Thursday, December 28, 2006

SEO META TAGS

META Tags - Metadata Elements

META Tags or what are officially referred to as Metadata Elements, are found within the [head][/head] section of your web pages. Meta tags are still relevant with some indexing search engines. You should utilize your meta tags in accordance with the W3C - World Wide Web Consortium Metadata Specifications.

The following is a partial list of metadata elements that may be used in the overall site structuring, organization, and search engine marketing strategy.

We've provided HTML Comments (look for this ) in the source code to help you understand the metadata elements referenced in this series of topics.

Title Element - Page Titles

Every html document must have a Title Element in the head section. Some refer to the [title] element as a meta tag (title tag) when it is not.

[title]META Tags - Metadata Elements[/title]

To see an example of where the title element is placed in the html, view the source code of this web page. Look at the very top of the page right after the opening [head] tag.

META Description Tag

Some search engines will index the META Description Tag found in the [head][/head] section of your web pages. These indexing search engines may present the content of your meta description tag as the result of a search query.

[meta name="description" content="META Tags or what are officially referred to as Metadata Elements are found within the [head][/head] section of your web pages. The following is a partial list of metadata elements that may be used in the overall site structuring, organization, and search engine marketing strategy."]

META Keywords Tag

The META Keywords Tag is where you list keywords and keyword phrases that you've targeted for that specific page. There have been numerous discussions at various search engine marketing forums surrounding the use of the keywords tag and its effectiveness. The overall consensus is that the tag has little to no relevance with the major search engines today.

[meta name="keywords" content="metadata elements meta tags description tag keywords language link relationship title element"]

META Language Tag

In HTML elements, the language attribute or META Language Tag specifies the natural language. This document is mostly concerned with how to specify the primary language(s) (there could be more than one) and the base language (there is only one) in HTML documents.

[meta http-equiv="content-language" content="da"]

META Link Relationship Tag

It is helpful for search results to reference the beginning of the collection of documents in addition to the page hit by the search. You may help search engines by using the link element with rel="start" along with the title attribute. The META Link Relationship tag is part of the metadata that appears within the [head][/head] section of your web pages.

[link rel="start" href="http://www.seoconsultants.com/meta-tags/" title="META Tags - Metadata Elements"]

META Robots Tag

The Robots META Tag is meant to provide users who cannot upload or control the /robots.txt file at their websites, with a last chance to keep their content out of search engine indexes and services.

[meta name="robots" content="none"]

META Robots Tag for Googlebot

Googlebot obeys the noindex, nofollow, and noarchive META Robots Tags. If you place these tags in the head of your HTML/XHTML document, you can cause Google to not index, not follow, and/or not archive particular documents on your site.

[meta name="googlebot" content="noarchive, nofollow"]

META Robots Tag for MSNBot

MSNBot obeys the noindex and nofollow Robots META Tag. Placing these tags in the heading of your HTML document prevents MSNBot from indexing or following specific documents.

[meta name="msnbot" content="noindex, nofollow"]

META Tags Abuse and Misuse - Metadata Structuring and Standards
This is a search engine marketing article published by our System Admin (Edward Lewis) that discusses the use of HTML Comments Tags and proprietary metadata elements.

META Revisit-After Tag

The revisit-after META tag is not supported by any major search engines, it never was supported and probably never will be. It was developed for, and supported by, Vancouver Webpages and their local search engine searchBC.

[meta name="revisit-after" content="7 days"]

HTML Comments Tag

HTML comments are not metadata but, are typically found in the [head][/head] section of web pages. HTML comments can be utilized anywhere within your documents HTML structure.



There has been a myth that has perpetuated over the years where keywords and keyword phrases listed inside HTML comments tags would add a boost to the overall relevancy of the page. This is not true based on numerous tests which have been performed.

DC Dublin Core META Tags - DCMI Dublin Core Metadata Initiative

The Dublin Core metadata element set is a standard for cross domain information resource description.

[meta name="DC.title" lang="en" content="DC Dublin Core META Tags - DCMI Dublin Core Metadata Initiative"]

Glossary - internet marketing, promotion terms, SEO definition

"The search engine friendly website makes money. How to optimize website to be in 10 positions in google search engine?"

What is SEO? - Means of SEO:
Search engine optimization (SEO) or search engine optimisation (SEO) is a process of optimizing a site for getting page rank in (search engines) google, yahoo, altavista, msn, etc.

