Website Links - Building Site Awareness

May 30th, 2009

Hyperlinks, or “links” as they are commonly known, are pathways from one website to another. The Internet was built on this series of interconnections between sites. Links are seen on virtually every page on the Internet, and when clicked by the mouse they bring the Internet surfer to another page, either on the same website, or to another website.

A link from your page at “mypage.htm” pointing to another page on another website or domain is called an outgoing or – to be more precise – an outbound link; the link leads out of your page. When you link to another page of your own site, this link is outbound too, relative to the page on which it is placed.

Alternatively, when a page out in the Web or within your website links to your “mypage.htm”, this link is incoming, or inbound link , for “mypage”.

A “reciprocal” or “backwards” link contains both inbound and outbound links to the same two websites.

Links are important for helping human users find interesting, informative and useful content on the Internet, and they have special value to search engines like Google and Yahoo!. Search engines consider the number of links, age of link, and link quality when applying ranking algorithms to pages. They follow a simple logic: the more incoming links a Web page receives, the more other pages and websites have cast their “votes” for this Web page by considering it an interesting resource. Thus, this page should be ranked higher.

Remember that search engines rank pages, not sites. Thus, if the home page of a site is not considered interesting by other webmasters it will have few inbound links to it from other sites. On the other hand, a different page on the same site contains interesting facts or information and could have many inbound links from other sites.

While link quantity is important, quality is even more important. Search engine algorithms are intentionally built to give inbound links more value than others. Simple links are not given the same weight as links with the following advantages:

  • Links from pages deemed to be more relevant, in terms of topic and theme;
  • Links labeled with more keyword rich anchor text and surrounded by relevant descriptions;
  • Links from pages with a higher Google PageRank;
  • Links that originate from content pages rather than from “links pages” and free-for-all link catalogs. However, this doesn’t concern the pages of Web’s most popular directories DMOZ and Yahoo!, as the links from them are considered “expert“.

Inbound links are generally helpful to the site that receives the link, but there are exceptions. Luckily, it is not possibile to get your site banned or excluded from listings if you get a “bad” inbound link from a penalized website; search engines recognize that no one can control who links to their website. Some incoming links, including those from guest books, link farms and free-for-all link pages provide almost no gain in the rankings because they are generally ignored by the search engines.

Becoming involved in any linking scheme solely designed to trick the search engines into providing higher rankings could result in a penalty or even an outright ban. All such schemes should be avoided.

The concept of Link Popularity refers to the number and quality of links inbound to your website pages - the higher the number of links pointing to your page, the higher your link popularity. However, the number itself is not the only factor that determines your site’s importance. The other related factor that determines your site’s importance is Link Quality.

Link quality may be defined as the quality of content in the sites that are linked to yours, as well as the industry relevance to your site. The link anchor text (the actual text of the hyperlink visible to the visitors of the linking site) adds to the link quality if relevant to your content. The number of links on the linking page itself is considered vital by some search engines. The link will not be given much weight if it is placed on a page with thousands of similar links. However, if the page linking to yours has only a few links or a low link-to-content ratio, this is considered a quality link.

A properly written website .html code should be validated by www.w3.org for example, proper use of keywords, titles, density and not contain stop words. Proper written .html code helps improve each page on your website.

A very simple explanation of Websites and how they work.

February 5th, 2009

A Website can be broken down into three pieces!  Obviously a lot more is going on in websites, but this explanation breaks everything down to the simplest way to understand what’s really going on.

So to help make it easy for you to grasp the whole mysterious, complicated thing called a website, here it is.

  1. Every website has a “Main or Home” page. Consider it the “Parent” page.
  2. Any additional web pages for that website are considered a “Child” pages.
  3. All website pages including the Parent page and all Child pages, have their own unique written .html code that makes that page do it’s thing.

That’s it… In a nutshell.  The big thing to understand and keep in mind is this: The .html code written for each page is what contains the majority of information that the various Search Engines (Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc) use to search and index your website. The way the .html is written and what it contains, and how much of what’s included in the .html code is found, is what the search engines used to determine how and when your site is included in searches.

That’s a website broken down into the simplest explanation. At Tidepool Graphics, I strive to design websites that achieves two things, first is to design a fantastic looking website. Secondly and more importantly write the .html code so the website is ranked as high as possible by the various search engines.

It’s great to have a beutiful looking website, but if the .html code is poorly written, that website will not show up in the search engines search list,  which means that no one will visit that site from the search engines. So having a beutiful looking site is meaningless if it is never visited.

Another thing to mention. Having a websites  .html code written properly, and having the .html code “Validated” by The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is a huge acheivment and advantage for that website.

What  does that mean?  By having your websites .html code “Validated” your .html code is compliant to W3C standards, it was written properly, sort of like getting an “A” on a English term paper. Search engines view validated websites very favorably and take into condsieration in ranking that site.

All of the websites I design are “Validated” and carry the W3C validation Icon badge on the bottom of the Home page.

To get a better idea as to the Parent - Child website explaination, look at the sitemap page I wrote for perfectly Petals, this should help you visualize what I’m talking about.

http://www.perfectlypetals.com/sitemap.html

I hope this short little post helps you understand a website a little better.

Steven Riese

Hello world!

December 31st, 2008

Welcome to Tidepool Graphics Blog!  This is my first post so be patient, more to come!