Websites that don't help your marketing!
So you have a website, you have a presence on the World Wide Web, but how well is it performing? Is it bringing in business to you, or just sitting there with a few visitors per month? Try the tests suggested in the right hand panel. If your website is underperforming then investing in a new one will be worth the money.
Things to look for on your website
Many people think that having a .com sounds cool, but if you are mainly looking for business locally then go for a .co.uk domain. Otherwise you will be competing against similar businesses worldwide! Frequently, UK based businesses with a .com domain name do not get listed in Google in the surfer ticks the "Pages from the UK" check box!
If the .co.uk name you want is already taken there will be many similar alternatives to choose from:
If you have both .com and .co.uk versions make sure that your site is hosted under the .co.uk. version and the other points to that rather then the reverse. Test this by typing in both names in turn, and watching to see what the address bar changes to when you land on the home page.
When you type your domain name www.mybusiness.co.uk into the address bar, does it change to something completely different?
Click Here to Enter!
Google considers the page which visitors usually land on first - your index page or 'home' page - as the most important one; so is usually ranked higher than the other pages on your site. However if your site has a welcome page or 'splash page' displaying just your logo and the words 'Click Here to Enter', then it has no information about your products or services for the Search Engines to index!
Likewise; something else to avoid is buying into a 'web design service' who place your website as a sub-domain of theirs. Your website might appear as 'www.mybusiness.big-directory.co.uk'. The actual domain is 'big-directory.co.uk' and you will be a sub-domain of that. Google regards the whole domain as one site, and will only list a maximum of two pages from the site. So you may be pushed out by rivals using the same service!
You've been framed!
It is (usually*) easy to tell if a site is using frames. The main part of the page has a scroll bar at the side, allowing you to move that whilst the masthead and havigation buttons remain fixed in place. Using frames in web sites might be thought of a neat idea. However the main web page (index) merely contains a short list of instructions about where the frames go and what they contain. Some search engines may find it dificult to drill down to the actual web pages and find the information.
*A site may still be framed if there is not much text to need scroll bars. Click on the 'View' menu in your browser and look at the 'source' or 'page source' this will pop up in another window. If there are only about half a dozen lines and these include the word 'frameset' then the site is framed.