2010
02.26

Finding a new website on the internet might be difficult for people. You have to place it right up there, right? The answer is no..!! You need links or you should inform the top search engines that your website is online. Screaming in the jungle will not help you, but certain tools can do wonders. A XML sitemap is one great seo tool.

xml-sitemap

How do you get a sitemap? Its Simple. You can either code it yourself (protocol here), or use a XML Sitemap generator. There are tons of free generators and tons of software out there to buy. I personally use xml-sitemaps.com for my projects. I have them crawl my sites, save the document made, and then edit it using a text editor.

What is the benefit? Well, it gives a concise look at your website. It’s how you inform the search engine spiders what you consider important. Is your privacy policy that important? Probably not as much as your main product page.

Now you’ve made one, what to do now?

  1. Put it in your main directory. Ex. http://www.mysite.com/sitemap.xml
  2. Edit your Robots.txt to include it for all engines. Add a line in there like the one below
    Sitemap: http://www.example.com/sitemap.xml
  3. Tell the engines about it directly.
    1.    Learn more about Webmaster Central Here.
    2.    Yahoo SiteExplorer
    3.    MSN/Live

Probably the single best resource to learn about sitemaps is Sitemaps.org. Their FAQs and Sitemap Protocol say just about everything you might need.

If you want professionals to get sitemaps configured and do some search engine optimization for your website conctact us at +94115050939 (Sri Lanka)

2010
02.20

Web design and SEO has to work together and be compatible together or else they are mutually exclusive. The best known incompatibility to us is the extensive use of Flash programming to design websites. Website owners unknowingly hire designers who are not concerned or not aware of the ultimate objective of a commercial website…which is to make profit for the website owner. Therefore the best looking website will not have any success in online business if the website is unreadable by search engines; this will render the website and makes the business invincible to online visitors who search through search engines. The basic idea is that Flash content cannot be read by major search engines. So if your entire website is made with flash and the descriptive text, navigational links, headers and footers are developed with Flash, Google will never understand it and read it.

To be Search Engine friendly means that everything should be discoverable by search engines on your website. So in essence your SEO actually starts with the web design. This is one of the major mistakes most of the businesses make. They usually first seek a designer who may not be good in SEO knowledge and a much less expert. SEO friendly web Designs are essential which makes the foundation for a long term competitiveness of the website.

Having explained all of this we now know that interactive websites gets better results because of the visual stimulation of video, onsite tours, etc. so how can you make this work? Knowing that most of the search engines likes text and it is essential to be found the answer is to do both in a very precise balanced approach so that search engine spiders can be provided with what they are looking for while providing human beings the correct elements and content to get a positive response or conclusion.

First the fundamentals of Search engine optimization must be adhered to:

  1. Search-Engine Friendly Pages – HTML; no Full Flash.
  2. Unique Page Titles for every page – must be targeted on the most important keywords (requires keyword research).
  3. Unique Meta Descriptions
  4. Installation of Search Engine Friendly CMS (Content Management System) to form the basis for consistently adding and indexing new content.  We like WordPress and Joomla depending on the needs of the website.  Sometimes we use a combination within one domain to take advantage of unique advantages each has.
  5. E-Commerce – critical selection of SEO Friendly E-Commerce software; this means SEO-friendly shopping cart structure that includes database functionality for unique product names, unique descriptions; all of which easily read by the search engines by conforming to search engine guidelines.  We have great success with OsCommerce and Virtue mart and  have used it to “save” certain E-Commerce websites from themselves due to obviously SEO unfriendly E-Commerce software.
  6. Blog – Content Management System Selection for easy indexation by the search engines; any such system must be text-readable, include ample room for Titles, Descriptions, Tags, Social Media compatibility, RSS functionality, commenting-friendly.
  7. Dynamic Site Map – automatically submits new site-map to Google every time new content is added to the site.

You should be aware that there is much more to SEO. These elements alone will not take you to the first page. However making your foundation strong keeps you in the game and makes you competitive towards success.

With solid SEO fundamentals in place, you now need to pay attention to web page interaction through optimal user interactivity.  After all, getting great ranks isn’t enough … you need visitors to convert.  There are countless methods and tools available to increase and optimize user engagement, interaction, and entertainment and ultimately reach both a logical and emotional conclusion towards taking the act of conversion.

Some of the SEO friendly tools that can be integrated into producing websites are:

  1. Video Introduction – to grab and hold attention in those first few critical seconds.
  2. Sliders – Moving slides of images and / or text that quickly deliver the value proposition to the visitor.
  3. Engaging questionnaires or polls
  4. Featured Articles and Press Releases
  5. Animations
  6. Special Offers
  7. Knowledge base
  8. Newsletter Sign-up

Marrying interactive web design with SEO is ultimately essential towards both driving traffic and driving conversions.  You can’t do one without the other and expect to be successful.

Looking for better conversions?  Better Traffic?  Contact us and let’s talk about it.  It’s a free initial consultation.

2010
02.16

Google has explained a big change about how they manage search results by including synonyms in keywords which might be used in search keywords. How will this affect your website position in Google search results??

usb-bus

Why is it important that Google can deal with synonyms?
Google targets to show the finest results for your search. To achieve this it’s very important that Google’s algorithms can understand the search keywords which you may use in the search query. One important factor of recognizing the words is to understand synonyms.

These are words which can have the same meaning, Example: “home” and “house”. People who are searching for “home improvement” might also be interested in websites which contains the keyword “house improvement”
But the issue is that some words can have many meanings. For example, “case” could mean “box” , “container” or it can mean “instance” , “occurrence” or example.

Google’s measurements show that synonyms affect 70 percent of user searches across the more than 100 languages Google supports.

What has changed?

According to the posting in Google’s official blog, Google has improved the way that they detect synonyms. For example, the algorithm can now find 20 possible meanings of the search term “GM”. GM can mean General Motors, George Mason in [gm university], gamemaster in [gm screen star wars], Gangadhar Meher in [gm college], general manager in [nba gm] and even gunners mate in [navy gm], etc.

Google also made a change to how the synonyms are displayed. The searched words and the synonyms are now displayed in bold in the search results. Web pages that contain only synonyms of the searched word can also be displayed in the search results.

Do you have to change your web pages?
If you have optimized your website as explained by our search engine optimization consultants and as explained then you don’t have to change anything. Here’s a reminder:

1. Think out of the box.
Don’t just use the technical terms that you use in your company. Think about the words that other people would use to describe your product. For example, don’t just use “rhinoplasty” but also “nose job” and “nose surgery”.
Our search engine consultants will help you to find the best keywords for your website.

2. Optimize different pages of your website for different keywords.
The more pages you optimize, the better. It is much better if one web page is highly relevant to one keyphrase than somewhat relevant to many keyphrases.

Don’t stuff a single page with keywords. The keywords should fit naturally in your web page content. Our consultants will help to find out where on your web pages you should use your keywords.

Different people use different words to find the same things. Use different ways to talk about your website topic and optimize as many pages as possible of your website.