SEO for Web Developers

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My presentation for the Barcamp Belfast conference on 22 May 2010.

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SEO for Web Developers

  1. 1. SEO for Web Developers Barcamp Belfast © Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  2. 2. Shameless Self-Promotion <ul><li>Barry Adams (I’m Dutch, really!) </li></ul><ul><li>Search Engine Specialist @ Visual Script </li></ul><ul><li>Blogger: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>State of Search </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Search Engine People </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Great Websites Blog </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>(Searchcowboys) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Interwebz professional since 1999 </li></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  3. 3. The Issues <ul><li>URLs </li></ul><ul><li>HTML code </li></ul><ul><li>HTTP status codes </li></ul><ul><li>Content Management Systems </li></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  4. 4. URLs <ul><li>Parameters are your enemy </li></ul><ul><ul><li>One character different = new webpage for a SE </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Duplicate content – which page is THE page? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Indexation – where does it end? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Doesn’t make for good bookmarking & link-sharing </li></ul></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  5. 5. URLs <ul><li>Bad URL: www.domain.com/default.aspx?p=6&l=en&id=98EAB06 </li></ul><ul><li>Good URL: www.domain.com/category/product/ </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Static </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Keyword-rich </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Doesn’t have to end in .html </li></ul></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  6. 6. HTML Code <ul><li>Good code is clean, tidy, and scannable </li></ul><ul><li>If you have to look for where your elements are, it’s too messy </li></ul><ul><li>It doesn’t have to be W3C compliant (but it doesn’t hurt to aim for it) </li></ul><ul><li>Shorter = better </li></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  7. 7. HTML Code <ul><ul><li>Use unsorted lists for navigation (plain HTML) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Content high up in the code </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>H1, H2, H3 tags for headlines </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Standard tags for bold and italics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Minimise internal & inline CSS and JS – put it in separate files </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Minimise the amount of CSS and JS files (1 each) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Omit what you can – comments, empty tags, useless meta tags, unused CSS, viewstates, etc. </li></ul></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  8. 8. HTTP Status Codes <ul><li>Know them, understand them, love them </li></ul><ul><ul><li>404 = Page doesn’t exist and never has </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>302 = Page isn’t here right now but will be back, look at this in the mean time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>301 = Page isn’t here and won’t ever be here again, but look at this instead </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>200 = Everything’s A-OK, here you go </li></ul></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  9. 9. 404 Not Found <ul><li>Use it for everything that has never existed </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t redirect </li></ul><ul><li>Make it a user-friendly error page </li></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  10. 10. 302 Temporarily Moved <ul><li>Not particularly useful </li></ul><ul><li>If you want to redirect temporarily, ask yourself why </li></ul><ul><li>No SEO benefit whatsoever </li></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  11. 11. 301 Permanently Moved <ul><li>Use for everything that has existed – expired pages, old subdomains, deleted content, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Passes (nearly) all link value to the new destination </li></ul><ul><li>Works across domains </li></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  12. 12. Content Management Systems <ul><li>No CMS is inherently SEO friendly </li></ul><ul><li>Checklist: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>URL structure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customisation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Scalability </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Plugins & extensions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>sitemap.xml </li></ul></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  13. 13. Content Management Systems <ul><li>Is everything editable? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>URLs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Title tags </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Meta tags </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Content (duh) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Alt-text & filenames </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Navigation links </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Custom HTML </li></ul></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved
  14. 14. Questions? <ul><li>? </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.visualscript.co.uk </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>twitter.com/badams </li></ul>© Visual Script 2010, all rights reserved

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