How to be search engine ready...META Tags!

Having your site listed in major search engines is one of the critical parts in the promotion and marketing of your site. In general, 90% of web-surfers use the major search engines to look for websites. The top 30 results that search engines return for search queries will be the sites that will be visited most frequently.

With this in mind, preparing your site for indexing and placement by the top search engines is critical, otherwise your search submission efforts will be futile regardless of how often you promote your site.

Upon submission of your site to the major search engines, your website will be visited and will be indexed. Your page title and META tags, the hidden codes in every HTML page, represent important components in the indexing techniques of those major search engines. The title and META tags must be placed between the <HEAD> and </HEAD> tags. As an example, the HTML of your page should be as follows:


Title of Your Page</TITLE>
<META NAME="Description" CONTENT="
Description of your company">
keyword1 keyword2 keyword3">


This is the portion of your Web page which is viewable within the browser


As a guide, the title and Meta tags should be used as follows:


Example: <TITLE>Value-i-Store (VIS), The Malaysia internet shopping mall</TITLE>

Your site ought to contain at least the title tag. The tag should be placed between the <HEAD> and </HEAD> codes of your page. Ensure that your title is simple and short and provides a quick description in one or two sentences. Be specific and avoid general terms because the content of your title will be reviewed by search engines prior to site indexing and registration. A visitor will only see the TITLE tag when your site is bookmarked or saved to a list of favourite sites.


Example : <META NAME="description" CONTENT="describe your site here">

Again, this tag must be placed between the <HEAD> and </HEAD> codes of your page. Use keywords and key phrases that describe your company, products and services, the industry and or market. Include your company's name within this tag. Most search engines will limit the number of characters within the description tag to about 200.

Example : <META NAME = "keywords" CONTENT = "place, your, site, keywords, here">

Set up a list of keywords with commas to separate each word. Put yourself in the shoes of your potential visitiors and clients. What keywords will they use to search for a site that contains the products, services, and contents that your company offers? Avoid excessive repetition in your list of keywords because some search engines will view it as spamming of their indexes (spamdexing), which will result in low placement or skipping of your site altogether. Using keywords that are not relevant to your site will also sometimes be considered spamdexing. Brainstorm at least 50 words and narrow them down to those that are most relevant. Use plurals because search engines will process both the singular and plural forms. Stick to a limit of less than 1000 characters.

Example : <META NAME="revisit" CONTENT="30 days">

This Meta tag tells the search engine to come back and refresh your listing in a set number of days; in this example, 30 days. A revisit interval of 15 or 30 days is more than sufficient.

Example : <META NAME="robots" CONTENT="index">

This Meta tag tells the search engine to not only list the submitted page, but to go ahead and list all of the webpages at your domain. If the content is changed to "noindex" then only the page submitted will be indexed.

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