hajnasiewicz

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Not sure where to ask this, and if in appropriate here please advise and I will remove. I wonder if businesses who contract with Agencies for Web Development services should expect the agency to meet SEO fundamentals (alt tags on images, meta titles/descriptions), execute on current web standards (H1-H3 for hierarchy, not cosmetic), and/or comply with basic accessibility guidelines (which often are a direct tie into SEO basics/web standards)? Are these usually included in an agency contract or are they typically additional services? Thank you.
 

Tim Colling

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Rather than assume anything, make sure that your contract requires the web dev firm to do whatever you want them to do... and that's where things become tricky, right?

Because what you believe to constitute "standards" in those regards might not always be what a different entity would consider to be "standards". Perhaps that's not so much try with respect to a11y, where there ARE standards, but with respect to SEO, it's not so clear.
 

hajnasiewicz

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Thank you Tim, you make very good points! I appreciate you taking the time to answer my question.
 

JoyHawkins

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I always advise using a web developer that also does SEO.
 

Yan Gilbert

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Even if a web designer does include some SEO as part of their service, many times it is not optimally done because they don't necessarily specialize in that area. Elements like a Title tag can be quickly added, but may have to be rewritten after performing keyword research for example.

What annoys me like crazy is when I look at a site and there is not even an H1 on the page, or that for some reason the H3 is a larger font than the H2.

But as to the specific in your question - execute on current web standards (H1-H3 for hierarchy, not cosmetic), and/or comply with basic accessibility guidelines (which often are a direct tie into SEO basics/web standards - I think should be part of basic design. Title tags and Meta descriptions is just another form of content and not part of the 'design'.
 

CraigJMount

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I love this question.

I agree w/ Tim's sentiment--there are no universal standards for SEO. That said it's probably easier to utilize SEO services as additional and separate. I stongly believe SEO should be consulted prior to development beginning.

To Yan's point, I agree there is a threshold of expectation that's reasonable: speed, structure, mobile-friendly, etc.

However, I wouldn't say it's fair to a developer to expect anything past the reasonable threshold w/o an SEO consult prior.
 

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