4 SEO Questions to Ask Your Website Developer Before You Build a New Site

A computer sitting on a desk displays a webpage with 4 abstract colorful images

With so much changing in the world of digital marketing and search engine optimization (SEO), it’s tempting to jump right into website building or redesign when you’re ready to add new landing pages or launch a new marketing campaign.

But be careful: you don’t want a slick-looking site that isn’t optimized. That’s why you have to do your homework when hiring a website developer. Make sure they know their stuff so you don’t waste money on a site that won’t generate traffic or leads.

Start by asking these questions.

1: May I See Your Portfolio?

Asking your web developer for their portfolio gives you a lot of insight into:

  • Their style and process
  • How they place content and prioritize content elements
  • How streamlined (or busy) their typical design is

But that’s not all you can learn. You can do some detective work to find out how optimized their sites are.

Try typing some keywords from the pages in their portfolio into Google: does your developer’s work rise to the top, or is it lost somewhere on Page 5?

You also want to test every page design they share with you for page speed using Google’s Page Speed test tool. You’ll know how quickly pages load across devices. If they’re lightning fast, your website will be optimized for speed. If they’re moving at a snail’s pace, it may be time to look elsewhere.

2 Which CMS Will You Use?

Your website developer will likely have a favorite Content Management System (CMS) that they use to build or redesign websites, and integrate site content into your marketing strategy.

Research their preferred tool, or request a demo, to learn:

  • How easy it will be to add or change webpages
  • Which plugins and add-ons are (or aren’t) supported and integrated into your website
  • What tools are at your disposal for optimizing keywords, tags, images, content, and other site elements for better search engine indexing and ranking

Getting acquainted with their CMS will give you a better grasp on how your new website will help your digital marketing and content strategy.

3 Which Hosting Site Will You Use?

As with their preferred CMS, it’s good to understand the pros and cons of your web developer’s preferred hosting site. Hosting sites and plans vary when it comes to SEO readiness. The wrong hosting site can negatively impact your page speed. It may charge you for a bunch of add-ons you don’t want. Or it may not support the add-ons you actually need. It’s better to start with web hosting you’re confident investing in than to design and build an entire site, only to have to undergo the costly and time-consuming process of migrating them to new hosting due to poor performance.

4: Are Your Sites Mobile-Friendly?

Since Google launched mobile-first indexing (indexing and ranking mobile pages before desktop versions), it’s become paramount that any site or landing page you design must:

  • Load fast on mobile devices
  • Look great on a small screen
  • Have interactive features (buttons, forms, etc.) that make sense for mobile users
  • Use keywords relevant to mobile searchers

If your web developer knows how to build mobile-friendly pages, or make your existing pages mobile-responsive, you’re in good hands.

GoEpps provides website planning, development, and design services with seamless integration into digital marketing and content strategy. Drop us a line to talk about your website goals and your marketing plans.