Categories: On Page Optimization

On-page optimization

by Rayz
Published on: January 29, 2009
Categories: On Page Optimization
Tags: No Tags
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In SEO, on-page optimization refers to factors that have an effect on your website or web page listings in natural search engine results. These factors are controlled by the design, content and coding on your page. Examples of on-page optimization include HTML code, Meta tags, keyword placement and keyword density.

Content Optimization

Keeping search spiders and your users feel comfortable with the textual content on your web pages is a tedious task. Search Engines would highly rank pages that repeat the search keywords, provided they maintain the right keyword density. At the same time you need to keep in mind the comfort level of your users who visit those pages. Overly repeating the same keywords and compromising on user readability might seriously affect the user experience on your website. Hire content writers who can maintain a proper balance in the articles that you put up on your website.

Title Tag title>Hello! Am here…/title

Proper titles for each webpage, that describes what the page is intended for has always helped search spiders to better index your web pages. The rest of the content and the page URL should also be inline with the subject of your webpage. The initial few words in the title should be the specific keyword that you need to optimize for that page since the beginning words gets better weightage while indexing.

Meta tags

Meta tags refer to tags in the Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) that describes the contents of a Web page. Meta tags have been known to be used by search engines to index a webpage. Meta tags if properly selected and used with the web pages can help make the page rank higher in search results.

The following are the widely used Meta tags:

Alt tags

The HTML ‘Alt’ tags represent alternative text when a non text element typically images, cannot be displayed.

For some reason, if an image on your webpage doesn’t show up, the alt tag text would get displayed to the users.

The alt attribute needs to accurately describe the non text element, its context and purpose, this help the user as well as SEO.

Keywords

Keywords tags are not of high importance while being considered by search engines while ranking a web page. However we still need to keep them to not lose in the competition.

Keywords list should always be brief but at the same time cover all relevant areas being discussed in the page. The keywords that are more relevant to a page needs to be placed at the beginning of the list, so they get due weightage. You may keep ten to fifteen keywords per page separated by commas.

Description

Every page of your website needs its own unique description that distinguishes it from the rest of your pages.

Keep the site updated

Search spiders frequently index websites that always update their content. Spiders like to feed on fresh articles so make sure you keep your site lively with new and revised content.

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URL Rewriting

by Rayz
Published on: January 29, 2009
Categories: On Page Optimization
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If your domain URL contains characters such as: £ % $ & = etc then search engines would find it difficult to read them. As these characters are ‘dynamic’ in nature and are actually commands in their own right and if you include them in the URL it confuses search spiders.

In the past, websites normally used to have less than a hundred pages, since they were not much used for ecommerce. However as business over the internet grew, every shopping portal had to manage thousands of products. The easier and better manageable methodology was to keep all of the products in a database and use a webpage template and dynamically load products into it as and when a user request is encountered.

This approach leads to the usage of URLs to pass product/customer specific information to ensure the user is navigated to the appropriate product information.

A typical dynamic URL would look like this:

http://www.mysamplewebsite.com/Mountings.aspx?req=268&c=4565d-d59

Technically it helps a webmaster to manage the web pages easily, however for search engine spiders this has proved to be a tedious task, since they are unsure as to how to navigate using dynamics, hence skip most of such pages.

Ideally, the entire URL needs to be readable and meaningful to a human eye. That by itself would ensure readability to search engines, and they know what the URL has in stock for the user.

I would suggest keeping URLs similar to what you see below:

http://www .mysamplewebsite.com/article/myarticle1

http://www .mysamplewebsite.com/submission

http://www .mysamplewebsite.com/product1

http://www .mysamplewebsite.com/product2

It’s a known fact that search engine friendly static URLs are indexed more effectively than complicated database-driven dynamic URLs.

Yet another difficulty in using dynamic URLs is while sharing links of specific product pages to contacts and during link building. The URLs become un-manageable and stand a high chance of resulting in broken links.

Having all this said, how can a webmaster manage to still keep all his products showcased on the websites while maintaining clean URLs?

That’s where URL Rewriting comes into picture!

There are tools available which can be used by a website developer, with which the dynamic URLs when requested for can be masked with static ones while displaying the web page. That means in the background all the query parameters can still be passed, whereas the URL presented would show a clean static one.

So a URL like this,

http://www .mysamplewebsite.com/Mountings.aspx?req=a178&cc=4523e65d-ba8e-1644539c79bf

after undergoing the URL Rewriting process would reach a Search spider / Web user as,

http://www .mysamplewebsite.com/product1

Now days every dynamic websites are busy getting their URL’s converted with Rewriting tools to ensure better visibility on search engines.

Though many search engines now claim that there search spiders have now overcome the difficulty in parsing dynamic URLs, I still know a lot of websites that use dynamic URLs and gets less than 300 of their web pages visible to Google; in reality they contain at least 4000 product pages!

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Robots-dot-Txt

by Rayz
Published on: January 29, 2009
Categories: On Page Optimization
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Robots.txt is a file kept in the root of every website and is used to instruct a search engine spider as to which web pages of your website should be indexed and which web pages should be ignored.

The Robots file is built with specific commands that a spider will look for, that lays down directions for the crawler.

Let’s analyze what is contained in a robots.txt file:

• User-agent
• Disallow
• Wildcards “/” or “*”

User-agent: Refers to any search engine spider.

For eg:
User-agent: googlebot , allows only Google to spider the website

User-agent: *, allows every search engine’s spiders to crawl the website.

Disallow: Used to specify folders or files which a spider is not allowed to crawl.

For eg:
Disallow: /, specifies that none of the files in the website should be crawled.

Disallow: /images/, specifies that any file within the folder ‘images’ should not be crawled. A few command sets that could be useful for a webmaster while creating Robots.txt is given below: Allow all search engine spiders to index all files

User-agent: *
Disallow: Allow only Google’s search engine spiders to index the website

User-agent: googlebot
Disallow: To ignore all files in a specific directory

User-agent: *
Disallow: /images/ To ignore only a specific file

User-agent: *
Disallow: /images/sample.jpg

If you don’t want any search engines to index any files on your website, use the following:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /

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