Stacy Pessoney – Search Engine Marketing Tips

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Improving Your Site's Crawlability and Indexing

There are a few simple guidelines that you can follow to make your site more crawlable and more easily indexed by the search engines. In general, you need to focus on making your site as user-friendly as possible. Your second focus should be organization. Organizing your site so that it flows easily not only makes navigation easier to your visitors, but also makes more of your pages visible to the search engines.

Sitemaps can be an easy way to organize a site with a lot of pages. Your visitors can easily see where they are or need to go and search engines can tell which pages you intend to be most important. XML Sitemap pages are easily crawled by search engines and help the search engine to see all of the pages on your site.

Using links to help your visitors navigate the site is another good idea. Search engines have a hard time following image links like drop down menus. Text links are most easily followed. This is especially true if the text is short and to the point. You want it to be descriptive of the content on the page that you are linking to without being too lengthy. Links like "click here" are confusing to search engines, so stick to precise descriptive text for your internal links.

Work on your page titles and descriptions. Page titles should be descriptive of the actual information on that page. Each page should have a unique title. Avoid naming every page the title of your site. Also, avoid page titles like "Page 1", or lengthy titles that stuff in a lot of keywords. Be precise and to the point. Keep in mind that the page title will show up in search results when people are looking for your site. The goal of the page title is to inform the person looking if this is the exact page they are looking for or not.

The next thing that will show up in a search is the page description. This is the description meta tag under the header of your site. This should broaden the title of the page without repeating it. This is usually a couple of sentences. They can be a teaser to entice visitors to become curious about the page. Two or three sentences are plenty. Avoid using lists of keywords here. This is more a summary than a place to squeeze in keywords. Each page should have its own unique description.

These few tips can help you to make your site more user friendly and crawlable by the search engines. Indexing will be more efficient and search results will be more understandable and usable by visitors. A search engine marketing company will be able to go a lot more in depth with your optimization, but this is a starting point for you to start improving your site.

About the Author: Stacy Pessoney is a Project Manager for ArteWorks SEO, one of the top search engine marketing companies in the world. A graduate of the University of Alabama, she implements and manages comprehensive SEO strategies and serve as an organizational liaison among company executives, clients and colleagues.

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