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Understanding Content – What is Content?

Content is most often thought of as the indexable text on a page. To check for what is indexable on your page you can try highlighting all of the text and copying it into a text file. It might surprise you what text you have on a page. Another method is to check Google’s cache. To do so type cache:www.yourwebsite.com/yourpage.html into the search. It will show you the cached copy of your page, then click the text only version to see what content was actually indexed.

Below are some useful explanations that will help you to understand content and how it is part of your site.

Text Content

Head content: Head content all the text at the top of your page. It should contain things like your business’s phone #, address, name, etc. The head content is usually the same throughout a web site. The head content for the search engines often determines your site’s theme and is weighted heavily. So it is a good place to include your most important keywords.

Navigational content: When navigation is done as text links, it is indexable. Navigational content can appear at top (main navigation), side (side navigation), bottom (footer links), or in the body content area. Links hold a lot of value for the search engines and they can be used to reinforce the keywords you wish to target.

Body content: Body content appears in the middle of your site’s pages. This is usually the content that makes the individual pages unique from each other. The body content usually holds the majority of a page’s content and it what helps the search engines to determine what the page is all about. Links embedded within body content are given extra value, so it is a good place to add your internal cross links.

Footer Content: Footer content is the stuff at the bottom of your site pages. It is usually where your copyright and footer links appear. It is also good to put your address and local phone# this helps both the visitor to your site and helps with Google places rankings.

Non Text Content

Images: Images are all of the graphics that appear on your pages. This even means spacer images, buttons, and backgrounds. These images can be indexed and can actually drive traffic to your site via Google’s image search. To get the most out of your images make sure you use keywords in the file names and include alt-tags in the code.

Videos: Videos follow similar rules to images and can drive traffic to your site via Google video search. Videos have the added advance of helping with your web site’s conversion rates. To get even more boost from your videos having them feed from Youtube. Youtube can drive traffic to your site and seems to give some ranking boost.

Alternative tags: Alt tags or alternative tags were originally used for browsers that couldn’t see images where the alternative text would be shown in place of the image. They are important for optimizing for not only search engine rankings but are used heavily by for image search rankings.

Meta tags: Meta tags are pieces of code at the beginning of a page that define it to other coders and search engines alike. Meta keywords has little or no value but formerly held sway with the search engine. The description tag is used by the search engines to something form the description shown within the search results. Having the description tag optimized can mean greater clicks to your site if your description is more appealing to the searcher. The title tag currently holds a lot of weight with the search engines it is used in the search result link text.

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