| 3:41 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Just what's needed, POR.
Last evening I was thinking that what is needed is a crash course in basic, very basic SEO. Of course, you can't do basic SEO unless you have a sound page with which to start.
Good stuff, just when it's needed.
|all newcomers may want to study carefully |
Definitely. I have a strong feeling that many people were spoiled by G's sometimes seemingly over reliance on backlinks and anchor text. I think that much of the brouhaha caused by Florida was because it -- whatever the mechanism actually is -- unmasked pages in which on-page factors were largely ignored.
Now, with continuing changes at G and coming changes at Yahoo and MSN, good, basic practices are more important than ever.
A great start, certainly something on which to build.
| 3:59 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Nice to have all the info thatís scattered throughout these forums in one nice well written post
|too much information|
| 3:59 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Well, I thought I was following exactly that, but I do have one question to throw in to the mix.
With the file names, is it also ok to use an underscore to separate keywords? As far as I understood, the underscore was interpreted as a space when the keywords were broken down. Should I make a switch to a hyphen?
(Not a dificult switch now but could be a nightmare later)
| 4:05 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Great post P1R!
|Should I make a switch to a hyphen? |
I would switch the directory and file names to hyphens. There are some good Bulk Renaming tools that make this a very easy thing to do.
| 4:12 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|With the file names, is it also ok to use an underscore to separate keywords? |
I've never been a proponent for underscores. I've used hyphens since I first started back in 1996. Why? Well the first thing that struck me back then was that underscores were obscured in link text. To some users, it appears as a space in the link text and not an underscore.
Also, I've followed many topics over the years where the debate has risen on using hyphens vs. underscores. GG himself once stated that they preferred hyphens. Google also treats hyphens and underscores differently.
I would switch to a hyphenated structure as soon as possible. Actually, I would recommend no hyphens if possible. I've had a different mindset over the past year or so when it comes to naming files and directories. My goal is to provide the shortest URI possible while still making it SE and visitor friendly. Most importantly, I make sure it is relevant to the page itself.
|too much information|
| 4:26 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|...underscores were obscured in link text. To some users, it appears as a space in the link text and not an underscore. |
I didn't think of that, but I know exactly what you mean. That's probably a good reason to switch regardless of what the SE sees.
| 4:33 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Read a lot of tips over the last few months. One thing i wish i knew is how much benefit/weight certain things have.
Trying to make my pages html4 Strict, though currently Transitional. Does it really matter?
Also moving from table layout to css, having the main content in the html coming before the menus(quite large) etc. Worth while?
Have quite a few acronyms on some pages, and want to use the title(element/tag) so it displays the acronym in full. Will this be a problem,wil it look like iím spamming keywords?
Are the meta tags above the *only* ones i should use, seen some sites stuffed with all kinds of tags?
| 4:42 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|Trying to make my pages html4 Strict, though currently Transitional. Does it really matter? |
Only from the browsers perspective. Transitional allows the use of elements that cannot be used in Strict mode. I always shoot for Strict when I can. You'd be surprised, most of your Transitional pages may already validate as Strict.
|Also moving from table layout to css, having the main content in the html coming before the menus(quite large) etc. Worth while? |
Most definitely! This appeals to both visitors and spiders alike. If the visitor is on a slower connection, they will get to see content first while the other elements are being loaded in the browser. The spider gets what it came for quickly!
|Have quite a few acronyms on some pages, and want to use the title(element/tag) so it displays the acronym in full. Will this be a problem, will it look like Iím spamming keywords? |
I am very fond of using the <acronym> element...
<acronym title="Search Engine Marketing">SEM</acronym>
Be sure to study up on the specifications for utilizing the <acronym> element. You should only use it on the first instance of each acronym on the page. Do not use it on all instances.
|Are the meta tags above the *only* ones i should use, seen some sites stuffed with all kinds of tags? |
From my perspective, yes. There are other pieces of metadata that you may use but they are more for assisting in grouping documents together, providing a table of contents, showing prev and next pages in a series of documents, etc.
| 6:29 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Thanks for the great post. Really a great help for newbys like myself.
Dumb question: Why it is necessary to have the hiphen or underscore in the file name?
| 6:48 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|Why it is necessary to have the hiphen or underscore in the file name? |
Using a hyphen to separate words in file names is suggested. Some spidering entities cannot index two words from a continuous string of text. For example...
In the past, the pagename would be treated as one whole word. As search technology improves, this may not be the case in the near future.
As it stands right now, I still believe that URIs are part of the overall equation in assigning relevancy to a page. Some will disagree with me but, I've got way to many pages out there that seem to tell me otherwise. So, the above would now look like this...
The hyphen represents a space for most spidering entities. In this case, we took a continuous string of text and broke it up into spiderable words.
| 7:06 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Great post, POR - wouldn't change a thing. Looks like our experiences/methods are pretty similar.
Couple things to ask about:
|The page title element (some refer to it as the title tag which is incorrect) |
Why is that incorrect?
|Internet Explorer (IE) will display alt text when you hover your cursor over an element that utilizes the alt attribute. |
This may only be a Mac thing, but when I'm in IE, it will first show the text in the image's title attribute if such text exists.
We use the title attribute regularly for this purpose, but since it's also so ripe for spam I've never considered it something to be done for SEO purposes.
| 11:11 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Brilliant post pageoneresult!
Hello all, may I first wish you Happy Holidays!
I have been lurking for a short while and I have gained alot of valuble insights, thank you all very much!
I have a question regarding content> I see that many people suggest continuously adding content and that Content is King. My company offers a service: I have a one page index that explains it, a one page order form and an automatically generated confirmation form. That's all folks!
I change the index rarely, perhaps to add more customer testimonials or revise currency rates.
