You might have created the best website ever, however if no one can find you online then chances are your site will never really become too popular. In order to make your website more search engine friendly there are a few tricks you need to remember when designing your content.
1. Update Pages regularly
Even if the content of your website doesn’t really change that often it might be a good idea to change things around once in a while. For instance if you have a blog you might want to add your latest posts somewhere on the site. The reason for this is that the more changes you make the more often search engines will crawl through your sites.
2. Watch out with too much Flash contents
So you are using Flash for navigation on your site, while this might look really cool search engine wise it can be really bad news since search engines have difficulties crawling through sites that use too much Flash. The good thing is that there are different ways to to make Flash objects accessible and web-crawler-friendly.
3. Don’t use generic links
One area that search engines place a great emphasis on is links. Therefore it is vital that you make sure to word your links as best as possible. For instance a web crawler won’t really understand if you have several links saying “click here” instead you should be using something more specific to describe the content, something like “click here to learn more about …”
4. Use unique page titles
Similar to the tip above it is important to use unique page titles, in other words make sure each page on your web site has a unique title attribute. The problem is that if you always use the same title for every page on your website then the search engines will acknowledge this as if every site is about the same topic, and therefore ignore it.
5. Block Pages You Don’t Want Search Engines Index
Sometimes there are pages on a site that you want to see on the front page of Google. Whatever the content of such a page is make sure not to expose it to the web crawlers. One of the best ways to avoid something being crawled and indexed is through a robots.txt file.
6. Use Content That Search Engine Spiders Can Read
One reason why many websites struggle in the Google pond is because they forget that if your site contains little content then there is little for the search engine crawler to crawl through. If for example 99% of your site consists of images then don’t expect your site to rank very high. Make sure you make the life of a search engine as easy as possible.
7. Don’t forget about images
One thing that I often see people forget about is the alt attribute of images, often these are left blank because people don’t understand just how important they are. Remember the alt attribute should be used to explain what an image is. Don’t forget that while search engine crawlers are getting smarter and smarter they still can tell that the image on your website resembles Aunt Edna.
Furthermore remember that sometimes images don’t load for some reason and therefore it is a great idea to use the alt attributes to help tell the users whats in the picture.
8. Use Unique Meta Data
This is a very important one, often designers create a template that they use for the whole website, however they forget to change the meta data and as a result they end up with several sites that all have the same meta data. In order to help search engines you should really make sure that each page has its own set of meta data.
9. Be smart about keywords
Keywords, keywords keywords….I cannot even begin to stress the importance of keywords. If you want your website to show up on google then you will really want to think long and hard about your keywords. Let’s say your website is about the best canon L lenses for the Canon 60D well if your keyword is “Canon” then be ready to fight with about 1,590,000,000 websites, whereas if you use something like “best canon L lens for 60d” then there are only 2,320,000 results, while this might still seem like a big number it sure beats the first number.
10. Remember the importance of your headings
Remember that Headline tags (h1, h2, h3, etc.) are great places to use your keywords. The biggest thing to remember is that search engines know that there is a reason behind your headline tags and therefore they will automatically add a greater importance to the words found in your headings.