2014/05/05

SEO

Search Engine Optimization

SEO is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine's "natural" or un-paid ("organic") search results. As part of Multimedia Design program, I have worked a lot with search engine optimization. I find it extremely interesting and satisfying to optimize an existing site, and then be corroborated the results.

*White Hat versus Black Hat techniques

SEO techniques can be classified into two broad categories: techniques that search engines recommend as part of good design, and those techniques of which search engines do not approve. These methods are classified as either White Hat SEO, or Black Hat SEO. White Hats tend to produce results that last a long time, whereas Black Hats (A.k.a. spamdexing) anticipate that their sites may eventually be banned either temporarily or permanently once the search engines discover what they are doing.

Professional On-Site & Off-Site Optimization

As experienced web developer, I have many tools in my backpack when it comes to optimizing a website. A good combination of on-site and off-site optimization ensures a perfect result. Do you need your website to get checked, I'll give you a free quote and at least an idea of ​​where optimization is ideal.

How I do it

Below you'll find an unordered list of techniques I use for SEO:


On-Site Optimization

Effective Keywords

How many keywords should you assign to each page on your website - and how should you pick them? Here's some basic tips for choozing and organizing your keywords:

Think like a customer:
Write down the main categories of your business and the terms or phrases that might fall under each of those categories. Include terms or phrases your customers would use to describe your products or services.

Select more general or specific keywordsdepending on your goal:
select specific keywords that directly relate to your ad's theme. Using more specific keywords would mean that your ad only appears for terms that apply to your business.

Group similar keywords into themes:
To show more relevant ads to potential customers, try grouping your keywords and ads into ad groups based on your products, services, or other categories.

Use the Keyword Planner:
You can get keyword ideas and traffic estimates to help you build a Search Network campaign by using the Keyword Planner.

Meta Tags

The whole point of the search engines is to provide the information that users are looking for. One of the earliest methods to optimize a website so that it will show up high in the search results for specific keywords was to offer meta data for the search engines to crawl.

Meta Tag Format:

<meta name="MetaTagName" content="Data specific to the name" />

Example of a Title Tag Format:

<title>Unique Keyword Rich Page Title - Company Name</title>

Language Meta Tag Format:

<meta name="language" content="en-us" />

Character Set Meta Tag Format:

<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=UTF-8">

Description Meta Tag Format:

<meta name="description" content="An accurate keyword rich description of this page." />

Keywords Meta Tag Usage:

<meta name="keywords" content="All,keywords,and keyword phrases,associated,with this page,specifically,listed in order of preference,separated by commas" />

Classification Meta Tag Usage:

<meta name="classification" content="products, product classifications, company classification, company type, industry" />

Example Rating Meta Tag:

<meta name="rating" content="General" />

Example Robots Meta Tag:

<meta name="robots" content="index, follow" />

Example Revisit-After Meta Tag:

<meta name="revisit-after" content="21 days" />

Example Creator Meta Tag:

<meta name="creator" content="Doug Peters (Doug-Peters.com)" />

Example Publisher Meta Tag:

<meta name="publisher" content="Symbiotic Design (SymbioticDesign.com)" />

Example Proprietary Verification Meta Tags:

<meta name="google-site-verification" content="UniqueProprietaryCode4Site" />

Textual Content

Your page content does the talking to your online business prospects. Designing the structure and ensuring the quality of this content benefits you in all parts of website optimization; from usability and conversions to on-page SEO.

Repetition is very important for SEO friendly content. Once you've chosen your keyword phrase, you want to repeat it several times throughout the page. For instance: 2 times in the first paragraph, in every sub-heading, once in the main heading, twice in the meta title, 2-4 times more throughout the document, and at 2-3 times in links and image alt text on the page.

Write relevant content. 
Search engines have ways of recognizing when a page is not really about what it might seem to be about.

Put conclusions at the beginning. 
Make your keywords to be denser towards the top of your article Use lists instead of

paragraphs.

Lists are easier to get your seo content into without your repetition seeming strange.

