Under the bonnet: aesthetics v functionality

By Liniar’s Simone Sangha.

When looking at a website, people often judge it purely based on how it looks.

Of course, appearance is an extremely important component of a website. However, don’t be caught out. Just because a site may look aesthetically pleasing, it doesn’t automatically mean that it works well to carry out its prime objective: to drive leads for the business.

This article focuses on looking under the bonnet of a website, helping you to see beyond an eye-catching design and highlighting the factors to look out for when investing in a new website.

As most digital marketers will be aware, 80% of website management is done behind the scenes and, therefore, exploring the health of a site is crucial to a fastidious online strategy.

A website that looks good and works well is vital but if your potential customers aren’t seeing it on Google, then you’ll be missing out on a pretty huge trick!

What’s typically called the back-end of your website is, in essence, the engine that drives it. Most of this can’t be viewed by the public. However, this is the part that Google essentially reads when ranking your website. It consists of a lot of coding, stylesheets and page templates, as well as metadata such as page titles and descriptions, usually handled by a CMS (content management system).

This doesn’t have to be complicated and should be managed regularly. I would recommend using plugins such as Yoast, to make page updates easy. Plugins like this can let you add metadata in a much more efficient way.

I’ve seen many websites that look wonderful from a user point of view but aren’t ranking highly enough due to issues such as little or no metadata, poor site speed, or not being mobile-friendly, among others.

To find out how yours performs, I’d recommend having a technical site audit carried out to highlight any gaps with the parts you don’t physically see. At Liniar, we offer free technical web audits to provide clarity and recommendations for our customers. This helps them really understand how their site is performing and I would advise businesses in any industry to get a health check or audit done at least once a year.

Bonus tip. Lots of images on your landing pages may look great, but too many high-resolution images and/or videos can slow down your website. Poor site speed can not only affect user experience as most will get bored and go elsewhere (affecting bounce rate), but it’s also a ranking factor from Google.

Check your site speed online at