I might add that my company/domain is KW1-KW2-KW3.com and that on G for:
KW1-KW2 I am #3
KW1-KW2-KW3 I am #2 (backlink) #3 and #9 (directory)
KW1-KW2-KW4 I am #1
KW1-KW2-KW5 I am #1 and #2
KW1-KW2-KW6 I am #3 and #4
I was actually a little better placed before Florida and then got totally knocked off G but I am really pleased (as you can imagine) things are pretty much back to normal.
My customers (when I, or my staff, meet them) often comment on the simplicty of the site and how fast it loads..
So, why should I add content?
Sorry for the long post!
| 11:16 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Nice post POR,
all makes sense, though for me its the last two parts that are most important but as certain updates have shown, other things can become so much more important, though i think they are destined to be very minimally weighted.
| 11:54 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Nice post pageoneresults
I think it is true to say that we all know the basic's ( or we should do)
it just nice to see it confirmed again
| 11:58 pm on Dec 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Welcome to WebmasterWorld, shuttle_guy!
Different sites obviously have different strategies and needs, all that you read here should be viewed as general guidelines applicable to most sites. If your current strategy works, I guess that it works!
| 12:08 am on Dec 25, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Thanks for the post, POR. It's nice to get these 'recapping' posts from time to time just to make sure I'm singing off the same song sheet every one else is. It's kinda like skydiving with 'Post-It' notes of instructions stuck on my arm on the way down.
Shuttle_guy, welcome to WW. And congrats on the good positions for your site. As Mohamed_E points out, each site will have it's own sweet spot in terms of SEO'ing, and whereas the mantra 'Content is King' is applicable for most sites, it's obviously not needed in your situation. For now. ;) If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
| 12:19 am on Dec 25, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Thanks for a good reading for over the holidays. We sometimes drift away and this will be a good time to refocus. A good early present.
| 1:43 am on Dec 25, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Thanks for your comments everyone, there is more to follow as soon as I get all the references in place. Without the references, there is no validity to what I'm saying. ;)
|Why is that incorrect? (title tag) |
The W3C refer to it officially as the title element. I called it a title tag for years until sinking my teeth into the specs. All of those links that I posted above are like gold to me. If you study those and implement the suggestions, you are well on your way to developing the Perfect Page.
In reference to the <acronym> element, it is widely misused as there is an <abbr> element which is not fully supported. Many have taken the hackers route and use the <acronym> element for all instances of abbreviations and acronyms. I'm one of them. Until the <abbr> is fully supported, I'm not adhering to the specification and I should be. ;)
| 4:44 pm on Dec 25, 2003 (gmt 0)|
One thing I'd like to add is that, if you have the ability, you should remove the file extensions from the file names. Here's an earlier thread about this on WW:
I highly recommend following the link to the W3C article referenced in this thread.
| 8:53 am on Dec 26, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Very good post. Valuable information for everyone. I have some questions.
1. What should be the maximum size of a page?
2. Is there any use of Description and Author tag?
|troels nybo nielsen|
| 9:53 am on Dec 26, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Welcome to WebmasterWorld, pathak
> What should be the maximum size of a page?
The short answer is: as small as possible.
But "size" may be a more problematical term than many people think. Images may add heavily to the total size of the page that is actually shown in the browser of your visitors, but that does not need to be a real problem if you design your page in such a way that your text starts showing at once and
the images are added later.
On my websites very few pages are larger than 10k if you only count the text and the html markup. But it is also a question of the visual size on the screen. I do not want to force my visitors to scroll very much.
> Is there any use of Description and Author tag?
I think that what you call the dexcription tag is what pageoneresults calls meta description tag in the very first post.
AFAIK search engines do not take notice of author tags. But there may other reasons for using them.
| 5:08 pm on Jan 21, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Excellent post! Very useful.
|King of Bling|
| 8:38 pm on Jan 21, 2004 (gmt 0)|
> 1. What should be the maximum size of a page?
Try to aim for 40k to 60k for the overall filesize (images, text, and html). Fast-loading pages delight visitors and search engines alike :-)
| 8:43 pm on Jan 21, 2004 (gmt 0)|
>>>> 1. What should be the maximum size of a page?
This is another debated issue. There are many who believe that page size is not a factor in rankings.
|King of Bling|
| 8:54 pm on Jan 21, 2004 (gmt 0)|
The best Web sites load in about 10 seconds at 28.8 Kbps.
Your designers may have T1 lines or DSL or cable modems, but 93 percent of your customers don't. Plus, all sorts of things further slow down download times. But the bottom line is that nobody is going to wait more than 10 to 15 seconds for your page to appear. Want your site to appeal to most people? Well, most people still surf at speeds under 56K, have their monitors set for 800 x 600 resolution, and don't even know they can change that, much less how.
Short and sweet
| 9:04 pm on Jan 21, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Read my post....I was talking specifically about rankings...not usability.
>>>The best Web sites
According to who? ;)
| 9:21 pm on Jan 21, 2004 (gmt 0)|
|There are many who believe that page size is not a factor in rankings. |
I'm one of them! Although I do believe there is a point where page size could be a detriment. The thing I'm more concerned about is the text to html ratio of the page.
Crazy Chester, thanks and Welcome to WebmasterWorld!
|King of Bling|
| 1:08 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)|
Ager... my mistake. I was thinking both SE & Conversion
>>>The best Web sites -- According to who? ;)
That should read 'The Top-Selling E-Commerce Websites'.
| 1:28 pm on Jan 22, 2004 (gmt 0)|
I see you guys talk about the <acronym> tag, just curious if their are good advantages to using it, never heard of it till today! :-)
I have many acronyms on my page so do you think it would be worthwhile to switch them all over with approriate tags?
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