Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Common SEO mistakes Part 3

5. Trying to get by with a "Brochure" Site.

If your site to be the top ranking site in your Business Domain, then you have to deserve it. The best way to deserve this status is to offer a good amount of relevant quality content, easy navigability and a pleasing look. You cannot get by with just putting a few pages with general descriptions about your company and service offerings and be done with it. For example, if you are selling perfumes, then back up your offering with reviews and helpful information for the consumers. In case of Electronics Items, information about after-sales support always helps. This will make your site a valuable resource. Lastly, try to have a web form. This makes a handy lead generation tool for you and at the same time makes it convenient for users to contact you. Human visitors, and search engines alike, will soon recognize you as an authoritative source of information in your field.

6. Redesigning an Existing Site and Neglecting the Old URLs.

Your old website may have been unimpressive lookwise, but maybe it had traffic flow and search engines may have cached those pages and people are finding those pages based on the information that the search engine bots compiled from them. If you redesign your site, and completely toss out the old urls, without compensating for it, then you are tossing away all the traffic you had built up earlier, because search engines will be sending people to pages that no longer exist.

There is a way to avoid this. If it is possible, stick to the same structure that your old site had and retain the same urls for the new pages. If this is not possible then make sure you adopt URL redirection. For this you will have to make a .htaccess file (a text file with instructions on the functioning of the site). This file will tell search engines to permanently redirect traffic from an old url to a new url. When this file is in place, anyone typing the old url will lead to the relevant page on the new site. Makes sense?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Common SEO Mistakes Part 2

3. Not Putting Title And Description Tags on Pages.

Have you ever visited a web page that showed the words "new page" or "Untitled Page" at the top of the browser tab? The website owner forgot to put a title tag on the page. The title tag, which is in the head section of the document is treated by search engines as one of the most important indicators about the content of a webpage. If you leave out the title tag or don't pay much importance to what you put up there, then you are wasting a good opportunity for optimization , as well as showing a sloppy kind of site construction.

Similarly, the description tag is often shown in search engine results pages (SERPS) as the description of your site. If you make a compelling description, it helps people to click through to your site. Ideally you want your site to be well ranked, but a high ranking is not enough. You need people to click through once they see your site's listing, and a good description can help you out.

4. Putting the Same Title and Description Tags on all the Pages.

Each of your pages is unique and has a special function, and you should let search engines and users know about this by changing the title and description tags to match the content on that particular page. It is not possible to optimize one single page for many different search terms, but it is possible to optimize each of the pages of your site for one or two important search phrases. If you take the time to make unique title and description tags for each of your pages, you can take advantage of this possibility and rank well for several search terms.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Common SEO Mistakes Part 1

Before you know what should be done to optimize your website and increase the usability factor, it is important to learn what you should NOT do.This list is not in any order of importance as all the points mentioned here should be taken seriously.

1. Using a "Splash Page".

During your endless voyage through the Internet you must have come across sites where you go to the main page and all you see is a beautiful picture with the two words of text saying "enter here." The picture is beautiful (maybe), but this is a disaster when it comes to search engine optimization. Search bots are looking out for texts, but generally there is no text on a "splash page." The main page of any website is the most important page, and it has the best chance of being optimized. If you clutter it up with images instead of spiderable text, you are messing up your chance of optimizing the site. Search engines don't appreciate splash pages, and many human users too are annoyed by having to click (again) to finally view the content. Avoid splash pages altogether if you can (unless your site offers Adult Entertainment for horny individuals who visit your site without ever having the intention of signing up for the paid services).

2. Putting Important Text, or even all Text as an Image.

I have seen moronic (or lazy) web designers produce a beautiful web page that has images and text combined to give the look and feel of a normal web page. However if you try to put your cursor over the text and select it, you can't do it because there is no text. The whole page has been rendered as a jpg or gif image. It looks good to the viewer, but the search engine robot can’t find any searchable text. Be careful if you are using some automated web design tool which turns text into images. Also while it is quite extreme to turn an entire page into an image, you should also avoid changing your important headlines into gif images. If you have a flash website, try not to make the content area in Flash. In other words, avoid a 100% Flash website at all costs (unless you have a signature URL like or Its costly, takes time to develop and extremely difficult to optimize. However, if you are loaded with mucho moolah, then people are not going to question you. Instead they will simple term your stupid and weird behavior as “eccentric”.