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Winner - December 2010 at

Web Design
Web Presence
CIO Services

First Impression: Military Support - Afghanistan

The main page

The site follows the latest convention of graphics rather than large amounts of text.  The large top image is actually a rotation of three images allowing visitors a quick view into three offerings of Move One.  Because motion attracts the visitor’s eyes and the image size is dramatic, the rotating image with three additional images below it can cause a first time visitor to think this is just an advertising web site and disregard it. 

While we understand the intention, the map, large "Afghanistan" and "Military" caused the first impression.  The main page does not say what you do unless a visitor scrolls down to see the “services”.  Placing  the “Truly Global” text and image from the "About Us" page would make a better first impression.

The Details: Tidy 32 page web site

Erika's Attic - hidden inside it damages reputation
Blog - very nice but it should be in a different place

After looking at the site map, it appears that this web site has about 32 pages.  Surprisingly, hidden inside is an extensive collection of multiple websites encompassing almost 5,000 pages.  The primary business of Move One is immigration and international relocation, working with individuals, families, art and pets but they also have an extensive library of video city guides and there are hundreds (thousands?) of ads posted in the goods for sale, lost and found and a box exchange section called Erika's Attic.

Imagine the scoring by the Google when it evaluates a site about on international relocation, then finds children’s clothes for sale, bicycles, used cars and a house for rent.  Google will demote the site as not relevant because of the unrelated variety of content.

There is a section of newsletters and several blogs. There are at least 9 different ‘areas’ to the site and some of these have pages that ‘trap’ the less sophisticated visitor with a “home” button that only goes to the section home, not back to the main website.  While all of these sub sites are related to the business, having everything together in one URL causes search engine confusion.

Expat Echo - also nicely done but it should not be hidden inside the site

“Keywords” are specially identified words included in the code for each page, unseen by the visitor that helps to identify the purpose and categories of the content.  This website does a nice job of giving each page different keywords, depending on the page contents, but the keywords should be stronger and better matched to content.  The keywords for the main page reveals included words that seem to have little to do with the business and is missing words that will make this site stand out.  Do not include words like “data centre”, “saas” and “cloud computing” that have nothing to do with this site. 

Spelling: The site suffers a big credibility loss due to bad spelling.  Search engines use spelling as one way to validate “good information”.   92.8% of the pages have at least one spelling error ranging from “Facebok”, to “Buadpest” and “Businss”.  Of course, with people posting their own ads in the Erika’s Attic, and visitor comments on the blogs, you’re bound to see poor abbreviation or misspellings.  These detract from the site quality, and ultimately hurt your credibility.

Analytics: You already use Google Analytics, which is very good, but are you using the data to fine tune your pages?  What is your goal when someone visits your site?  How do you attempt to drive a visitor to that goal?

Our recommendation:

City Guides is an award winning effort by Move One - it should stand on it's own which should raise rankings

In our opinion, the most important first step is to move everything that is not related to the core business website. This includes the blogs, the city guides, videos, Erika’s Attic, and everything else that is not part of the core website.

Erika’s Attic: There are several choices on how to accomplish this, but the important thing is to remove it as this one hurts your ratings a lot.  You can link them together.  All links to your sites are valuable, even if it’s from other sites you own. Google looks for credibility, and links from other sites are one way to build that.

City Guides: The videos are very nicely done and are on both YouTube and Vimeo.  Well done!  See the great holiday video too!  The videos should have the url added into the video introduction and ending because the ones we watched do not have it, only “Move One”.  The city guide website is very well done and should be given the chance to stand out. The awards you’ve won should be a step towards greater visibility.

Blogs: The Blogs could be done several ways, including a different url, a subdomain, or our preference setup on servers. Google seems to find and index the updates quickly and indexes it. You also eliminate the need to upgrade various copies of WordPress every time a new release is out. You can still use your templates.

Core Web Site: Finally, and this one might be challenged by some people, but we would not use WordPress for your primary website. In our opinion WordPress is a great blog tool, but a blog tool does not make a good website. We’ve seen it done by many people, but our opinion is always the same. It isn’t effective for the results you want. You’ve done a great job of layout that completely masks any resemblance to a blog, but it’s still a blog.

You need more pages specifically targeted at individual countries and cities to get yourself ‘found’ in Google. Use a keyword centric design strategy then create the content. Over 80% of all searches in the world are done on Google. You MUST be there to be successful online.

We suggest your page include a way to select  “RELO: from and to” that would take a visitor to relevant information on the specific country to demonstrate your value and expertise. Google might find that valuable too and you could start showing up when someone searches for relocation info.  

Value and competence are critical for a web site to rank high.

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