Search-Friendly Web Development at RubyNation

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  • 1. Search EnginescomScore February 2011 Rankings Google AOL Bing Ask 65.6% 1.7% Yahoo 13.1% 3.4% 16.1%
  • 2. Why?
  • 3. “SEO Expert”
  • 4. == “Spammer”
  • 5. White Hat vs.Black Hat
  • 6. Discovery +Navigation
  • 7. A Story...
  • 8. “Not my audience!”
  • 9. “Not my audience!”
  • 10. “Experts” Not Needed
  • 11. Professional Practices• User-Centric Design• Test-Driven Development• DRY and Maintainable Code• Server Performance• Client-Side Performance• Search Engine Considerations
  • 12. Six Simple Rules• Can’t outsmart Google (or Bing or Y!)• Follow Google’s advice• Obey conventions and standards• Stay away from hacks• Understand how search engines work• Think like a searcher
  • 13. Search Engine Pipeline• Crawling• Indexing• Ranking
  • 14. <crawling>
  • 15. Discovery• Links to your pages from other sites• Links to your pages from within your site• Your sitemap.xml
  • 16. Check internal links$ wget --mirror
  • 17. sitemap.xml• Tell search engines exactly what you want them to crawl• sitemaps.org• Limit per sitemap: 50,000 URLs, 10MB• Can specify multiple sitemaps with a sitemap index
  • 18. <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?><urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9">   <url>      <loc>http://example.com/about</loc>      <lastmod>2010-01-01</lastmod>      <changefreq>monthly</changefreq>      <priority>0.8</priority>   </url></urlset>
  • 19. Generating sitemap.xml• Write it by hand, stick it in public/• Build a controller, action, and route entry to respond to ‘sitemap.xml’. Use XML Builder to generate the entries. Cache it.• Importantly: Strive for 100% coverage.
  • 20. robots.txt• Exclusion rather than inclusion• robotstxt.orgUser-agent: *Disallow: /profile
  • 21. Be nice to the crawler• Be performant. Fast server response. Fast page load. Compress files. Use if- modified-since header.• Non-www vs. www - pick one.• Ensure unique content. Use <link rel=”canonical”/> where approriate.
  • 22. </crawling>
  • 23. <indexing>
  • 24. Don’t sabotage it• Don’t use a 302 redirect when you mean a 301 redirect.• Make sure images, video, Flash, Silverlight, and AJAX are accessible.• See the Google Webmaster Central Blog for details.• Region-specific content? Think about the bots.
  • 25. </indexing>
  • 26. <ranking>
  • 27. <title>• Most important element to search engines• Think long and hard about it• Keywords! Think like a searcher.• Best format: Page Title | Site Name
  • 28. URLs• Override to_param for pretty URLs.• Dashes are word separators, underscores are not. Use dashes.• International domains are treated as such.
  • 29. <meta>• <meta name=”description” content=”...” />• Make it unique for every page. Use content_for.• Shown to users, doesn’t affect ranking.• <meta name=”keywords” ... /> is ignored
  • 30. Headings and Content• <h> tags should be used appropriately.• Page content should match what the <title> and <h> tags refer to.• Limit use of text-indent:-9999px and display:none in CSS.
  • 31. Rich Snippets• Microformats, RDFa, Microdata
  • 32. </ranking>
  • 33. Tools• Google Webmaster Tools• Bing Webmaster Tools• Yahoo! Site Explorer
  • 34. Five Takeaways• Think like a searcher• Create a sitemap.xml• Optimize your <title>s• Use Google Webmaster Tools• Read the Google Webmaster Blog