Posts Tagged ‘meta tags’

Google’s SEO Starter Guide – Webmaster Tools

March 26th, 2010

 

Make Use of Free Webmaster Tools

 

 

 

Major search engines, including Google, provide free tools for webmasters. Google’s Webmaster Tools help webmasters better control how Google interacts with their websites and get useful information from Google about their site. Using Webmaster Tools won’t help your site get preferential treatment; however, it can help you identify issues that, if addressed, can help your site perform better in search results. With the service, webmasters can:

 

• see which parts of a site Googlebot had problems crawling
• upload an XML Sitemap file
analyze and generate robots.txt files
remove URLs already crawled by Googlebot
specify the preferred domain
identify issues with title and description meta tags
• understand the top searches used to reach a site
• get a glimpse at how Googlebot sees pages
remove unwanted sitelinks that Google may use in results
receive notification of quality guideline violations and file for a site reconsideration

 

Yahoo! (Yahoo! Site Explorer) and Microsoft (Live Search Webmaster Tools) also offer free tools for webmasters.

 

Google’s SEO Starter Guide – Meta Tag

March 18th, 2010

 

Make Use of the “Description” Meta Tag

 

 

 

A page’s description meta tag gives Google and other search engines a summary of what the page is about. Whereas a page’s title may be a few words or a phrase, a page’s description meta tag might be a sentence or two or a short paragraph. Google Webmaster Tools provides a handy content analysis section that’ll tell you about any description meta tags that are either too short, long, or duplicated too many times (the same information is also shown for tags). Like the <title> tag, the description meta tag is placed within the <head> tag of your HTML document. </p> <p> </p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td style="text-align: left;"> <p> </p> <p> <center><br /> <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide8.jpg"><img src="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide8-300x122.jpg" alt="SEO Guide Meta Tags1" title="seo-guide8" width="300" height="122" class="size-medium wp-image-182" /><br /> </a><br /> </center> </p> <p> <em><br /> The beginning of the description meta tag for our homepage, which gives a brief overview of the site’s offerings<br /> </em> </p> <p> </p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td style="text-align: left;"> <p> </p> <p> Description meta tags are important because Google might use them as snippets for your pages. Note that we say “might” because Google may choose to use a relevant section of your page’s visible text if it does a good job of matching up with a user’s query. Alternatively, Google might use your site’s description in the <a href="http://www.dmoz.org/">Open Directory Project</a> if your site is listed there (learn how to <a href="http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?answer=35264">prevent search engines from displaying ODP data</a>). Adding description meta tags to each of your pages is always a good practice in case Google cannot find a good selection of text to use in the snippet. The Webmaster Central Blog has an informative post on <a href="http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2007/09/improve-snippets-with-meta-description.html">improving snippets with better description meta tags</a>. </p> <p> Snippets appear under a page’s title and above a page’s URL in a search result. </p> <p> </p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td style="text-align: left;"> <p> </p> <p> <center><br /> <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide9.jpg"><img src="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide9-300x56.jpg" alt="SEO Guide Meta Tags2" title="seo-guide9" width="300" height="56" class="size-medium wp-image-183" /><br /> </a><br /> </center> </p> <p> <em><br /> A user performs the query [baseball cards]<br /> </em> </p> <p> </p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td style="text-align: left;"> <p> </p> <p> <center><br /> <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide10.jpg"><img src="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide10-300x50.jpg" alt="SEO Guide meta Tags3" title="seo-guide10" width="300" height="50" class="size-medium wp-image-184" /><br /> </a><br /> </center> </p> <p> <em><br /> Our homepage appears as a result, with part of its description meta tag used as the snippet<br /> </em> </p> <p> </p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td style="text-align: left;"> <p> </p> <p> Words in the snippet are bolded when they appear in the user’s query. This gives the user clues about whether the content on the page matches with what he or she is looking for. Below is another example, this time showing a snippet from a description meta tag on a deeper page (which ideally has