Seems like a simple question. However, many website owners do not have a fully search engine friendly site – and many don’t even know it. In most of these cases, search engine optimization was never even considered during the website development stage.
All website are not created equal. Some are optimized for search engines – and others are not. While it is true that building a SEF website costs more, it is something you cannot forego. Each time your business is not found in a search – you can bet your competition’s site is.
What are the ingredients of a search engine friendly site?
1. Can be crawled
First and foremost, if your website cannot be crawled by search engine spiders, it will not be indexed. What does this mean? You will not get found in a search.
2. Unique title tags
So the search engines can crawl your site (past your home page to sub pages). Now it needs to index your website. Avoid using the exact same title on every page of your site. The website title, as well as the page titles, tells search engines what information can be found on that web document. It is the most important tag on the page.
3. Meta description tags
Along the same lines, a unique description for each web page on your site provides additional information for search engines that allows for proper indexing.
4. Unique URLs
Yes, believe it or not, there are unfriendly site designs that display the exact same web address on each and every page of their site. Once again, proper indexing will not occur.
5. Alt tags
Last but not least, search engines only read text (the kind that can be copied and pasted in a document). They cannot view images, video and Flash (in some cases). It is important to use alt “text” in your website code so that they can be included in their indexing of your web page.
This, of course, is not a complete list. But these are some of the major and common barriers that search engines encounter.
Bottom line – A website should always be built for the web visitor (they are, after all, your prospects). But don’t stop there. Sites should also be designed for search engines. When they can find you and understand your information, they can direct web searchers to your website.