FAQ: Search Engine Optimization

most reputable source:
http://www.searchenginewatch.com

best blog:
http://www.searchenginelowdown.com

Excellent list of resources!

I don’t know if this belongs here, but I have found it useful:
http://www.ranks.nl/tools/spider.html

Talking of blogs I am a regular at SERoundTable.com [ Chris and other famous SEOs contribute to it ] and SEOBook.com . You may wanna add them too!

To clear up any possible confusion, where you said AdWords here, you actually mean AdSense:

Does having Adwords on my website help me with my search engine ranking?

Not really. It may get Google to spider your site more completely and frequently as it needs to know what the content is on your pages so it may serve up the right ads. But it won’t give you a boost in any way in the rankings. Won’t give you any extra PR either.

Although it is also worth mentioning that AdWords does not affect your ranking in the SERPs either.

good research stymiee, u have provided that most of SEO’s were looking for

Another excellent thread at sitepoint. Kudos !

Nice info stymiee.

Can you recommend a good links program?

I feel it’s worth a mention that PR isn’t directly reduced by outgoing links*, it’s reduced because your own internal links have to share the page’s PR with the outgoing links. This waters down the effect of your internal linking, which can be a big part of your site’s PR.

There’s a good explanation at http://pr.efactory.de/e-outbound-links.shtml (in fact, the whole site is a good reference as to the effects of your site’s structure on PR). I’m thinking of doing a quick reference guide of these effects for my more questioning clients.

*it’s a misconception I’ve seen a fair bit ‘in the field’.

That is great - you have a lot of useful information and while I am no expert, it looks accurate. Thanks.

Such a great post… this primer has helped me find answers to the most basic of questions and issues I had about SEO. Lots of sound advice, THANKS!

Does anyone have an opinion on when you should submit a new site. I am working on a pet project that will inevitably take a long time to complete, but will be useful from the outset.
Is it better to get the site noticed early, (when it is small) or later when it is more useful?

I’d start it out when it’s first useful – when it’s small, but it looks complete. Under construction pages are a big no, so wait until your site has enough content to be self-sufficient. Don’t add links to the content that’s not there yet.

A great site is never really complete – you should always have some new content planned.

Excellent work Stymiee! Thank you very much!

a big mistake you made…

you have linked “Search engine friendly” text to http://www.sitepoint.com/article/485<br%20/> instead of http://www.sitepoint.com/article/485

please make that fine

Nice thread stymiee, I’m sure people will find this very useful.

great post. I was looking for this information everywhere and this is one place I have found it all together.

Another bunch of good SEO tools can be found at http://www.lilengine.com/tools/

Added the following today. What do you think?

What would be a good SEO strategy?

Before you launch your site, you should have done the following:

  • Optimized your <title> tags on each page to contain 1 - 3 keywords
  • Used appropriate markup where necessary (<h1>, <em>, etc.)
  • Used keywords liberally yet appropriately throughout each page
  • Designed the navigational structure of the site to channel PR to main pages (especially the homepage)
  • Used Search Engine Friendly URLs (if necessary)
  • Created a complete website with plenty of quality content
  • Used keywords in your domain and url (http://www.keyword1.com/keyword2/keyword3.html)

Immediately after launching your site you should do the following:

  • Submit your site, by hand, to all major search engines
  • Submit your site to all free directories (dmoz, yahoo (if applicable), etc…)
  • Begin a link building campaign (attempting to get keywords in the reciprocal link anchor text)

Finally, as part of an ongoing strategy:

  • Continually update your website will quality content
  • Continually seek free and reciprocal links preferably from sites in your genre

Great Information. Thank you.

But what is search engine friendly url?

Search engines tend to be cautious about indexing URLs which involve GET variables, like

http://www.example.com?id=123&page=4

To make this a search engine friendly URL, you might change the URL like so:

http://www.example.com/123/4

The PHP Anthology 1 has an excellent discussion of this topic. Besides making search engine friendly URLs, another advantage of doing this is that you can tell in your server logs just which pages your visitors are looking at. Without doing this, all you know is that they visited

http://www.example.com

Hope this helps.