General Tips for Getting Listed in Search Engines:
Many search engines utilize a setup known as "Spiders" to collect information about your web site and store in their database. It requires two things, your web address or URL and your email address. One problem is that every search engine requires different information, making the submission process a time consuming process. This is why you should know as much as possible about each and every search engine and how they index web sites. We all know that getting listed higher in the engines means more hits to your site.
1. Use keywords in the <TITLE> of your document making it as descriptive as possible. When visiting your site, an agent will go first to the <TITLE> tag. For clarification purposes, the <TITLE> tag is what a browser will display in its title bar. Search engines will display the text located between the <TITLE> tags when your web page is listed in a search.
By making your <TITLE> descriptive, you'll be better off than those who only have keywords within the text of their page. It will also be helpful when people bookmark your web site. If a more descriptive name appears in a person's hot list, it will be easier to find your site at a later date.
For example, instead of using <TITLE> Netcor </TITLE> as the title of NetCor's home page, <TITLE> Netcor: Training Solutions</TITLE> would be much more descriptive. It would also place greater emphasis or relevancy on "Training Solutions" when calculating keywords.
2. Descriptive Page Text Search engines assign greater relevancy to text located at the top of a page than to text located in the middle or at the bottom of the page. The search engines assume that web page authors will present their most important information first. If your page has a main graphic at the top, you should place some descriptive text either underneath or beside the image. The search engines will index this text and assign it a high level of relevancy.
3. Use <META> tags that allow you to provide even more detail about your Web pages and thereby gain greater control over how your pages are indexed. Not all search engines make use of <META> tags, but adding these tags to your pages will make them more accessible to the search engines that do.
<META> tag codes are inserted within the <HEAD>--- --- <HEAD> tag. The basic syntax is:
<META name="description" content="a training center located in Calgary">
This will control what appears as the summary of your Web page and will be displayed after the title of your document in the index listing. The content of the description should clearly convey what one can expect to find when linking to your site.
<META name="keywords" content="training, computers, comptures, internet, Calgary, Tom is a cute guy">
This will allow you to provide extra information about your page to the search engines without it being visible to the reader.
While search engines do take these keywords into account when indexing your page, they are still going to index the entire contents of your page, as many sites do not include <META> tags. Include keywords that will not necessarily be derived when a robot visits your site. In other words, "computers" and "internet" need not be included in your list of keywords as it is part of your<TITLE>. Robots index both the description and keyword <META> tag contents as searchable words.
Hence, your site will come up in a search if someone typed in "computers" or "internet" from your description. One way to maximize the usefulness of keywords is to incorporate singular and plural cases of words as well as active and passive verbs. For example, "computer", "computers", and "computing" will yield similar but somewhat varying results in a search.
Do not, however, excessively repeat keywords in a keyword <META> tag as search engines may penalize you for this.
Sites using frames:
The main HTML file contains the <FRAMESET> tags, but fails to provide robots with any real useful information for selecting a Web site's abstract. Therefore you should include a description summarizing the contents of the frames on your page with <META> tags.
4. Use ALT tags especially if your site contains multiple photos or graphic-image maps at the top of your home page. Some search engines will take into account the text within an ALT tag when creating your site's description and keywords. In addition, you will be greatly appreciated by all people who visit your site with their Auto Load Images option turned off or by those who prefer to use character browsers.
ALT tags are placed after an image file and generally look like the following:
<img src="sirtomax.jpg" alt="Sir Tom : Website Trainer, cute guy" >
5. If your site utilizes frames, you should be aware that search engines treat frames as if they are links within your main page. As a result the engines will review and index your main page and, at a later date, return to index each individual frame just as it will return to index all other internal links within your web site. Therefore, in order to have your main page (typically titled index.html or default.htm) indexed accurately and efficiently, we recommend that you add some descriptive text between the <noframes> and </noframes> tags of the HTML source coding of your main page.
The noframes tags are usually placed below your frame set information. The frame set information is designated by <frameset> and </frameset>. This text should include your most important keywords and keyword phrases. Adding this text will provide the search engines with content from which to derive keywords for indexing. After this change has been made to your Web site, the page itself will appear exactly the same to anyone using a browser that supports frames. However, users of browsers that do not support frames (i.e. Netscape 1.0 or lower) will now be able to successfully view your home page.