Search engine optimizer (SEO) - a company or an expert, consultant, specialist ( SEO guru ) that will help optimize your site so it will rank better in search engine results.
SEO = Search engine optimization (Lang="En-US")
SEO = Search engine optimisation (Lang="En-UK")
SEO = Ottimizzazione per motori di ricerca (Lang="it")
SEO = Suchmaschinen-optimierung (Lang="de")
SEO = Keresõoptimalizálás (Lang="hu")
What is SEM?
SEM = Search engine marketing (Lang="en")
SEM = acronimo di Search Engine Marketing (Lang="it")
SEM = Suchmaschinen marketing (Lang="de")
SEM = Keresõmarketing (Lang="hu")
What is SEP?
SEP = Search Engine Positioning (Lang="en")
SEP = Posizionamento sui motori di ricerca (Lang="it")
SEP = Keresõpozicionálás (Lang="hu")

What is SERP?
SERP = Search Engine Result Page (Lang="en")
SERP = La pagina con i risultati di una ricerca, mostrata da un motore di ricerca (Lang="it")
SERP = Keresõ találati lista (Lang="hu")

What is SES?
SES = Search Engine Strategy (Lang="en")
SES = Strategia per un posizionamento ottimale nei motori di ricerca (Lang="it")
SES = Keresõ optimalizálási stratégia (Lang="hu")

Keyword Research (Keyphreases research)
Keyword Phrase Research is a process of selecting the most "optimum performance" keyword phrases that can help visitors find your site.


Target of SEO / SEM - Objectiv
to create a SE friendly web site,
to increase site traffic,
to attract targeted visitors (potencial customers, clients)
to have ranking higher than competitors



SEO principles
All of Principle that must be respected to creat SEO designed web site. One of the most important SEO principle is the page-rank in google search engine.


SEO jobs
Search engine optimization jobs - Job for
SEO expert
SEO consultant
SEO specialist
SEO guru

The Ten Minute Optimization - A SEO Tips White Paper

1) INTRODUCTION

Many small businesses simply do not have the resources to hire a search engine optimization (SEO) company to promote their web site. There are countless resources online for do-it-yourself (DIY) optimizers where professional SEO's offer general recommendations and advice. This article is my opportunity to offer more of my SEO experience in the form of a 10-minute optimization process.

This process will be effective for any page designed in HTML with at least 1 paragraph of html text but for the purposes of this article, I will concentrate on the all-important home page.

2) Setting the Stage

Before I begin, there are a few things that you must know before proceeding and you should spend more than 10 minutes considering:

2.A) Determine Your Target(s)

99% of you know who your target market is, now you need to choose the keywords that you believe they will search for. There is no use obtaining top search engine placements under terms that are not being searched. This step, alone, requires extensive explanation but there are a few simple tips to keep in mind. For one, you will want to check your current traffic statistics and note what traffic you are already receiving and under what keywords. Now, visit the site of a competitor who you know is doing well online (through either conversation or news articles). Look at their titles on individual pages and try to determine a pattern in the keywords that they have chosen. Also look at the source of their pages (Internet Explorer: click "View" then "Source") and copy their META tags into a notepad on your computer. Between the titles and the META tags you should be able to determine with reasonable accuracy which keywords are most important for rankings.

It is important to note that professional SEO's have many more resources at hand to determine such information with higher accuracy.

2.B) Design - Is Your Page Marketable?

This topic can be touchy to bring up but the simple fact is that traffic will have less impact if your web page is unmarketable. Now this covers a lot of different aspects of design, however, a few basic rules should be followed.

i) Avoid using strange color combinations that make it hard for a viewer to read your sales copy (red text on a blue background is a perfect example of a painful design). In the same respect it is important not to use text that is too small; try to keep your font size to a minimum of size 10 or 12 (2 or 3 in Dreamweaver).

i) Unrelated advertisements on your web site provide distractions to your viewers. If you are selling BMW's then it is generally not a good idea to show an advertisement for herbal Viagra.

Every single graphical element of your home page has the potential to add or deny credibility. Using this space wisely will ultimately create happier visitors and generate more profit.

2.C) Spot Check for Relevancy

It is very important for your site to be focused. For example, if your web site is supposed to be devoted to 'BMW car sales' then a page or information on real estate sales is entirely unnecessary. Keep in mind that most of the top search engines will rank your site depending upon the topic they determine you are offering. This determination is largely made based upon the text within your web site. Don't give them any reason to get 'confused'.

3) THE TEN MINUTE PROCESS

Spot Check for Spam

Before optimization begins it is crucial that your page is devoid of any 'tricks' that a search engine may construe as spam. You may not even know they are there! Some web designers with out-of-date information add hidden text because they think it will help your rankings. This is entirely untrue and can cause extreme problems for your search engine visibility. To check for hidden text just hold down the left button on your mouse at the very top of your page and drag it down to the bottom. If there is any hidden text (normally text that matches the color of your page background) it will appear as it is highlighted. Second, you will want to search for unnecessary repetition of keywords on your page. Do you see instances of 5 or 6 keywords being repeated in a row anywhere on the page? If so, remove this.

