owners not to understand and invest in. Because if you cannot be found online through search of customer-driven keywords, then you are missing huge opportunities.

Do DIY Website Builders Work For Small Business? No.

Do DIY Website Builders Work For Small Business

And Here's Why.

In the good old days, you got on the web so current customers could find you.

Because they already knew your name.

Today, prospective customers type (and increasingly speak) into their phones a search phrase that ends in "near me" (in a whopping 35% of searches).

Now you need to be seen (or heard when read back) for those searches. Because when we search today we are not tied to a monitor sitting on a desk. We are often out and about, looking for a product or service.

And the only way that you get seen now is with a focused and tactical SEO search strategy that is measurable and generates customer leads. Simply launching a new website doesn’t accomplish that goal. Today, it requires regularly developing content, monitoring key search terms that your customer prospects are using, and generating useful, relevant content to drive the right kind of traffic to your site. Once those prospects are on your site, it is important to not only give them the right content and inform them, but also provide calls-to-action that lead them to engage with you and become a viable customer.

This is where the content marketing engine comes in.

And you can't do any content marketing on a DIY Website.

Do DIY Website Builders Work For Small Business?

Back in the "Blue Link" Days, Well, Sort Of.

Back a few short years ago when these DIY sites popped up by the dozens, Google was pretty straight forward -- Paid Ads and Organic Search Returns providing a long list of blue links.

Today, you have Custom Snippets, Rich Snippets, Rich Returns, Answer Boxes, Knowledge Panels, Direct Answers, News Carousels and more, all falling under "Structured Data" that is not even remotely possible to do on a DIY site (because you can't change the data in the underlying code).

This special coding (schema coding) works for most any type of business for things like;

  • Events (Like training events, or bands at your bar, etc)
  • Products
  • People
  • Recipes (Pretty sure you see these frequently in Google)
  • Reviews
  • Local SEO (Service Areas)
  • And more
Do DIY Website Builders Work For Small Business - Not if you want to be seen

Do DIY Website Builders Work For Small Business? Not If You Want To Do This

What you see there is a small business dominating the search page (with no locality in the search phrase) through a Google pickup of a Rich Snippet coded in schema.

That's NOT an ad.

It's a Rich Snippet, coded into the site. And Rich Snippets always are the FIRST LISTING on the Search Return Page.

And that's just one example of what you can do with special coding on your website.

Do DIY Website Builders Work For Small Business?

Not if you want your pictures and videos seen...

When you finish building your own DIY website, it's sure going to look good, but those pictures and videos on your website are going to be missing the basic building blocks of SEO so Google can better understand what products and services you offer.

Image Info

  • Google looks at the "Alternate Text" coding for a description of the image - add 4-10 words here, but no more - include the keyword you would like to associate with the image.
  • Add a description to the image in the coding, but no more than a sentence.
  • Add a Caption - This appears under the image as text and is a great way to boost keyword ratio to text.
  • For multiple images on a single post, vary the filenames, Alt and Description., while continuing to embed the selected keyword or long-tail phrase for that post.
  • YOU CAN"T DO ANY OF THIS ON ANY DIY WEBSITE BUILDER

Video Info

  • Be sure to populate hidden tags in the HTML code of your video landing pages, specifically Schema.org’s microdata tags
  • Twitter Card tags and Facebook tags are also a good idea.
  • Be Sure to Add video transcriptions directly to the HTML text of each of the pages where your videos are hosted. Transcriptions give your viewers the option to “read” a video if they can’t watch and listen to it, while also providing the keyword richness a search engine needs to properly index the page in the search engine return pages (SERP).
  • BTW...CAN'T DO ANY OF THIS ON A DIY WEBSITE BUILDER EITHER

Summary - on a real website, Google will know what you do based on the meta, tags, alt, description, categories....all in the coding. On a DIY site? Not so much.

Actually not at all. 

EVERY DIY WEBSITE BUILDER PREVENTS YOU FROM ANY CUSTOM CODING.

And, Google wants you to use structured data markup because it helps their spiders and bots better determine what your site content is about. Google even maintains a Structured Data Testing Tool so you can check to see if your schema markup coding is properly implemented.

Custom coding also gives you more control of the snippet. That is the little bit of real estate that appears under the blue links in search returns. And it's a very important piece of property, because it can make or break a click to your website.

And you can't dictate the 165 characters under your listing on a DYI site. 

As a small business owner, if your Google "Footprint" is only worth a website you or your kids threw together on Wix, Web, Weebly or any other DIY site, then so be it.

Google changes, the SERP algorithm changes nearly every day. But the bottom line is search returns are not what they once were. Additionally, more searches are not only requested by voice, the return is read by voice. And in that case, the snippet is what is read.

Your Business Deserves More.

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