Successful Site Architecture

Oct 28, 2004 • 4:14 am | comments (0) by | Filed Under Search Engine Strategies 2004 Sweden

The first session of the morning I have attended was a basic one, but I wanted to hear some of the speakers, the session is named Successful Site Architecture.

Alan Perkins was first up and he went through many of the common issues with Web sites that are not search friendly. Navigation issues, URL issues, domain issues, JavaScript and others. Very good summary.

Shari Thurow was next up and she will go through specific examples, as opposed to overall conceptual issues. She then discusses what she will discuss; your Web site directory, site nav, URL, types of pages, the page and some linkage. She then goes over what is the root level of a site, the search spiders look for your homepage or robot.txt file first. Exclude test pages in your robot.txt file, exclude scripts (cgi, java, etc.) and pop up windows, exclude redundant content pages. She then gets into the basics of the URL, and defines which URLs are the most search friendly and which are the least. She then goes over which pages are the most important to optimize, i.e. no need to optimize a privacy page but it is important to optimize category pages and product pages. She goes over the 404 page and discusses why Apple's 404 page, she loves it from a usability purpose. Then moves on to why a site map is so important and tells the audience that having short descriptions about what is found within each section under the link, as oppose to just having a link. Now she is discussing the breadcrumb trail, but keep in mind, she is showing screen shots of real sites - so this information is being communicated clearly (I think). Cross linking pages internally is very important, and using the correct anchor text relevant to the page is as important, she shows examples of a good way and bad way to do this.

Ask Jeeves, Michael Palka gives his quick presentation about the basics. And then Magnus Sandburg said hello and said will answer some Q & A.

Q & A: Q: Any good tools for keywords? A: Action Outline is what Chris Sherman uses.

We got off on a dynamic content question string of question, but that is covered in a different session.

Then moved onto a discussion about optimizing pages versus optimizing sites. Any questions on that, feel free to ask below.

Q: Tables versus CSS? A: Google said tables are not better then CSS for ranking purposes. Shari Thurow agrees, but she takes the usability spin on it.

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