"When a spider comes to your site, you will not be judged on your web design proficiency - you will be judged on your coding proficiency."

Eric Martin, a search engine optimization consultant, shares some of his knowledge in this introduction to SEO.

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SEO - Search Engine Optimization

Think Like A Robot

When a spider comes to your site, you will not be judged on your web design proficiency - you will be judged on your coding proficiency. And the more code bloat, the more disappointed the spider will be. Of course there is a happy medium. If you use drop-down menus or JavaScript rollovers, make sure to include a text link to as many of your pages as possible, and also try to end your pages with a footer navigation in text links. Even better, make a site map, and place a text link on your front page to it. Search engine spiders tend to locate and use site maps to index every page on a site. This is also why it is a good idea to update your site map on a regular basis.

One Step At A Time

The best technique for optimizing a site is to focus on 3-6 keywords that reflect the content of an individual web page and to use these keywords in the Title Tag, the Description Tag, the Keyword Tag, and to treat each page as a separate project.


  • Focus on 3-6 keywords.
  • Including keywords that do not appear in copy is useless and frowned upon and can sometimes lead to a Spam Flag and even blacklisting.
  • Use the longer or plural version of a keyword where possible. Word stemming is used by some search engines to return search results that include keywords that extend beyond the original search. If someone searches for the longer version and your page uses only the short version, your page will be excluded from results.


  • Focus on 3-6 keywords.
  • Your description tag should include the keywords in a natural flowing, natural sounding phrase.
  • Be informative, be objective, be concise.
  • Check the first couple of lines of the first paragraph on your page to see if this would be appropriate to be used as a description of your page. Many search engines utilize the first couple of sentences of the body text as the search results description, instead of the contents of the META DESCRIPTION tag.


  • Go through the web site page by page. Look at the content.
  • Look at the top 3-6 keywords and make phrases from them.
  • Name the pages according to your target words.

REMEMBER - name EACH PAGE with a UNIQUE TITLE, and make sure that this title reflects your keyword phrases for the page content.

This is the one place where you can really affect your ranking in the search engines. The reason is simple. Search engines rightly assume that the title tag will hold the most vital keywords for your page and your site. After using the title tag to reflect content and theme, try and add a call to action, as there will be many entries on the search engine results page, and a call to action can help someone decide that your site is the one they want to visit. For example, instead of "Great GoLive Site - The Best GoLive Site On The Web" it would be better to use a title like this: "GoLive Resources - Get Free Tips, Tricks & Actions." The "get free" is the call to action and will help them determine that this is a resource site which features free files.

Can This Be Automated?

No. You should not copy and paste your work across the site. In effect you would be telling the spider that you have only one thing to offer over and over again. You must treat each page as a separate and unique keyword project that needs very focused attention.

More Information

There is an enormous amount to learn about search engine optimization, and there is not enough room to cover all that here. But follow this simple guideline and you will be ranked higher for your terms, because you are presenting your site properly to the search engines.

If you are interested in going further with SEO (search engine optimization) make sure to visit the following sites:

High Rankings Forum

I Help You Forums

Search Engine Watch

Eric Martin is the director of Futura Studios, a website design and development company in Montreal, Canada that specializes in search engine optimization. Futura Studios is a proud member of the SEO Consultants Directory - a select group of search engine optimization consultants.

Eric Martin is also the man behind the golive911 site, a great GoLive resource!