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Search Engine Optimization for Your Web Site. Dr. Soe, Dr. Westfall & CIS Dept. California Polytechnic University, Pomona, June 2009 Agenda. Introduction Steps to take to make your pages show up higher in search engines

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search engine optimization for your web site

Search Engine Optimization for Your Web Site

Dr. Soe, Dr. Westfall & CIS Dept.

California Polytechnic University, Pomona, June 2009

  • Introduction
  • Steps to take to make your pages show up higher in search engines
  • How do search engines work?
  • How do you get your web site listed?
  • Search engine exercise
introduction search engines
Introduction: Search Engines
  • Search engines return lists of links based on search words entered by user
  • Most users only look at 10-20 items in search output before changing words
  • Placement--how high a web page is in the listings--is critically important in generating traffic from search engines
high search engine placement
High Search Engine Placement
  • "We can guarantee you a top 10 ranking"
    • what's it worth?
    • how can they do it?
    • Ixquick search on telecommuting productivity
      • does not include Google, but see next page
high search engine placement5
High Search Engine Placement
  • Google and Yahoo searches on specified words
    • telecommuting productivity
    • Westfall research
    • Mrs. Westfall
    • textbook ripoff
what are key words
What Are "Key Words?"
  • words that are what your web page is really about
    • just as the words in the title of a text book are what it's about
    • usually are found in your page a lot
  • words that people would use to search for a web page like yours
putting keywords in pages
Putting Keywords in Pages
  • in the text of your pages, using an authoring tool like Dreamweaver
    • make sure that keywords are in the visible text of your page fairly often, especially in prominent places such as near top, in links, headers, etc.
  • in the code of your pages
    • using an editor like Notepad
    • or using authoring tool's code window
putting keywords in code
Putting Keywords in Code
  • put keywords into <title> tag
  • put keywords in <H1> tag at page top
  • put keywords into <img alt=" "> tags
  • put keywords in the text of links and in the letters of the URL also if possible
    • e.g.,
code examples
Code Examples
  • Include some keywords in phrases in important HTML tags, but do it in a natural phrase that describes things
    • Replace <title>Untitled-1</title> with a <title>[keywords]</title>
    • Replace <img src="file1.jpg"> with <img src="[keywords].jpg" alt="[keywords]">
    • Replace <p>[some words at top of page] with <h1>[keywords among words]</h1>
what not to do
What Not to Do
  • don’t use keywords that are not related to the content of the page
  • don’t repeat keywords in any ways that don’t make sense
    • not in very small text
    • not in text color similar to background color
    • not repeated many times in a row
register your web site with search engines
Register your Web Site with Search Engines
  • Register individually with top sites
    • Yahoo! , AOL, MSN, Open Directory Project (goes into Google, etc.)
  • Try site submission web sites?
    • Submit Express 75,000 search engines, $25
    • Submit-it submission also a waste of money, but other services might justify $49
  • Change content, resubmit every so often?
search engines deliver indexes
Search Engines Deliver Indexes
  • User requests information via search page
  • Query engine searches database
  • Delivers list of web resources
    • creates results web page based on search
  • Listed in order of a calculated index
    • index values based on search words, and also on "popularity" of site
    • but usually preceded by "paid placements"
web directories built by human indexing
Web DirectoriesBuilt by Human Indexing
  • Analyze site’s purpose
  • Classify sites by broad subject area
    • hierarchical classification schemes
  • Yahoo! - has many people reviewing web site submissions
    • doesn't have to accept submissions
    • 6 week delay unless pay for priority service?
meta search engines
Meta Search Engines
  • Don't have their own databases or indexing
    • instead, combine results from other search engines
  • Examples
    • Dogpile, Vivisimo
    • Ixquick (top 10 listings in other search engines)
search engines ranked by of people that use them
Search Engines Ranked by % of People that Use Them
  • Google 56.3%
  • Yahoo 21.5
  • MSN 8.4
  • AOL 5.3
  • Source: Nielsen/Net Ratings quoted in Wikipedia Search engine article as of July 2007
get site into directories
Get Site Into Directories
  • Directories (e.g., Yahoo!) require careful selection of search categories & keywords
  • Search for your keywords on Yahoo! to find appropriate categories
  • Yahoo! asks for a 25-word description of content
    • make it really good to impress human indexers
targeting spiders
Targeting Spiders
  • pick "keywords" that people would use to find a page like yours
  • make these keywords prominent in your web pages, especially in the entry page
meta tags
Meta Tags
  • keywords meta tag used to be important
    • <meta name="keywords" content= "telecommuting, research, telecommuting research, telecommute, telecommutes, telecommuter, telecommuters">
    • search engines generally ignore them now because of widespread attempts to use them to manipulate rankings
meta tags description
Meta Tags - Description
  • even though not used much in rankings anymore, contents of following tag are shown in Google outputs
    • <meta name="description" content="Westfall research and papers on telecommuting, telecommuting productivity, telecommuting economic analyses, telecommuting strategies">
keywords for spiders
Keywords for Spiders
  • All keywords are not created equal - spiders give heavier weights to:
    • keywords in the <title> (more than once?)
    • keywords in <h1> and other headers
    • keywords in other text near top of page
    • keywords in <img alt="[keywords]"> tags
    • keywords in links (seen by user or in URLs)
    • How Search Engines Rank Web Pages
more keywords for spiders
More Keywords for Spiders
  • Use keywords frequently, but don't repeat same word more than once in a row
    • OK: pizza pizza
    • not good: pizza pizza pizza pizza pizza pizza
  • Use variations of keywords (plurals)
  • Use keywords in alternate text for images
    • <img src "file.jpg" alt="[keywords]">
  • Google Search Engine Optimization 101 My list
links for spiders
Links for Spiders
  • Number of pages linking to a site has become extremely important
    • Google pioneered this
    • if high ranking pages link to a site on the same topic, it must be good
  • Quality of links is also important
    • need to be relevant both to page they are on and to linked page
trying to fool spiders
Trying to Fool Spiders
  • Search Engine "Spamming":
    • spiders are being programmed to detect it
  • Examples:
    • repeat hidden keywords
      • in background color, or <font size=1>
    • keywords not related to site content
    • irrelevant links: "link farms" or "link stuffing" (ethical issues)
i can guarantee a top 10
"I can guarantee a top 10 …"
  • Junk mail and web sites
  • True, but…
    • not for your 1st choices of key words
  • Use relatively unique combination of several words, and put them into key parts of page (<title>, <H1>, etc.)
    • probably not many people will search for this combination of words
      • e.g., telecommuting productivity
guaranteed top 10 listing
Guaranteed Top 10 Listing
  • Use misspelled words
    • including 2 words ran together (no space between e.g., muhammedgonzales)
  • Search for these made-up words
    • keep trying until you find a "word" not found on any other page
  • Put in page, get links to page in another page(s), submit to search engine(s)
  • identify two words, NOT in quotation marks, that get only one result in Google
  • examples
  • Exercise: find another Googlewhack
google bombing
"Google Bombing"
  • drives traffic to other pages by links and keywords
    • early (2001) Google bombing campaign
    • Wikipedia Google bomb article
    • Wikipedia Political Google bombs article
search engine exercise
Search Engine Exercise
  • Search for your keywords on any automated search engine
  • For top 2-4 sites, look for keywords in:
    • <meta...>, <title>, <h1>, <a href="…>, <img… alt="…>, etc. (use View, Source)
    • words in page, esp. near top
    • also use Google advanced search (Page-Specific) to find pages linking to these sites
  • Report any patterns you see