The SEO Alphabet
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Follow the ABC's of search engine optimization:
A - Alt Tags
All images should include ALT tags. The ALT attribute in HTML is used
for three main reasons: the ALT tag provides further details about an
image or hyperlinked graphic, the ALT Tags enhances web access for individuals
with vision impairments. The ALT tags will also help search engines discern
what an image represents.
B - Bandwidth
Compress images and use a mixture of text with images to conserve bandwidth
and help your webpages load quickly. Use good design techniques to reduce
bandwidth and maintain a fast loading website. This will save both storage
space and data transfer allowances.
C - Content Management System
Many businesses have adopted CMS systems for web design. Unfortunately
these systems are not always designed to be search friendly.
D - Description
Each page of a website should contain a unique, and relevant description.
The description should make use of relevant keywords and keyword phrases.
E - Error Page (404)
Use a custom 404 page to capture any traffic from mistyped URLs or abandoned
web pages. Sometimes it takes a while for the search engines to catch
up to abandoned pages, so they may send traffic to a web page that no
longer exists. Using a custom 404 web page in order that you capture the
traffic and provide visitors navigation options.
F - Fresh Content
Fresh content is the corner stone of search engine optimization. New content
shows that a website is updated on a regular basis. Content is a critical
part of search engine optimization. A website must contain both unique
and fresh content to rank well.
G - Google
Google dominates other search engines, so it is important for webmasters
to optimize pages in a way that will help the web page perform well in
a Google search.
H - Header Tags / H1
Use H1 Tags in the HTML to emphasize keywords or sub-headings on a webpage.
I - Image Optimization
Images should be optimized for web pages. Use standard web formats and
compress the images without compromising quality. It is important to specify
the width and the height of your images in the HTML code. If the height
and width of the image is not specified, the web browser will have to
reposition the text once the pictures load, consuming more time.
K - Keywords
Keywords are the hallmark of search engine optimization. Keywords should
be integrated into the body of the website and the meta tags of the web
L - Link Building
Link building is an important aspect of SEO. Submit the website to large
directories and niche portals to generate incoming links.
M - Meta Tags
Meta tags should be defined and included in all of the web page's HTML
header information. Each web page on a website should contain unique meta
N - Navigation
Not only is it important to have a clear navigational structure for human
visitors, but also one for search engine spiders which follow a website's
links to index the web page's contents. Have a navigation structure that
is viewable by both web visitors and search spiders.
O - Optimize
Optimization is a continuous process. Optimize the website and monitor
web logs to determine the effectiveness of the changes that you have made.
P - PageRank
PageRank is one of the methods Google uses to determine the relevance
or importance of a web page. PageRank is a vote, by all the other web
pages on the Internet, about how important a Web page is. To raise PageRank,
one must have a large number of incoming links from trusted sources.
Q - Quality Links
There is more to linking than just getting a large number of incoming
links. The quality of the incoming links is important as well.
R - Robots.txt
Robots.txt files should be used to tell search engines what web pages
should and should not be spidered.
S - Social Bookmarks and Social Networks
Social bookmarks and social networks can be used to build incoming link
T - Title
All web pages within a website should contain unique title tags. Titles
should include keywords and be descriptive in nature.
U - URLs
URLs are also part of search engine optimization. Using hyphenated keywords
to name the sub-pages of a website has been known to play a role in search
V - Viral Marketing
Viral marketing is a marketing strategy that encourages people to pass
along messages to others in order to generate added exposure. The viral
piece is a self-propagating practice or pattern of Internet use that moves
from person to person.
W - Web Design
Web design should not focus solely on aesthetics. The design should be
done with search engine optimization in mind.
X - XML
XML is eXtensible Markup Language it is used as a standard to transfer
Y - Yahoo
Yahoo still has one of the best web directories. Be sure to manually submit
your website to the Yahoo Directory.
Z - ZeeEnd
About the Author:
Sharon Housley manages marketing for FeedForAll http://www.feedforall.com
software for creating, editing, publishing RSS feeds and podcasts. In
addition Sharon manages marketing for RecordForAll http://www.recordforall.com
audio recording and editing software.
Published - January 2010
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