IL2006: Wednesday Keynote

Shari Thurow, Webmaster & Marketing Director, Grantastic Designs, Inc.

Web Presence for Internet Librarians

  • Goals
    • define a search-engine friendly Web site desing
      • what it is and is NOT
      • why it is important
    • search engine optimization essentials
      • text component
      • link component
      • popularity component
    • other design considerations
      • home page desing
  • Why care about the search engines
    • people use them
    • [showed slide of number of searches of day per engine]
    • [number of searches by adults]
    • [how adults use search engines i.e. search for what]
  • Search engine friendly design is NOT
    • design to obtain top search engine position
    • [example of a doorway page]
  • SE friends deisng is
    • user-friendly that can be found on both crawler-based and human-bases search engines (directories)
  • Importance of site design
    • end users/site visitors/target audience (primary)
    • human-based search engines (secondary)
    • crawler-based search engines (secondary)
    • how you place words, graphics, etc communicates the content that you feel is imortant to both engines and visitors
  • 5 basic rules of Web design
    • easy to read
    • easy to navigate
      • “sense of place”
      • “scent of information”
    • easy to find
      • internal
      • external
    • consistent in layout and design
    • quick to download
      • 30 seconds or less on a 56k modem
    • EASY TO USE
  • Easy to find
    • search engines, directories, industry-related sites
    • go directly to the relevant page
    • within 708 clicks, preferrable less, as long as…
      • “scent of information”
    • most importnat information “above the fold”
    • contact information
  • search engines:
    • index text (all)
    • follow links (all)
    • measure popularity
  • if you dont’ place text on the web pages and create a site navigation scheme that crawlers can follow, your site will not rank well in the search engines
  • do your pages:
    • match what target audience uses to search
    • provide easy access to keyword-focused text
    • contain enough high-quality content so that objective, 3rd party sites will link to it
  • bring in a search engine specalist during the design/redesign process, not after the fact
  • successful SE optomization depends on:
    • text component (index text)
    • link component (follow links)
    • popularity component (measure popularity)
  • Text component
    • give people easy acess to your keywords
    • does the content appear to be focused
      • HTML title
      • breadcrumb link
      • headings
      • intro paragraph
      • calls-to-action
      • conclusion paragraph
      • graphic images
    • examples…
  • primary vs. secondary text
    • primary (all SE)
      • title
      • visible body copy
      • text at the top of the page
      • in & around hyperlinks
    • secondary (some SE)
      • meta tags
      • alt text
      • doman and file names
  • text component summary
    • use words that people search on
    • place keywords well
    • focus on primary text
    • place keywords prominently
    • use keywords frequently enough
  • link component / site & page architecture (follow links)
    • link component
      • site navigation
      • cross-linking
      • type of web page
      • page layout and structure
      • URL
    • SE friendly (most to least)
      • text links
      • navigation buttons
      • image maps
      • menus (form and DHTML)
      • flash
    • if navigation scheme is not friendly, should you avoid using it in your deisgn
      • no
      • design is for the users not for the SE
    • always have two forms of navigation
      • target audience
      • search engines
      • they often compliment each other
    • types of text links
      • navigation scheme
      • contextual links
      • embedded links
      • site map
    • MPABS
      • most people are basically stupid
      • marketing term
    • informational pages
      • contain infor for target audience
      • do not contain a lot of sales hype or jargon
      • spider-friendly
      • often have simpler layout
      • visually match the rest of your site
    • information vs. doorway pages
      • [too much here for me to transcribe]
    • example info pages
      • FAQs
      • press releases
      • tips/how-to
      • glossary & reference pages
      • location
      • category/gallery
      • product
    • crosslinking
      • must have related cross links
      • hierarchical
        • breadcrumb
        • contextual
        • category > sub cat
        • parent > child
    • red flags
      • doorway pages
      • hallways
      • envelope
      • mini/micro sites
      • sattelite sites
      • many more…
    • summary
      • 2 forms of navigation
      • know to use text links
      • graphic links ok
      • usability counts!
  • popularity component
    • nubmer and quality of links to your site
    • clickthrough popularity
    • how long on users on your site
    • do they?
      • continue to use
      • link to you
      • return to you
  • [rushed through the last slides as she was over time. Sorry, I couldn’t keep up any more]

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