Site Architecture SEO Factors

Image courtesy of digitalart from FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of digitalart from FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Search engines are your biggest chance of getting free traffic. They present your site to your target audience. What more could you ask for? Of course, anything free doesn’t come easy. Search engine optimization (SEO) is important to the success of your online business. You need to design and run your site according to SEO factors to ensure you are receiving the most amount of traffic you can from search engines. The following are some of the factors you need to keep in mind as you are seeking ways to make it more attractive to the search engine bots (what crawls your site to know who to show your site’s information to).

Crawlability

Crawlability is the ability for the search engine to crawl your site. The easier your site is to crawl, the more of your pages will be indexed and shown to your target audience. With so many websites online today, these search engine bots are fast. They don’t deal with any hang ups. They simply move to the next site. Each site has a time or amount of pages that the search engine can crawl. That’s usually determined by the authority of the site. It is important that you ensure you are giving the search engine bot as much as possible in as little time as possible. That’s why you need to make sure all of your pages are functioning correctly (no 404s) and you don’t have any Javascript or Flash hiding text from the bot.

It’s a good idea that you have a sitemap (Robot.txt file). It should be in HTML and XML form. This will basically give the search engine bot a road map, so it doesn’t miss anything you really want it to find and file in its massive rolodex.

Canonicalization

If you’re in eCommerce, you have to pay attention to this more. It’s likely you have many different URLs for the same product or service. This is a natural occurrence with most eCommerce programs. While it makes sense for your site, it doesn’t to search engines. What the search engine bot sees is the same page repeatedly. This confuses the bot and makes it difficult for it to know which site to show to your target audience. This is not good for your site because as mentioned before, search engines don’t like hang ups.

You can solve this problem on your site by using 301 redirects, rel-canonical tags, and working with URL parameters and pagination. That way you are telling search engines exactly which page should be listed on search engine results pages out of all the other pages created about the same product or service.

Speed

People are impatient and Google knows that, so it will recommend faster sites first. You should always be working on increasing the speed of your site. With improved speed comes improved ranking. It also improves the number of indexed pages because the search engine bot can crawl your site faster.

There’s probably a lot of work to do on your site now. Don’t get stressed about it. This is work you always need to be doing. The architecture of your site needs to be adjusted as Google refines its algorithm to give Internet users exactly what they want.

What have you done to improve the architecture of your site? Leave a comment below with your tips or questions.

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