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Who are you building your website for anyway?

At every point of the website development process it’s crucial to consider who you are building the website for.

Everybody wants to build for Google

If your building based on what google wants then you’re doing it wrong. I’m not saying google doesn’t support good web development practices because it does but the fact is google will never pay you. Google doesn’t care about the products and services you offer on a personal level, so building your website around what google wants doesn’t make any sense. Search engines actually need you, they wouldn’t be very useful if they didn’t have any search results to display when someone enters in a search, would they?

But I want people to find me on google?!

Yes, I know. However, if you build your website for google then you’ve already lost. Here’s why…

Websites are for people not robots

Websites should always be built for people. If you build for a specific audience and the problems of that audience then search engines will want to display your content that audience.

Think about it, if you have a question, search for the answer and find it where do you go the next time you have a question? Back to google. So the solution is to build your website around the people you want to serve, catering to their problems better than anyone else.

So how do you build a website for people?

If you’re asking the above question then you are setting yourself up for success. Consider what problem or problems your users have that they want to solve and how you can help them solve that problem.

Making bread

For example, if you sell bread makers then your website should focus on helping people make bread. It sounds simple and it is, you just need to spend the time thinking about the problems and solutions people want when making bread:

  • Why is my bread not rising?
  • What’s the best flour to use when making bread?
  • How do I make bread at home?

I don’t sell bread makers but I can almost guarantee that people who want to make bread ask these sorts of questions.

Just because I want to make bread doesn’t mean I can see

It’s a common mistake of people without any disability to exclude people with disabilities. You should build your website to cater for anyone who has the problem you’re trying to solve and that includes people who may have some form of impairment. Consider disability as a range maybe your user is blind or maybe your user has difficulty seeing colour. Maybe your users disability is temporary such as a mum who only has one hand because she’s carrying her child in the other.

Don’t get caught in the vanity trap

One final point I’d like to make, when you’re building your website it’s not about you, it’s about your audience, so do what your audience wants.

You might like the colour blue but your audience likes yellow and if that’s the case then your website should be yellow. Maybe that seems extreme but the point I’m trying to make is that you shouldn’t be hell bent on your own wants and needs above those of your customers and potential customers.