Polish & Optimize Text

The text on your home page is crucial to maintaining the attention of fresh viewers. In fact, copy is so important that many companies prefer to have a professional copy writer create the content. Since this is not an option for many, you have to keep your text engaging as well as smartly optimized to present an obvious topic to the visiting search engine spiders or visitors. To do this, keep your mind focused on the keyword(s) that you have chosen to target on the search engines while you write the content for the page. Implement the keywords within the text without sacrificing the true intent of the information - to engage and retain your viewers.

Important Note: Often the first 25-30 words of your home page are what each search engine will use for the description of your web site. Try to utilize your target keyword(s) within this area but be certain the resulting sentence is legible and descriptive.

Optimize the Title

The title of the home page can be optimized quite simply by placing the keyword or keyword phrase that you have chosen to target first and then finish with the name of your company or web site. For example:

" BMW Car Sales - MyBMW.com"

The search engines place a great deal of weight in the title of your home page and the keywords within your title will likely be chosen as the title of your listing on the search engines. The title also plays a huge role in the relevance of your site. The topic denoted within your title will be compared to the content within the body of the page, if the topic and content match, you will have a much better chance of obtaining higher targeted placements.


META Tags

The META tags located within the invisible source of your web page. They were originally designed to provide the details of your web site to visiting search engine spiders and they still do, to a degree. Since this part of your web page is invisible, META tags were increasingly used to misinform the search engines of the content of a web site - spamming. As a result, META tags play a lesser role but they should still be properly optimized so that they contribute to the topical relevance of your web site.

META tags are basically composed of the Description and Keyword tags. The Description tag should provide the same or similar 25-30 word description of your web site that you created earlier for the first text within your visible page. The description is occasionally used as your description within the search engines but it is unpredictable. The Keyword tag should include the keywords/phrases that you are targeting in order of importance. Start with the most important and then proceed to less important but still relevant keywords. It is extremely important that you do not repeat any word more than 3 times within the Keyword tag. This includes words within target sentences. Also do not place repeated keywords close together.


Navigation. Provide Clear Paths

Is the navigation within your site entirely graphical or programming oriented? In this case I recommend that you create a textual link menu at the bottom of your page. For added punch (and this is a big hit) you should make each link count by using the keyword/phrase that best describes the target page. For example:

BMW Accessories | Used BMW for Sale | More About MyBMW.com

versus these less powerful links:

Accessories | Used Cars | About Us


Test and Spell-Check

Preview the page and spell check it then once you are certain everything is properly balanced, upload it to your server.


Hurry Up and Wait

What happens now is entirely up to the history of your web site and your marketing budget. There are many search engines that offer paid submission for the regular or prompt indexing of your new page/web site. If you have paid for prompt indexing then you may see the fruits of your labor within a couple of days depending on the search engine.

In this case I am going to assume that you have a non-existent search engine budget. If your site has already been submitted to the search engines then you can simply wait until a spider returns to check for new content, at which time your new site/page will be found and processed accordingly. If you wish this process to proceed post-haste or your site has not yet been submitted, then you may submit your newly revised page to the search engines for what may be a faster response time. Be sure to read the rules that each search engine carefully defines before submitting or resubmitting your web page.

Ten Minute Optimization Complete!


The following are additional elements that will supplement your online promotions. These are all fundamental changes that have occurred in the promotion world since the 10 Minute Optimization was first published in 2003. These had to be added to ensure that this white paper was thorough.

4) Link Building - SEO Tips Added for December 2006

The most dramatic change since 2003 has been the increase of importance of link building. Just how many reputable, relevant websites link to yours? Were these links freely given or did you have to provide a reciprocal link in order to achieve them? The world of search engine optimization has seen enormous growth in the link building sector and it has become a science unto itself.

"How can I build links?"

The following methods will gain you links and they are placed in order of importance:

Have a website that is so well maintained, so informative and effective that users freely provide you with links because they like it so much. Hands down, this method will always win over your competition. Search engines such as Google will reward your site handsomely if it finds many one-way links from reputable sites.

Publish articles via a blog or an online newsletter and syndicate these articles across news websites. For example, I syndicate many of my SEO articles across reputable SEO sites such as SearchEngineGuide.com, SiteProNews.com, ISEDB.com, WebProNews.com, etc. Syndication is actually quite effortless. just write content which is good enough that your industry sites happily post your articles.

