Keep your Blog search engine friendly

When you tweak your Blog, there are some basic rules that apply to designing your pages to be “search engine friendly”. Keep these rules in mind as you build your site, or you could be in for a lot of headaches and problems. All these rules have to do with creating a Blog that search engine bots and spiders can navigate and read easily. If you have no option, but to “break” one of these rules, you’ll need to sort out the details of making your content accessible to the search engines.

First Rule: Try to Avoid Frames.
Search engines don’t handle frames very well, so you’re better off avoiding the use of frames. If you must use them, simply create a “NOFRAMES” version of
your Blog that links all of your content together. But the best option is to avoid frames.

Second Rule: Flash, QuickTime, Add-ons, etc.
Search engine spiders actually can read and index Flash web sites. The problem is that they can’t really trust what they find in the Flash files, because there’s no easy way
to determine which text is visible. Designing your entire site in Flash is crazy from a usability standpoint. This doesn’t mean that you can’t use Flash, QuickTime, or other plug-ins selectively on your HTML web pages. You can. There are a lot of cool things you can do with embedded audio and video, or with the interactive elements that Flash can create. Just because search engines don’t see it, that doesn’t mean you can’t use it, but be picky and selective if you want to use those elements.

Third Rule: Be picky with JavaScript.
Although some of the search engines have experimented with reading JavaScript, you should assume that anything you do with JavaScript is basically invisible to spiders. This
doesn’t mean that you should try to get tricky, by doing “sneaky redirects” to take people away from your search engine optimized pages to somewhere else.

Fourth Rule: Image Maps.
Image maps can be useful in design, but the search engines don’t all follow them, and like images, there’s no way to include anchor text. You need an alternative form
of navigation if you use image maps.

Fifth Rule: HTML Validation.
Actually, there’s a lot of debate about whether HTML validation is important or not. In my experience, running your code through an HTML validator will almost always
generate a lot of “warnings” that don’t mean much in the real world. However, when you see actual “errors”, this might mean that you have forgotten to close a tag or
something, and this can create issues with spidering and indexing. My rule of thumb is to fix the errors and ignore the warnings or analyze the warnings carefully. For example if you have a paypal link on your Blog and you do a CSS test, you will probably get a warning, but there is no problem with the link itself, it’s just that the CSS Validator doesn’t recognize the paypal code. So in this case, you should just ignore that warning and leave your paypal link where it is. This kind of warning is not going to affect your site at all in terms of SEO.

Also remember that Tandil Theme is 100% Valid CSS and XHTML.

Good luck! 🙂

1 Comment to “Keep your Blog search engine friendly”

  1. By Paul, December 1, 2009 @ 11:25 am

    Hi,I would like to know what Frame version of blog means?