Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
Help your target audiences
Each website has two target audiences: the primary audience is the end-user, while the secondary
audience consists of the directory editors and search engine spiders. Your goal in search engine
optimization is to receive regular traffic over time from both the search engines and the directories.
Search engines do three things: they index text, follow links, and measure popularity. Of these,
the measure of popularity is the factor most influenced by end-users.
Visible text
Search engines see text, so if you have to perform any kind of action to view text then almost
certainly the search engine will not be able to see it. ALT text is not visible, so it's not as
important to the search engines as visible text. However, you must include your keyword phrase
in your ALT text. ALT tags can be used as text in logos, image maps, navigation elements, Flash
movies, and photos. ALT text in a clear gif is considered spamming. You should always put
width and height on image maps so the browser knows the size of the graphic; by doing this you
are speeding up the process of having some content appear quickly on screen in particular text.
The graphics will then follow.
Cascading style sheets
Cascading style sheets (CSS) are used to control web page design parameters, such as margins,
font/typeface, link appearance, colours, and placement. CSS massively decrease download time,
but style sheets themselves have no effect on the search engines. You should always make use of
a robots exclusion file on sections of your site that the search engines have no interest in, such
as your style sheets, CGI-BIN, and any pages under construction, to keep them from getting
indexed. All search engines support this protocol - after all, the last thing you want is to drive
traffic to your site and then present searchers with an incomplete landing page. There is always
a period when you have kicked off your search optimization strategy but not quite finished the
site build, and this is when these anomalies occur. The best thing you can do is present those
pages that are finished and block the pages that are still work in progress.
META tags
The most valuable feature offered by META tags is the ability to control web pages for both
searching and administration. META tags will help keep your pages more up to date, make them
easier to find, and even stop them from becoming framed, but they have never been a guaranteed
way to gain a top ranking on crawler-based search engines. META tags can also help you provide
keywords and descriptions on pages that for various reasons lack text - maybe because of image
maps, large images, splash pages and frames pages. They might also boost your page's relevancy.
Simply including a META tag is not a guarantee that your page will suddenly leap to the top of
every search engine listing. They are useful tools, but not a magic solution. They can be used
to identify the creator of a page, its HTML specs, the keywords and description of the page,
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