Reciprocal link building is a highly popular method of building link popularity. Essentially you have to contact other industry-related websites and request a link to your website in exchange for one from your own. This type of link building is far less effective than one-way links from reputable sites but it does hold some weight.


5) The After Thoughts

Many methods of promoting a website have become available over the past few years; so many that it is a bit mind blowing. In most cases StepForth has written about each offering to provide our readers with the required knowledge to take advantage of them. Here are some places to start if you need a refresher:


6. Conclusion for the 2006 SEO Tips Redux
Do you find yourself overwhelmed? Perhaps you want to outsource your SEO? Obviously StepForth is an option that I highly recommend but there are many other firms out there whom you can contact for quotations. Here is an article by Jim Hedger on how to outsource your SEO needs and what to look for in an SEO firm. In addition, we recommend you visit www.seoconsultants.com for a list of reputable search engine optimization and placement companies.

Is Your Website Search Engine Friendly? Your Personal Checklist

When I sit down with new clients and discuss the status of their new or existing site they are often shocked when I am forced to inform them that their site is not search engine friendly. Encountered with a blank but slightly shaken look I then explain that this means their site has a particular problem that is hindering search engine rankings. Often this is represented by an inflexible design, overuse of advanced web technologies, or simply a weak navigation scheme. As a result, if they were to continue with the site as it stands they are unlikely to attain competitive search engine rankings.

The following is checklist designed to help you gauge the search engine friendliness of your website and, if you are in the midst of planning a website this checklist will help you avoid the common pitfalls of unfriendly designs.

Technologies
First consider what technologies your website is using. There are certain technologies that require a little more hand holding than others to ensure search engine compatibility.

FRAMES
Lets start with this oldie. Luckily, frames are becoming a way of the past what with the use of DIV layers and the slow onset of incredibly flexible AJAX coding. The long and the short of it is that if you have Frames on your website then you are starting off at a disadvantaged position that cannot be truly search engine friendly no matter what you do. There are, however, some remedial fixes that will tie you over until you can redesign your site; yes I said redesign. The fix that I recommend is to use a noframes tag whereby you place another version of your web page inside of your framed page. This ‘backup’ page is what the search engines will view; here you can place relevant content and navigational elements so that the search engines can at least navigate portions of your site that are (hopefully) not framed.

More info on the no frames tags.


FLASH
There was a big brouhaha that Flash had become search engine indexable and you no longer had to worry about its search engine issues. Frankly, I have not seen the fruits of this ‘improvement’ to a respectable degree yet so I still consider it a kiss of death for websites designed solely in Flash. If you have a Flash-only website then I recommend one of these two options; one is to design an html version of your website and make the home page of your website html rather than Flash where you can then allow users to choose between html or Flash. The second option is to redesign the site so that it mixes both html and flash together. For example, this might mean implementing Flash amidst content on an HTML page as you would an image. I realize there are certain limitations to this option but if you can create a slick site in this manner then you will have the best of both worlds; clean search engine friendly content along with an interactive, multimedia feel. Just remember that the majority of relevant text should be in HTML format for the search engines to index.


Search Engine ‘Unfriendly Dynamic URL’s
Unfriendly dynamic URL’s are a common side effect of using a Content Management System that is not designed with search engine rankings kept in mind. Here are some examples of some unfriendly URL’s:

Sample 1: http://www.mydomain.com/myproducts.php&354=prod333&subproduct

Sample 2: http://www.surfboardsforyou.com/boards/filename.php?
id=F98ZF4&productId=39222§ion=wicked&brand=582&template=532
These URLs are problematic because a search engine may consider these addresses too complex to spider. Why too complex? Suffice it to say that the more complex the URL, the higher the chance that a search engine robot will consider the content too dynamic to read; it changes too often to be valuable to a search engine.

The way around these types of URLs is actually not so difficult; it may only require a small investment of time and money. The ‘time’ will be required when researching which URL fix is right for your system. The money may be required to pay a programmer to implement and test the new URLs. Here are how the URLs might look once they are fixed to be search engine friendly:

Sample 1 Fixed: http://www.mydomain.com/myproducts/354/prod333/subproduct/

Sample 2 Fixed: http://www.surfboardsforyou.com/boards/wickedboards/39222/board532/

These URLs are better because they do not include the extraneous characters that are so telltale on dynamic websites. In addition, the URLs are designed to appear like normal website directories when in fact they are dynamic URLs.

