The Website Trap, Do You Lease or Own?


On a daily basis I am evaluating websites for search friendliness, researching effective keywords, title tags, content, lead capture and many other contributing factors to Google success. I do this for websites big and small, new and old with varying marketing budgets. My job is to create an effective personal strategy to move a website to the top of the search ranks for competitive keywords, ultimately driving traffic and generating leads. I want everyone to be successful but unfortunately I can’t help everyone and it’s not because I don’t have time (Our SEO system is scaled well and we have employed the talent to perform).

The biggest problem I see day-to-day are websites owners with little to no control of their websites.

This has happened for a couple reasons.

  • Template websites are priced right and consumers don’t necessarily know what they are buying. I’m not going to say every template website is bad, only the ones that restrict access to the website so much that even small changes are an added charge, a week delay, or impossible. For me as an owner of multiple websites myself, that is unacceptable. If there is one thing I have learned it is that Speed of Implementation is essential to success and survival in a changing Internet world.
  • Many web design companies have built a subscription based service into their revenue model. The client pays the monthly and the company evolves the platform. This can work if the design company is as enthused about change and the future as the client and they consistently evolve their services. The problem here comes when the company stops evolving and the site grows outdated while the client is stuck paying monthly. Now if the client wants to move away from the companies services (and monthly payment) their website is so entrenched, and possibly under design ownership rights of the company, that to really get away involves the client paying someone to build an entirely new site to making the switch.

TIP: Find a company that gives you FTP access to your website. It’s your own website and you deserve to have control. If a company insists that they can’t let you have FTP access, there are plenty of other companies that will.

An evolution of design and control

With new open source publishing platforms like WordPress designers can now offer clients a customized website built on a framework that allows for complete ownership and control. No more monthly maintenance fees. Open source means that community based collaboration has developed and will continue to evolve the platform, at no cost. As the web evolves, search engines evolve and design evolves the community as a whole participates in the growth for the benefit of everyone.

Here are a few examples of sites we’ve built on WordPress:

3 Responses to The Website Trap, Do You Lease or Own?

  1. Peter Murphy

    June 3, 2010

    I have an IDX based website provided by my MLS provider. How can I optimize this site for search engine placement?


  2. Gabe Hoggarth

    June 17, 2010

    Hi Peter, you can first take a look at the title of your site and make sure Google has a good idea what keywords to rank your site. If you’re unsure about keywords take a look at your competitors and use the Google search-based keyword tool

    Depending on how much control you have of the site the next step is to add unique, local, real estate content and check that Google is properly finding and indexing the site.

    The next goal is to make sure Google finds your site as an authoritative site. I say goal because it is a long-term process. Google looks at a lot of factors to determine authority and values inbound links as votes of confidence. Your site will benefit from links from social media sites, local businesses and other real estate sites.

  3. melisawilson09

    December 9, 2010

    Hi Dear! Thanks for creating a blog sites , I like this
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