Size & Structure

The structure of your website plays a tremendous role in its overall SEO authority, and the specific navigation elements you put into place deserve plenty of attention in this process.

HTML5 Outliner

HTML5 Outliner is a great tool to validate for a clean semantic output.

http://gsnedders.html5.org/outliner/

Robot.txt

The robot.txt file is to guide the user agents and webbots/webcrawler. E.g.
	User-agent: *
	Disallow: /cgi-bin/
	Disallow: /tmp/
	Sitemap: http://helwegshus.dk/sitemap.xml

Google Sitemap

The sitemap protocol allows a Webmaster to inform search engines about URL’s on a website that are available for crawling.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9"
xmlns:image="http://www.google.com/schemas/sitemap-image/1.1" <url> <loc>http://www.helwegshus.dk</loc> <lastmod>2014-04-01</lastmod> <changefreq>early</changefreq> <priority>0.2</priority> <image:image><image:loc>http://www.helwegshus.dk/img/logo.png</image:loc></image:image> </url>
<url> <loc>http://www.helwegshus.dk</loc> <lastmod>2013-12-10</lastmod>
<changefreq>weekly</changefreq> <priority>0.8</priority> </url>
</urlset>

Google Tag Manager incl. Universal Analytics

The Tag Manager keeps track of a set of tags and tag-firing rules that define when those tags should be made available for our site. The Tag Manager lets us easily update our tags on our web site and mobile applications without edit the HTML code.

The Tag Manager has built-in tag templates for AdWords Conversion Tracking, Google Analytics, DoubleClick Floodlight and AdWords Remarketing.

E.g.

<script>
(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o) m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga');
ga('create', 'UA-50893213-1', 'helwegshus.dk'); ga('send', 'pageview');
</script>

404 Error page

The 404 error page is replaced by a function which submit the bad request, or broken link as a value to the index page in a query string.

On the index page, the parameter is stored into an error-logging table in our MySQL database for later reviews.

On the index page, we highlight a subtle reminder to the user of the invalid call and generate a list of recordable misstatements and possible solutions based on previous calls.

All void calls are indexed based on the frequency and occurrence.
A full list is generated to the web master for any errors coordination or the use of optimization of content and keywords.

This is how the bad request can be avoided in a .htaccess file:

 
  Options +FollowSymlinks
  RewriteEngine On
   
  # specific rule
  RewriteCond %{QUERY_STRING} ^([^=]+)=([^&]+)
  RewriteRule ^(constant)$ /index.php?url=$1&type=%1&task=%2 [L]
   
  # general catch-all
  RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
  RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
  RewriteRule ^(.*)$ index.php?url=$1 [L]
  

Leverage Browser Caching

Response from our server doesn’t include explicit caching headers or if some resources are specified to be cached for only a short time.

Solution: Enable browser caching for our server. Static resources should have a cache lifetime of at least a week.

For third-party resources like ads or widgets, they should have a cache lifetime of at least one day.

The browser caching can be specified in the .htaccess file: E.g.

  <IfModule mod_headers.c>
  # 1 YEAR
  <FilesMatch "\.(ico|pdf|flv)$">
  Header set Cache-Control "max-age=29030400, public"
  </FilesMatch>
  # 1 WEEK
  <FilesMatch "\.(jpg|jpeg|png|gif|swf)$">
  Header set Cache-Control "max-age=604800, public"
  </FilesMatch>
  # 2 DAYS
  <FilesMatch "\.(xml|txt|css|js)$">
  Header set Cache-Control "max-age=1172800, proxy-revalidate"
  </FilesMatch>
  # 1 MIN
  <FilesMatch "\.(html|htm|php)$">
  Header set Cache-Control "max-age=60, private, proxy-revalidate"
  </FilesMatch>
  </IfModule>

Improving Server Response Time

Server response time measures how long it takes to load the necessary HTML to begin rendering the page from our server, subtracting out the network latency between Google and the server.

Solution: Reducing our server response time under 200ms. There are dozens of potential factors which may slow down the response of our server: slow application logic, slow database queries, slow routing, frameworks, libraries, resource CPU starvation, or memory starvation.

