There are some search engine optimizations rules (the rules search engines use to figure out when and where your website is supposed to show up after someone types in relative keywords) that are probably not going to change.
Changes like the new rules for the Google search algorithm are inevitable. Now we have geotagging, search engines boasting that they are decision engines, and are connected to more people (and their opinions) than ever before.
This is the golden opportunity to share your information. However, this also means it will be easier for good content to get lost in the shuffle.
Here are some SEO rules that are foundational and certain to keep your site high in the search results (and easier to navigate for your visitors):
- More links to your website from other well-structures websites will equate to a better search result ranking. The 2011 way to get links to your website will largely be done by writing great content and then hoping it is shared virally via Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Linked IN, and then whatever other smart social network service they can come up with that will consolidate all if them.
- The older a website is and the longer a website is registered for is very important. (I registered darkbluesun.com in 2003 and it doesn’t expire until 2015 – So, I won’t have to mess with this one for my redesign.) Why would they want to make a site that is going to expire in less than a year a priority to index?
- The links that you have to other websites are also very important. Broken links prove that your site is unkempt. My blog is older, so some of the links that I shared have become obsolete and some of the websites that were posted with visitors comments are also broken.
- Google’s Webmaster Tools will show you most of your internal and external broken links. However, it does miss some especially the ones included in the comments. So what else can I do?
- There’s a program called Xenu Link Sleuth that I downloaded a while back. It will run a report for you on your entire website that will show all of the links that are broken, working, or redirected. It does other nifty things too.
For more info on this detailed (older still) blog post from seomoz.com: Xenu’s Link Sleuth – More Than Just A Broken Links Finder it gives a lot of good detail on what this program can do.
- More quality content on your website also gets attention. The more quality content, the better chances you’ll have to get the search engines like Bing! and Google to trust your website as a reliable source.
Next week I will share SEO rules for all of your written content keeping good anchor text for links, tags, labels, and categories. For now, I am going to continue cleaning up broken links and minor fixes on the site this week.
Update 4/17/2012 – I found another very good article about SEO from the site “Say Notes” called What Web Designers Need to Know About SEO