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East SEO Web Site Development Tips

Feb 25, 2008
So, you've bought your domain, got some hosting. Now what? You need to make sure that your web site is as friendly as possible to the search engines so that they send you some traffic. This process is called "search engine optimization" or SEO for short. It is probably the most important - and most neglected - part of web site development.

Here are some tips to help your SEO web site development.

1. Don't use frames

Frames may help you to control the layout of your site but they are a nightmare as far as the search engine robots are concerned and will make it difficult for your site to be crawled by the search engine spiders.

2. Make sure there's text on your pages

This even goes for the page featuring that expensive Flash movie that you're currently forcing visitors to your site to watch (or more likely press the "skip intro" link). Search engines don't know what's written on images or animations. They can only read text (the images search is their best guess based on the text on the page and the video search is based on the description of the video). So make sure they have text to read!

3. Separate style and content

This means using CSS as much as possible to control the layout of your pages. That way the spider can read more of your content if all the "this is how it should look" stuff is self contained in its own CSS file. The biggest snag with this is that CSS needs to be really well written if it is to look nice at different screen sizes, on different browsers and with varying amount of text on the page. Test at least in Internet Explorer and Firefox and play around with the width of the browser to see how well or badly your site copes.

4. Use a title tag

HTML design programs are good at putting in really generic titles such as "Page 1" or "Home Page" but they're almost certainly not what you want the search engines to think your site is about. Change the title to something meaningful. If possible make your title catchy and make sure it's short enough to be completely displayed when the search engine results are shown. This is basic SEO but you'd be amazed how many people don't do it.

5. Put in a meta description tag

Despite what you may read, the description tag is useful. It isn't often taken into account when Google or whoever decide which results to show, which is why some people say it isn't important. But it's normally used as the extract that's shown below the blue clickable link to your site. So if it says "XYZ home page constructed with Dreamweaver" instead of something interesting, that's what will likely show up below your title. And if it's blank, you're giving the search engines free reign to put whatever they want there.

6. Keep it simple

Spiders like simple. Despite all the advances in the internet, they're fairly dumb and the easier you make it for them to understand what your site is about, the more they will reward you.
About the Author
Get more help on SEO web site development and do your best to make sure that your website gets the search engine results it deserves at http://www.squidoo.com/seowebsite
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