Important: it is vital that you minimize the length of the URLs that you use. Search engines may stop crawling a website if there appear to be too many subdirectories. The samples above show fixed URLs that have about as many subdirectories as I would allow (4).
Design
This section focuses on the overall layout and usability of your designs from the perspective of a search engine robot. Search engine friendly design is occasionally quite complex so I have provided a list of the most common issues to consider.


Menus
Are the menus on your website spiderable? If not you may be hiding major areas of your website from search engine spiders and missing out on additional search engine rankings.

The fact is there are very few menus out there that a search engine will have a problem following, but there are definitely some worth avoiding. For instance do not use a JavaScript Jump Menu (example) as the core mode of navigation of your website; search engines cannot index this type of menu. Also be careful of Flash menus, they look slick but they will impede the progress of a search engine spider especially if they are the only means of navigation within your site.

General Menu Rules
The ideal menu would be text based and each text link would include the keywords you are targeting on the destination page. Setting up a menu with this much forethought requires that you determine the layout and content for your site before web design begins. Once you have a clear picture of the content for each page you can then research the keywords that are best to target per webpage. This essential keyword research can be done in house easily enough using systems like keyword research tools that provide you with a glimpse into how your customers think by showing how many searches there are per month (or year) for a particular term.

Remember, almost every page within your site has a very real opportunity to gain a top ranking; all you need to do is ensure that the design, content and site structure is optimized. Ensuring that the menu is carefully thought out and designed is a crucial step for top rankings.

Finally, if you are at all uncertain whether your menu is search engine friendly then be certain to back it up with a text menu in the footer of your page using the same keyword targeting principles noted above.

Tech Advice: a simple text menu may be less than desirable for you; in this case I recommend DHTML menus. These menus use text but in a manner that is quite appealing and very search engine friendly.


Sitemaps
Sitemaps can dramatically help the visibility of your website by allowing search engine spiders easy access to all of the pages in your site. Place a link to the sitemap on every page within your site to ensure easy access no matter where a search engine or user enters your site.

Sitemap Tips
Just having a sitemap will help but how you build your sitemap will also play a role in how well the search engines catalogue it. For example, if you have a twenty-page website it would be ideal to create a sitemap where each page is represented by a title along with a short description. Ultimately, the page may be a bit long but it will have content that the search engines like to index and it will boost the relevance of the linked pages because the titles will accurately represent the content. So in effect, you will now have more than just a sitemap; you will have a table of contents for your site that has the potential of getting a ranking and provides an extra boost to the ranking worthiness of each page.

Google Sitemap
Google Sitemap is an additional design element that you should consider adding. Here is an article Scott Van Achte wrote on how to implement your own Google Sitemap.


Layout
How you layout your page can make a significant difference in how well your site ranks and ultimately how search engine friendly it is.

Tips for Layout
Search engine robots read a webpage from the top of the source code (the programming that made your page – see “view source” in your browser) all the way to the bottom. As a result, it is important to ensure that both of the following elements are found as close to the beginning of code as possible:

A) A short sentence introducing the topic using the keyword targets you have chosen for the page.

B) Your text menu and other navigational aids, or if this is not possible it would be even more beneficial to start with a paragraph or two of relevant content followed by the navigation.

By placing this information near to the top of the page, you will promptly present the search engine robot with relevant text that backs up the page title and backlinks. You will also provide an immediate sitemap of sorts for the search engine to spider, which includes keywords relevant to each page.


Splash Pages – ACK!
With the odd exception Splash Pages are a kiss of death for a website because the home page (the first page seen when someone visits your domain), your most important page, is often converted into nothing but an excess entry point with little or no relevant content on it. Aside from reducing your chances for ranking, you are also making your visitors take another step to get to content or sales material in your site. Any additional steps you add will lessen the likelihood of a successful sale.

Please Let Me Change Your Mind
If you think you need to use a splash page then you need to talk to someone who will change your mind. No, honestly, give me a call if you want because there is nothing more painful to a SEO or search engine friendly web designer to see a Splash Page in use. If, in the unlikely scenario your splash page is required, there are ways to make it slightly more search engine friendly.

a) Add a highly relevant and well-worded paragraph to the page so that the search engines have something to index that shows them they are in the right place.

b) Either provide a link to your sitemap or implement a text menu in the footer of the page so the search engines can access the internal workings of your website without having to take an extra step.
In Summary
Creating a search engine friendly website requires a basic to advanced understanding of how a search engine works, depending on the complexity of the planned website. Complexity aside, the notes above provide a good basis for you to evaluate the friendliness of your website and make changes where necessary. If you have questions regarding your website you can email me at voravite@gmail. and I will do my best to help or I will direct you to someone who can.

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