How Websites Get Good Search Results

Search-friendly website design is critical as customers rely heavily on Google and other search engines to find information and services. Search-friendly design involves laying the groundwork for how website pages are constructed. The main topics need to be tagged in the appropriate places so that search engines can read and index the information accurately.

While a website’s content must have human appeal—’stickiness’ and ‘shareability’—it must also be constructed so search engines can index (read and catalog) it. Further, content creators need features where they can edit key tags to inform search engines on how the content should be categorized and displayed in search results.

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What Gets a Page Accurately Indexed by Search Engines?

Customers go online to search for products and services they’re interested in. How can a company, such as a small local business, land on the coveted first two pages of a search engine results listing?

One key aspect of a site being search-friendly is how its content appears. Search engines and their “web crawlers” must be able to see your content – in a language they recognize. Since basic HTML is the building block of any site, search engines will see parts created in it – therefore, all important information, descriptions, and keywords should be in HTML. Conversely, search engines can’t read Flash or graphics, so the information presented via these methods is simply overlooked by Google and other search engines.

It’s also important to make sure your home page includes links to key pages within the site, as this will help the web crawlers find pages faster.

There are several more accepted and valid ways to help a website get better search results. However, there are also underhanded tricks people may be tempted to try to quickly rank high in search engines, such as stuffing webpages full of keywords or duplicating page content. This is called “Black Hat SEO,” and it’s best avoided! Search engines that catch sites doing this can be banned permanently from their listings, which isn’t worth the risk.

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About The Author

Matthew Harris

Matthew began designing and building websites in 1995, and has since grown Harris Web Works (formerly Medium Well) into a full-service online marketing provider. He continuously adds expertise to become proficient in the evolving world of e-commerce, digital marketing, search engine optimization, mobile web, and more. Client work includes large corporate websites to comprehensive, customized services for small-to-medium sized businesses. He has worked as a designer, programmer, marketer and project manager. Matt is on the Board of Directors of Search Engine Marketing New England (SEMNE), and is a partner at Digital Media Sync in New Haven, CT.