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Search Engine Optimization has always been host, Charles’ achilles heal when it comes to websites. Back in episode 13 of Tech Demand Weekly, Myles Winstone spoke about how you can make sure your audience can find your content and how to start an effective SEO campaign.

On this episode Charles is joined by Jeff White, the co-founder of Kula Partners, to discuss website optimization. Making your website accessible to all is more important than ever. Not only for getting as many leads through your funnel but for not landing yourself in legal hot water.

“There was a woman last fall who sued Beyoncé because she was unable to buy a sweatshirt on her site. Her website wasn’t accessible.”

Website Optimization

Websites have moved on a lot since Jeff first got into the business of making them. At the same time though they’ve stayed the same. Companies like Squarespace and WordPress may have removed the need for people to learn how to code. The browser wars of the early 90’s (anyone remember Netscape?) may be over. The web standards movement founded by Jeffrey Zeldman and other prominent designers was only the beginning.

“The tools and technology for building sites have become pretty advanced and they’re pretty readily available and I think that’s both good and bad.”

WordPress is the most popular template based website builder, powering an enormous amount of the websites available on the internet. Part of the problem is that sites like WordPress include templates. These are largely free and built to accommodate any need. Because of that they all look the same. They also include widgets that aren’t  necessarily required. This takes up a huge amount of bandwidth that slows the site down, another issue.

Jeff doesn’t say that websites based on free templates are bad though. And he certainly doesn’t say they are not to be touched. It is more that having an understanding of how websites work is more important than ever. Knowing what makes them tick and what features you need for it to stand out is a must.


“In North America it is a 1 in 5 chance that someone is going to have some form of disability.”

There are a whole set of rules around accessibility guidelines for websites called WCAG which cover aspects like contrast, alternative descriptions and keyboard navigation. Essentially all the things that make a website easy to use for everyone. Website optimization doesn’t have to be technical, just think of it in the same way as you would a building.

“Not having a website that is accessible to a blind user is exactly the same as not having a retail business that is accessible to someone in a wheelchair.”

Beyoncé Lawsuit

At the start of 2019, The Guardian newspaper reported that a class action lawsuit had been filed as Beyoncé’s official website violates the Americans With Disabilities Act (1990) by denying visually impaired users equal access to its products and services. Essentially the website didn’t include any alt-text on it’s images that would allow a blind user to have the same vision of the site as a person with sight.

Knowing and understanding your audience should be the number one concern.

Knowing their thoughts and concerns are the only way that you can create a website that gives your buyers a simple  journey. This may take time. As a company will no doubt have many different customer personas. Starting off by understanding your audience though will help you to begin to have a fully accessible website.

“The CEO [will say] I don’t like it… it’s not about you Sir, it’s about the people who are buying the things that you make…”


Remember that having a website is an important tool in any marketing campaign. It is the place you send your prospects. It must be visually appealing and showcase your services perfectly. Website optimization is even more important. You need as many people to be able to access it as possible. Having a website that is not accessible to all limits your businesses potential. What would having a lawsuit filed against you do to your lead campaign?


Jeff White is the co-founder of Kula Partners, an agency designed to help leading manufacturers digitally transform their marketing and sales.

You can listen to the episode in full on your favourite podcast app or by clicking any of the links below.

Apple Podcasts | Google PodcastsSpotify | Stitcher | Audioboom

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