Search Engine Optimization

semiautomatix

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I would like to know from all you web developers out there: I do mostly internal portals and web based systems. I am occasionally asked to do public websites and content management systems.

With regards to Search Engine Optimization, something not used internally, what is the best way to approach SEO? Should I use a third party for this aspect, or can it be done internally? If I choose to do it myself does anyone have an tips and tricks, or a decent tutorial of sorts that they would recommend?

Thanks!
 

FarligOpptreden

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I'm waiting for Mr. SEO (aka Raithlin) to come barging in... :p

There are many things to consider though, friendly URLs, proper page meta tags, informative titles for each page, ensuring that each link on the site is "crawlable" (i.e. not solely depending on javascript to transfer the page) and, probably most important of all - properly structured content on the pages.

There are many approaches to implementing SEO and you can do it yourself. Don't be fooled by many of these so-called web "experts" punting SEO to be the next best thing and being a highly specialized field with ridiculous prices to boot.
 
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zamrg

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Oct 19, 2005
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I completely agree with the above advice, there's no need to hire a SEO specialist or one of those companies to do what you can do yourself.

I don't have much more advice to add, just make sure you got clean cut code which adheres to xhtml standards. I would highly recommend a list approach to the site's navigation as it helps search engines analyse the different pages on your site and navigate successfully.

I don't think search engines pay much or any attention these days to meta tags, but it can't hurt putting them in.
 

semiautomatix

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Thanks for the replies!

Well for my next project I will be using Joomla or the like, so there should be some adherence to standards - plus there should be a tree of sorts, which would list the navigation. Time to read up on SOE and do what I can.
 

guest2013-1

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Thanks for the replies!

Well for my next project I will be using Joomla or the like, so there should be some adherence to standards - plus there should be a tree of sorts, which would list the navigation. Time to read up on SOE and do what I can.

If I may suggest using Wordpress instead of Joomla!. Wordpress has a very powerful following already with loads of plugins doing SEO for you out of the box without you having to think about it. Very extendable and customizing it to suit your clients needs including themes would be enough to get them running very cheaply.

I'm currently busy doing my own CMS system because I'm stripping away all the nice-to-have's and starting from a shell. Doing url rewriting etc but yea.... nice out of the box customizable theme based popular tool: Wordpress CMS ;)
 

Raithlin

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I would like to know from all you web developers out there: I do mostly internal portals and web based systems. I am occasionally asked to do public websites and content management systems.

With regards to Search Engine Optimization, something not used internally, what is the best way to approach SEO? Should I use a third party for this aspect, or can it be done internally? If I choose to do it myself does anyone have an tips and tricks, or a decent tutorial of sorts that they would recommend?

Thanks!

I'm waiting for Mr. SEO (aka Raithlin) to come barging in... :p
:p It's nice to be recognised...

What they said. SEO is a tricky field, but one that if done correctly [EDIT: There is no correct way] has a good effect on your traffic. I would start by Googling SEO, finding a few sites (I'll list a few for you from my RSS feeds), and reading. Plenty of reading. But yeah, do it yourself once you get the hang of it. It works best when integrated into the design/development process.

High Rankings Advisor
Pandia Search Central - look for the tutorial links on the right
SEO TAGG

If I may suggest using Wordpress instead of Joomla!. Wordpress has a very powerful following already with loads of plugins doing SEO for you out of the box without you having to think about it. Very extendable and customizing it to suit your clients needs including themes would be enough to get them running very cheaply.

I'm currently busy doing my own CMS system because I'm stripping away all the nice-to-have's and starting from a shell. Doing url rewriting etc but yea.... nice out of the box customizable theme based popular tool: Wordpress CMS ;)
Have you tried Drupal? With (I think) 3 modules you have an awesome SEO-centric CMS - well worth looking at too.
 

