If you're holding out for universal popularity, I'm
afraid you will be in this cabin for a very long time.
J. K. Rowling, 1965 -
Harry Potter and the
Goblet of Fire
Study skills series
Making your website popular
Search engine optimization (SEO)
Position & optimize your web site traffic
engines & directories
Identify your audience
Is your audience
regional? national? international? professional? content driven?
Keep perspective on developing your website:
not competing with Microsoft, the United Nations, or the Library of
Review your content
What in your content is valuable
to your audience?
- create intuitive and obvious navigation; enable multiple
topical "entry points"
- clearly present current content
- published research and items of interest
- establish credibility with the credentials of authors and
- include a few items of personal interest (humanize)
- delete gimmicks or gratuitous technology or distracting
graphics that have no purpose to that of the website
- facilitate contacts and feedback:
make it simple!
Structure your content
for convenient and intuitive
navigation and access
Your audience should easily find what they are looking for
web site of links has little value compared to search engines and
Positioning your web site for search engines, directories,
Do not promote a site that is not well-developed
First (bad) impressions will affect later positioning.
Compare your site to similar
Determine critical keywords/search terms
- Prioritize keyword density
proactively use keywords in your home page content;
it reflects the content
Metatags are located in the HTML source code
of a web page that detail administrative information about a web
site/page. Some information is also scanned by portals, directories,
and search engines and listed in the web site's description,
as < title > and < description >
- Title metatag
Displayed in the top line of a
browser, and often duplicated in listings of search engines, etc.
- Description metatag:
well-reflective of content; duplicated in Alta Vista's listings of
Should be consistent for all submissions:
directories, search engines, portals
Should be descriptive, not
hyped: The Open Directory Project (ODP) rejects sites with
- Keyword metatag:
Generally obsolete but still
does not index the metatag for "keywords"
- Add metadata to images
with the < alt > tag and
- For an excellent illustration of the central role the ODP
go to Bruce Clay, Inc. "Search
Engine Relationship Chart"
Spiders/crawls the Web and ODP for web sites
(submitting a site not necessary)
Increases the rank of your
website by the number and quality (keywords!) of links to it
Promoting your site
- Is the Web site incorporated consistently into all marketing
Is the URL/address prominent in all print and media
- Are there professional e-newsletters, listservs, blogs, etc.
where the site can be promoted or referenced?
- Do professional organizations list member Web sites?
- Are you a part of any Webrings?
(An Internet site that
links web sites that have the same theme)
- Do you encourage your staff, supporters and enthusiasts to
refer to the site in publications, speeches, etc.?
- Do you monitor traffic on the site, especially its most
popular pages for opportune developments?
- Have you reviewed all search engines, portals, directories for
- Do you submit your site for awards?
and post the kudos?
- Do you exchange links with appropriate entities?
- Are there associated resources where you can promote your
Website: an electronic newsletter, users group, events alert,