What to do to optimize for Google, Bing and Yahoo. Below is a checklist of good practices of search engine friendly web design. Remember these are the basics and are best implemented with a search engine optimization expert.
- All images have alt-tags and images with links use precise keyword phrase text.
- Meta-title tags are different for all pages and relate specifically to a page
- All pages should have a title as text (preferably in large font h1 or font + sizes). The title should be similar to the meta-title.
- Meta-title should be no more than 120 characters long and preferably under 100 characters
- Meta-Description should be less than 200 characters long and be written to attract a potential visitor because they are used in the search engine snippets. Generally it is good to have the keywords targeted appearing as the first words in the description.
- For hardcore optimization meta-descriptions should be unique per page.
- Navigation links should appear as text along the bottom of the page. The text used in the links should be only the targeted phrase. This phrase should correspond to the linked page’s title(s)
- Copyright or link to the homepage of the site should be included on every page of the site with a link text corresponding to the main keyword phrases
- On any page keywords phrase should appear at the top, middle, and at the bottom of the page in a way that seems natural for both the visitor and potential search engine/directory editors.
- Keyword phrases should appear as 6-8% of the total page text. They should not appear above 10% because it may look like spam.
- No white text on a white background
- No cgi scripted links or redirects
- Avoid splash pages
- Flash cannot be properly indexed so should be avoided unless used solely as an image.
- No link farms or excessive cross-linking
- No duplicate content (pages with little text where only images change might be mistaken for duplicate content, i.e. in a catalog.)
- Avoid cloaking
- No excessively small text
- Avoid doorway pages or mini-sites
- Avoid automated search engine placement software like Webposition Gold
- Don’t submit sites to the search engines or pay for these types of services. Search engines will pick up a site if other listed sites are linked to it. Generally, submitted sites take longer to rank well because they start off with zero link popularity where as sites found through links have immediate link popularity.
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