FarligOpptreden

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I like getting into the nitty-gritty of it all and doing everything on my own, much like what Acid is doing now. I've got several assemblies implementing useful features for me already, like URL-rewriting, photo scaling / cropping, galleries, etc... It's then just a case of referencing the assembly and occasionally registering an HTTP module in the Web.Config file. One day I'm going to have my own mighty CMS package - watch out for Farlig CMS! ;)
 

Raithlin

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I like getting into the nitty-gritty of it all and doing everything on my own, much like what Acid is doing now. I've got several assemblies implementing useful features for me already, like URL-rewriting, photo scaling / cropping, galleries, etc... It's then just a case of referencing the assembly and occasionally registering an HTTP module in the Web.Config file. One day I'm going to have my own mighty CMS package - watch out for Farlig CMS! ;)
Hey, that sounds good. Link? ;)

@Acid: How easy is it to create a Portal out of WordPress? I have one client that I want to move to a dynamic solution, and I think Drupal/Joomla is the best fit. I looked at WP, but it seems more suited to a blogging site than a portal.
 

Necuno

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SOE; has become quite the science, i remember when it only used to be describing your site with just some keywords when adding it to a search engine....
 

guest2013-1

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Hey, that sounds good. Link? ;)

@Acid: How easy is it to create a Portal out of WordPress? I have one client that I want to move to a dynamic solution, and I think Drupal/Joomla is the best fit. I looked at WP, but it seems more suited to a blogging site than a portal.

Wordpress is very powerful and can be used as more than just a blogging engine.
 

davemc

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From my research, if you're going to be doing a lot of customisation, then Drupal is better then WordPress because it is relatively easy to learn. But, wordpress' existing features are superb, whereas Drupal's existing features are adequate but flexible to the extreme.

P.S. It took me an entire freaking month to get the hang of coding in PHP for Drupal, so, it's not a piece of cake, but, once you get the hang of it, it is a cakewalk.

Joomla is horrible. It looks good but fails if you even think of attempting anything non-standard.
 

guest2013-1

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From my research, if you're going to be doing a lot of customisation, then Drupal is better then WordPress because it is relatively easy to learn. But, wordpress' existing features are superb, whereas Drupal's existing features are adequate but flexible to the extreme.

P.S. It took me an entire freaking month to get the hang of coding in PHP for Drupal, so, it's not a piece of cake, but, once you get the hang of it, it is a cakewalk.

Joomla is horrible. It looks good but fails if you even think of attempting anything non-standard.

Wordpress IMO is easier. Coming from a VB background, I found coding and getting stuff done in wordpress to be piss easy. Perhaps it's programming experience talking or perhaps the guys at wordpress just knew wtf they were doing :D

Customizations was easy enough to do and once you understand the simple theme concept and the commands available to you via the wordpress "api" and how easy it is to do stuff you're set. Bet you it'll take you a week.
 

semiautomatix

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I have looked at WordPress, it does seem a bit to "bloggy" for what I am attempting.

I need to put in what is essentially a news site (where blog works fine) with some ecommerce aspects, tour scheduling, etc, etc.

I'm not sure whether Wordpress is capable of achieving this.
 

davemc

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Wordpress IMO is easier. Coming from a VB background, I found coding and getting stuff done in wordpress to be piss easy. Perhaps it's programming experience talking or perhaps the guys at wordpress just knew wtf they were doing :D

Customizations was easy enough to do and once you understand the simple theme concept and the commands available to you via the wordpress "api" and how easy it is to do stuff you're set. Bet you it'll take you a week.
Thanks AcidRaZor, interesting.
 

Raithlin

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Yeah, some day when I retire and have time on my hands I'll take a look, thx. Until then, I'll stick with what I know (or am already learning). ;)
 

guest2013-1

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I have looked at WordPress, it does seem a bit to "bloggy" for what I am attempting.

I need to put in what is essentially a news site (where blog works fine) with some ecommerce aspects, tour scheduling, etc, etc.

I'm not sure whether Wordpress is capable of achieving this.

Wordpress is. Try googling for themes or something. It can do pretty awesome stuff which doesn't look too bloggy at all.

But I'm not trying to convince you into something. Stick with what you know I guess :D
 
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