We’ve just launched a new website for Born Again Pews, a company in Oklahoma that builds pews, pulpits, and related furniture for churches.
You can see the new site at left and the old site below.
The new site is certainly more attractive, but that’s not the only change. The site owner contacted us originally because — in spite of some hard work over many months — they weren’t showing up in search engine results.
The company’s business is conducted almost entirely online. Most churches buy pews very rarely (maybe once in a century) so the opportunities for long-term customer relationships are limited. The company is in a small town, but they build pews for churches all over the country, load them up, and install them. Local advertising and even word of mouth are of limited value in their situation. Certainly, the website is very important to them.
When we had a look at their old website, we saw some indications that someone had tried out some old SEO methods that are no longer appropriate. For example, numerous keywords were bunched together in faint type in the footer:”Church Furniture, Church Pews, Church Pews For Sale, Oak Church Pews, Padded Church Pews and Wood Church Pews at affordable prices. Browse our selection of Church Pew, Church Pew For Sale, Oak Church Pew, Padded Church Pew, Pulpit Furniture and Wood Church Pew products.” Nowadays, this kind of content is considered “keyword stuffing” — an intentional attempt to game the system. (Read more about why that was done long ago and why it isn’t useful now in “Search Engines 101.”)
On the other hand, there were many internal pages that had almost no words at all — just pictures, and those without alt text or thoughtful titles. For example, a picture would be titled “iqvif-skebp-glvht-photo_2_(5)_thumb.jpg” when it could more usefully have been titled “oak-church-pew.”
We built a new website with plenty of keyword-rich content, an updated design, modern code, and more attractive galleries. We built it on a WordPress platform so the owner can easily update everything. These changes are not directly related to SEO — except that they are likely to gain better links for the website — but they are important for conversion.
The new site loads faster and will probably be more appealing to visitors. The additional content will help the site communicate better with search engines, instead of looking as though they’re trying to use tricks to rank. The new WordPress blog will be easier to keep current, too, so that the owners will have a better chance of gaining the SEO benefits of regular blogging. Social media is not currently part of the company’s online marketing strategy, but we built the site to accommodate social media integration without design changes in future. All of these changes will help make the site much more findable, as well as more appealing to their visitors.
Does your company website need a makeover? Call 479.966.9761 and talk with Julianne about your needs, or contact us via email. We’d love to work with you.