Karelia Software would like to offer this community the following excerpt from their complimentary guide to "Getting Your Website Noticed."
Please visit our Squidoo page for more great internet marketing ideas[/URL].
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Give the people what they're looking for...
This may seem obvious, but it's important that if you want people to find you during a search, your site must contain the text that they are looking for! This absolutely does NOT mean that you should fill up your pages with dozens of potential search keywords; that's counterproductive. But the content should speak the language of the people you want to find your website. Are you using industry jargon to describe the services that your business performs, or are you using layperson terms? Listen to your customers and use the words that they are using. If you do this, your potential visitors will find and understand you, and it will make Google happy too!
What this boils down to is that Google likes the same kind of content that your visitors like. There are only a few things to keep in mind:
- When you have images, always use the inspector to enter a description for the image. (In technical terms, this is called the "alt tag.") Doing so will not only help people who have trouble seeing the image, but it will also be additional, relevant content for Google. (Although Google doesn't seem to use the image description text for determining the importance of a page, they do collect and index that content just the same.) The description will also help people find the appropriate content when using Google's image search.
- Be sure that each page on your website has a decent amount of text on it. Google wants to see unique pages, and it can only tell if this is the case by scanning the page's text. If you have only a few unique words on a page (such as a title and a small caption on a photo page), with the rest being "boilerplate" text (such as the page header, site menu, sidebar, and footer) -- which Google doesn't realize is appropriate window dressing the way a person does -- Google may shun your page.
- Feel free to enter keywords (tags) for a page, but don't overdo it. Apparently Google doesn't really make much use of the keywords, though the other search engines do. 10 keywords is more than enough, and they should be words that appear on that page.
- Give your page a decent, descriptive title so that when your website is listed at Google, Google will show a useful and compelling title. It's best if your page title (and even your site title) contain the keywords that people are likely to search for.
- Make sure that the file name of each page is human-readable and contains useful words as well. (Sandvox automatically generates file names, but these are customizable in the page details area in the lower left corner of the Sandvox document window.)
- We have something coming in Sandvox 1.6 (due out in the next month or so) that will give you even better control over the page title and description that are presented to Google. Stay tuned!
For more information, visit the Karelia Software complimentary guide to "Getting Your Website Noticed" for more online marketing tips[/URL].