Why Doing SEO is Pointless if Your Website Needs Work

We very often have clients come to us for SEO, and when we look at their website we see that it is rife with problems both relating to design and relating to SEO. We typically inform the client that they need a new website, and all too often we hear something along the lines of:

“I want to hire you for SEO, not for design – we like the site we have!”

Lets try to explain why you do need to work on your site first. Your website is actually the foundation for any SEO or marketing you do. I you have a bad site – poor design, bad user experience, spam, etc – then it is going to perform poorly no matter what arena you put it into whether it is working on conversion, or an AdWords campaign, or organic SEO work. The base page, before any marketing is done to it, needs to be set up correctly in order to capture those marketing efforts. The same goes for SEO- if we have a page that has really bad design, layout, and on-page factors- we can do SEO until our noses bleed and Google gets replaced by a new search engine and it is not going to be nearly as effective as fixing the site before hand.

Lets put some figures on it:

Site A

Site A has a really poor layout and no call to action on the home page. We do some SEO and get this page to #3 in Google, but the page only converts at 1% due to poor design. Remember that the #3 spot in search engine results only sees roughly 12% of search traffic compared to 33% for #1. The main search term gets 200 searches per month, so since you are in #3 you get 24 visits per month. At a 1% conversion rate, your looking at one customer every 4 months. While this may sound great to you as a business owner (it probably doesn’t), lets look at the other scenario:

Site B

Site B has a better layout, really great on-page and an actionable CTA that converts well. We do some SEO and due to the good on-page and mobile capable design, this page is ranked #1 and converts at 4%. Since it is #1, it gets 33% of 200 visits per month and sees 66 visitors per month. With a four percent conversion rating, this business would be getting 2-3 new customers every month.

Which site would you rather have, one this gives you one customer every 4 months or one that gives you 2-3 customers every month? When you factor in the value of a customer to your business, fixing your site first quickly becomes something that you can put a ROI on. These figures used above are just examples, but they are very real examples of numbers a small business website might see. And the difference between rank #1 and rank #3 can very easily be only some on-page adjustments and refinements.



Virginia SEO can “do SEO” for any site, good or bad. BUT, our effectiveness is reduced if we are working on marketing a bad site- and that is wasting money. Also, a part of our Inbound strategy is to help a business owner present their business in the best way possible, and this creaps outside of the bounds of pure SEO. this includes marketing (inbound and outbound), and also design. What sort of SEO company would we be if we only did SEO and did not advise our clients on the synergistic things that go hand in hand with SEO such as marketing, conversion optimization, and web design?

Whether you have an amazing site or a bad one, mobile optimized or not, we would like to help. Give us a call and we will perform a great analysis of not only your website but of your business and entire online presence. Our SEO involves not only on-page or off-page, but an entire gamut of factors that all relate to one another:

  • on-page
  • off-page (incoming links)
  • online reputation
  • local search
  • design
  • brand identification
  • conversion
  • pay-per-click
  • competitive analysis and strategy
  • content strategy
  • social media presence, signals, and strategy

The list goes on.

Reference – No. 1 Position in Google…

Chris Dill

SEO Expert at Virginia SEO
Chris loves web design, marketing, and anything on a computer. Chris just finished his MSIS and is a network engineer.
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