Removing Render-Blocking JavaScript

HTML references a blocking external JavaScript file in the above-the-fold portion of our page.

If it encounters a blocking external script during parsing, it has to stop and download that JavaScript. Each time it does that, it is adding a network round trip, which will delay the time to first render of the page.

Solution: JavaScript needed to render the above-the-fold region should be inlined, and JavaScript needed to add additional functionality to the page should be deferred until after the above-the-fold content has been delivered.

If the external scripts are small, you can include them directly into the HTML document. Inlining small files in this way allows the browser to proceed with rendering the page.

<head>
    <script type="text/javascript">
      /* contents of a small JavaScript file */
    </script>
</head>

To prevent JavaScript from blocking page loading, we recommend using the HTML async attribute when loading JavaScript.

<script async src=”file.js”>

Enabling Compression

Most webservers can compress files in gzip format before sending for download, by using built-in routines and reduce the rendering time on the web site. The code below should be added to your .htaccess file

<ifModule mod_gzip.c>
mod_gzip_on Yes
mod_gzip_dechunk Yes
mod_gzip_item_include file .(html?|txt|css|js|php|pl)$
mod_gzip_item_include handler ^cgi-script$
mod_gzip_item_include mime ^text/.*
mod_gzip_item_include mime ^application/x-javascript.*
mod_gzip_item_exclude mime ^image/.*
mod_gzip_item_exclude rspheader ^Content-Encoding:.*gzip.*
</ifModule>

 

Viewport Configuration

Triggers the page peed if not specified. Setting the viewport gives control to the page’s width and scaling on different devices.

Our site is optimized to display well on mobile devices while including the viewport metatag in our head section.

<meta name = viewport content=”width=device-width, initial-scale=1”>

Off-Site Optimization

PageRank

PageRank is an algorithm used by Google Search to rank websites in their search engine results. Named after Larry Page, one of the Google founders.

It works by counting the numbers and quality of links to a page to determine a rough estimate of how important the website is.

Obtain links from high ranking publisher sites
To achieve the best PageRank, due to the diagram, it is important that links from other web pages already have a high PageRank.

Community Creation in Social Networking Sites

By doing this you can extend your network online, get connect with your friends, share things with each other, and promote your company/website to build an online reputation.

This is most likely the same as Web 2.0 (Participatory Web), which means you have to show your active participation on a regular basis.

Forum Postings

Create a forum/online discussion board of your own and start a discussion or share topics with your friends. 

Search Engine Submission

Submit your website to the most popular search engines like Google, Yahoo, MSN, Altavista, Alexa, Alltheweb, Lycos, Excite, etc., to get listed for free.

Social Bookmarking

Social bookmarking is the practice of saving bookmarks to a public Web site and “tagging” them with keywords.

To create a collection of social bookmarks, you register with a social bookmarking site, which lets you store bookmarks, add tags of your choice, and designate individual bookmarks as public or private

Cross-Linking

The best known example of successful internal linking is Wikipedia. Also try to get a content link from websites/blogs that are related to your site theme.

Try getting a link from within their site content using a targeted keyword as anchor text (much like Wikipedia does).

Photo Sharing

Publish/share your website product pictures and make them public. Let your friends see them and comment on them too, which will help drive traffic towards your website.

Local Listing & Yellow Pages

Instead of going global and facing huge competition, make your website local so that search engines can easily view your website and fetch the content. This will help you to reach a targeted audience. Submit your website to Google Local, Maps, Yahoo Local, Yellow Pages,

Press Release Promotion

If you are a business/service provider then go for PR submission in popular PR websites like 1888pressrelease

Widget / Gadget Development

Develop some interactive and innovative widget/gadget applications (such as an online poll or game widgets) for your website and publish them on your blog/website or in other popular social networking sites like Facebook 




Do you dare to kiss the frog?

If you want to make money, then don't hesitate to Contact Me for SEO advices and optimization. I will return a free quote for the lucky ones...