Beautiful Website, Invisible on Search Engines -- Why?

Ralph_wilsonDr. Ralph Wilson identified 7 reasons that many Web sites don't turn up in search engine results.  It's the result of using old-fashioned technology and the wrong cutting-edge technology --ignorantly, at the same time.  In a nutshell, he examined the site of a large church in a city of 5,000 and found these flaws:

  1. The homepage has a "splash page" made up of a single GIF image and no text content that is spider food for search engine spiders.  [I see this a lot on professional firm sites too.]
  2. The navigation system on the splash page is an image map. It contains no text links on the homepage, but since search engines can't read image maps, the search engine is stopped in its tracks. It has nowhere to go and nothing to index.   
  3. The site is built using HTML frames, a technique that was the rage of website developers in the 1990s, now rather widely denounced for its search engine unfriendliness.   
  4. The homepage within the frame system contained no text content, just a title and a frame system.   
  5. NOFRAMES tags stopped search engine spiders. Because this was the main frameset page that contained no content or navigation links whatsoever, the search engine spiders are stopped again. They have no URLs to go to, no links. Nothing.
  6. The interior webpage URLs all point to the website developer's domain, such as:
  7. None of the interior webpages can be bookmarked or linked to. Not only are search engines prevented from entering, but humans can't link to parts of the site that interests them.

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alun john - January 11, 2006 4:42 PM

Interesting article Larry. I still find it amazing that after all these years people are are still badly constructin website using some, or all, of the nasties listed by Wilson Web. It is amazing the number of times I have had to intervene on a client's behalf and tell 'so-called' professional web developers to create more straightforward, less gimmicky sites.

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