Thursday, February 4, 2010
Search Engine Optimizations (SEO) are activities and modifications to make websites which are primarily made for humans, also properly readable by search engines. Off-page activities are mainly focused on link building, while on-page optimizations are small modifications on pages to emphasize target keywords. Search engines do not "see" the layout of the website, their spiders and crawlers only download HTML code and analyze it. Therefore, from this code it should be evident what the page is about. This can be done with few simple tricks.
SEO is always connected with target keywords. These are search phrases that we would like to optimize our website for. Usually we optimize each page for one keyword. This means that we create an article about our target keyword and we emphasize this with header tags, meta description, search engine friendly urls and page title. All those elements should contain our keyword--this will tell also to search engines what this page is about. Of course, the content should also be about this keyword, otherwise SEO can not help. When the page is set up you can focus on off-site optimizations.
There are many ways to create websites. A popular approach is to use open source content management systems like Wordpress and Joomla. Wordpress is the main tool for bloggers, while Joomla is used for a wide variety of websites. Joomla already supports search engine friendly urls but this is limited to the core elements, third party extensions are not supported. An elegant solution for this problem is the sh404sef component which takes care for friendly urls, header tags, and other important elements for SEO.
The main purpose of the sh404sef Joomla component is to rewrite urls but it provides also many SEO and security functions. A very useful feature is insertion of h1 tags around article title and changing of multiple h1 tags into h2. In addition to this sh404SEF has several plugins to automatically create meta tags for some popular components. Alternatively you can create custom page title, meta description and meta keywords for any page, even those that are not directly accessed from the administration interface. With this component you have total control over all important SEO elements of every Joomla page. Most tasks are automated so you need manual intervention only in special cases. Making Joomla pages optimized for search engines is pretty simple even without any additional component, but it is much easier if you use dedicated extension like sh404SEF.