Creating a search engine friendly website structure

Creating a good web site structure is crucial for both your visitors and achieving a good rank with the major search engines. Most visitors who visit your site will be visiting for a particular reason. Either they want to find out more information about the products or services that you offer, or alternatively, they may wish to buy a product having carried out some initial research.

Home Pages

The home page is the most important page of a Web site from an SEOstandpoint. If you are only going to optimize one page of your site, both for search engines and potential clients, it should be the home page. Even if your goal is to optimize your entire site, you should devote a good deal of your time and effort to optimizing your home page.

In the search engine indexing process, the home page of a domain receives more weight than its internal pages. The home page is also the one page that will be seen by most of your visitors. Because of this, it is important to list and include your practice areas and other keywords on your home page, as well as provide links to information in your internal pages. The home page must be text rich and not contain extensive graphics, flash or video components. The page must also load quickly, and any JavaScript and style sheets should be placed in external files.

You should never have a splash page if your objective is effective search engine optimization. Most visitors will skip by the splash page, and it may even keep a search engine crawler or spider from indexing your the other Web pages of your site.

A Search Engine and Visitor Friendly Site Map

You should always have a site map that contains links to your web site’s various sections or pages. From an SEO perspective, having a link to your site map on your home page — if not all pages of your Web site — is important. Listing the links to all the major sections and/or pages of your site in one, easy-to-find place makes it much easier for a search engine crawler to grab and index your entire site. From a user-perspective, it is worthwhile having the site map linked on every page so that users can easily go there if they are having problems finding specific information.

Multiple Sub-domains

If you own a particular domain name then you can create an unlimited number of domain names that use the original name as a suffix. Once you register a domain, such as with a registrar, you are free to create as many sub-domains as you wish,  e.g.,

You will still need your system administrator or ISP to set these sub-domains up, and they may charge a setup cost, but there are no domain name registration costs. Each of the default/home pages of these domains will get the same preferential value as your default domain name or home page from search engines. If your Web developer can provide sub-domains for you, it may help increase the rankings of some of your Web pages in search engine indices, without having to purchase additional domains from one of the registries.

Directory Depth and Search Engine Indexing and Rankings 

Directory depth refers to the number of directories in a URL. When your web site content and files are grouped into a directory structure, your URL will reflect this structure (similar to how files are grouped and stored into broad categories in folders in your computer). The deeper you go “down” the directory structure, the more directories your URL will show for a particular file.



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