Trying to reach the top of the search engine rankings
is a combination of an art form, pure science, and luck.
There is no guarantee that you will reach the top but you should at
least try. Most people will not go beyond the first few
pages of listings. You will need to do a little bit of study because
all search engines are not alike. If you follow the tips below you will
cover the major search engines.
When thinking about how
a search engine looks at your page, you need to look at a number of
items on your site:
- The Title
- Your description in the meta tag
- Your headline
- The first paragraph
- Page content
- Keywords in meta tags
- ALT text in your image tags
- Even your domain name
First a little
bit about Meta Tags. Many, but not all, search engines use meta
tags in their indexing. Here is an example for a site selling
<TITLE>Joe's Antique Dolls</TITLE>
<META name="description" content="Learn about and
buy antique dolls from 1600 to the present.">
<META name="keywords" content="antique dolls, dolls,
antiques, buying antiques, buying dolls, doll history">
The meta tags
are placed within the head tags at the top of your page. Notice
that the title as well as the description used the words antique and
dolls in them. Then the keywords tag has a listing of words you
think people will be likely to type in when they are looking for items
that may be of interest to them.
first paragraph, and the general content of the page are important for
indexing. Search engines look over your page to try to find keywords
that will answer searches. Try to incorporate your keywords in
all of these areas but be careful not to try to load the page with them.
That is called spamdexing. Many search engines now will eliminate you
if you use "invisible words" (text in the same color as the
background), extremely small repetitive keywords, etc.
to use keywords if possible in ALT tags for images, don't spam.
Many search engines cannot read image maps so it is a good idea to have
text links also.
A word about
frames. Many indexes cannot read frames. When they see the
frame index, that may only see "sorry you r browser is not frames
compatible". This won't help you at all. It is really
best to avoid frames if at all possible. If you do use frames
you should set up a no frames alternative that can be read by search
engines. For more information on writing frames with no frame alternatives
page at Builder.com
Other Links of Interest on the Subject
- the best place to find out more on this subject
as well as everything you ever want to know about search engines
(this link will open a new page)