Etna Interactive
709 Fiero Lane, Suite 43
/ San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Tel (866) 374-3762
Fax (805) 543-2014

Why Do Ugly Sites Sometimes Rank Better Than Pretty Sites?

I had my site built by another company, and it is really attractive. But there are all these ugly sites ranking ahead of me in the search engines. Why do the ugly sites get better rankings than my nice site?

You have to remember that search engines are really text engines. Search engines cannot see your attractive design, your integrated video or your custom animations. In many cases those things can actually confound search engines and make it harder for them to access the text, or the context, of your site.

While search engines don’t favor ugly sites, they do favor sites that have clean coding behind the scenes. They also favor sites with well written, informative text.

So while I haven’t had the chance to review your site, I can probably guess that either, (a) your web designer made a site that is pretty on the front end but used “ugly” coding techniques, (b) you used too much graphic and multimedia content and not enough text, (c) your links are not easy for search engines to follow, or (d) all of the above.

Unfortunately, these are pretty common problems. Fortunately, they are fairly easy to fix. Etna Interactive routinely performs website coding makeovers that transform sites (attractive or not) into a search-engine-friendly format without radically changing the appearance of the site’s front end.

If your site looks good but isn’t being found, give us a call at 866-374-3762 or click to contact us.


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One Response to Why Do Ugly Sites Sometimes Rank Better Than Pretty Sites?

  • Kevin McGinn says:

    As the Web Development Manager at Etna, I make sure to train every new developer on clean and effective code. Even the placement of the code (higher or lower on the page) makes a difference to search engines and we take a lot of pride on focusing on that without it changing the style of the page at all.

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