its own unique description meta tag) containing an article. </p> <p> </p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td style="text-align: left;"> <p> </p> <p> <center><br /> <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide11.jpg"><img src="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide11-300x52.jpg" alt="SEO Guide Meta Tags4" title="seo-guide11" width="300" height="52" class="size-medium wp-image-185" /><br /> </a><br /> </center> </p> <p> <em><br /> A user performs the query [rarest baseball cards]<br /> </em> </p> <p> </p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td style="text-align: left;"> <p> </p> <p> <center><br /> <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide12.jpg"><img src="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/seo-guide12-300x71.jpg" alt="SEO Guide Meta Tags5" title="seo-guide12" width="300" height="71" class="size-medium wp-image-186" /><br /> </a><br /> </center> </p> <p> <em><br /> One of our deeper pages, with its unique description meta tag used as the snippet, appears as a result<br /> </em> </p> <p> </p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td style="text-align: left;"> <p> </p> <p> <strong>Good practices for description meta tags</strong> </p> <p></p> <p> </p> <p></p> <p> • Accurately summarize the page’s content – Write a description that would both inform and interest users if they saw your description meta tag as a snippet in a search result.<br /> Avoid:<br /> •• writing a description meta tag that has no relation to the content on the page<br /> •• using generic descriptions like “This is a webpage” or “Page about baseball cards”<br /> •• filling the description with only keywords<br /> •• copy and pasting the entire content of the document into the description meta tag</p> <p> • Use unique descriptions for each page – Having a different description meta tag for each page helps both users and Google, especially in searches where users may bring up multiple pages on your domain (e.g. searches using the <a href="http://www.brianwhite.org/2007/04/27/google-site-operator-an-ode-to-thee/">site: operator</a>). If your site has thousands or even millions of pages, hand-crafting description meta tags probably isn’t feasible. In this case, you could automatically generate description meta tags based on<br /> each page’s content.<br /> Avoid:<br /> •• using a single description meta tag across all of your site’s pages or a large group of pages </p> <p> </p> <p> </p> </td> </tr> </table> </div> <div class="post-meta"> <div class="post-meta-b"> <div class="cl"> </div> <div class="left"> <p>Posted in <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/category/computer-stuff/seo-stuff" title="View all posts in SEO Widgets" rel="category tag">SEO Widgets</a></p> <p>Tags: <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/tag/google-search" rel="tag">google search</a>, <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/tag/meta-tags" rel="tag">meta tags</a>, <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/tag/search-engine" rel="tag">search engine</a>, <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/tag/seo" rel="tag">seo</a></p> </div> <div class="right"> <p><a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/googles-seo-starter-guide-meta-tag-181#respond" title="Comment on Google’s SEO Starter Guide – Meta Tag">0 Comments</a></p> <!-- <p></p> --> </div> <div class="cl"> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="page-nav"> <div class="alignleft"></div> <div class="alignright"></div> </div> </div> <div id="sidebar" role="complementary"> <ul> <li id="text-2" class="widget widget_text"> <div class="textwidget"><center> <p> </p> <p> <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/friends.jpg"><img src="http://www.geekwidget.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/friends-150x150.jpg" alt="Friends" title="friends" width="150" height="150" class="size-thumbnail wp-image-119" /> </a> </p> <p> <a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/image-gallery-99">Image Galery</a> </p> <p> </p> </center></div> </li><li id="search-3" class="widget widget_search"><h2 class="widgettitle">Search Widgets</h2><form role="search" method="get" id="searchform" class="searchform" action="http://www.geekwidget.com/"> <div> <label class="screen-reader-text" for="s">Search for:</label> <input type="text" value="" name="s" id="s" /> <input type="submit" id="searchsubmit" value="Search" /> </div> </form></li><li id="categories-2" class="widget widget_categories"><h2 class="widgettitle">Widget Groups</h2> <ul> <li class="cat-item cat-item-6"><a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/category/cars" title="Hiho, Silver... away!">Car Widgets</a> </li> <li class="cat-item cat-item-11"><a href="http://www.geekwidget.com/category/computer-stuff" title="Press any key to continue... 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