“You can fool a search engine bot, but you can’t fool the user”
Search Engine Bots crawl websites to index pages relevant to the searched keyword or phrase. Major search engines like Google & Bing consistently upgrade their spiders to ensure links with the most apt content appear in search results. Original & pertinent content is the best method to rank high in searches. So, you can’t really fool a search engine since the composition matters most but great content also needs to be supplemented by certain search engine approved parameters…
Let us look at some Search Engine Optimization Techniques
1) The <H1> tag – This is a heading tag used in HTML. A little knowledge of HTML would go a long way in improving your search engine rankings.
If you have reached this page by searching for “How To Fool A Search Engine” you would also notice that the heading of this page is in an <H1> tag! The heading tags, especially <H1>, convey to the search engine what is the topic the page is about and the search engine would generally assume the page content is relevant to the heading.
There are other ways to create a large size heading as well, for instance doing so in the css file. But this doesn’t have as much of an impact in improving search engine rankings and search engine optimization. Such a page can also be relevant to the user but it wouldn’t have the desired result in search engines!
2) Naming of the URL – Most search engines also parse out the name of the URL or the filename of the page.
If you look in the URL of this page, the name that appears is How-to-fool-a-search-engine. Notice also that there are no underscores ( _ ) in the URL, we are using hyphen ( – ). Google & other search engines relate to the hyphen better than the underscore when it comes to indexing keywords. Another thing to note is, connecting words like to, in, for, at etc. are often ignored by search engines. So How-fool-search-engine would have almost the same impact as How-to-fool-a-search-engine. The search engine bots also go by the assumption that the name used in the URL provides credence that the page is based on that topic. You would have also noticed how Google highlights URL words in search results that match the keywords searched for.
3) Alt & Title tags in images – Alt tags assist Google in providing image search results. And, though debatable, it also adds to the keywords used in the page as a whole. While the alt tag should convey what the image is about, you can also consider using your main keyword in the image alt tag. Check the above image again – if you hover your mouse over the image above, you would see the alternative text showing up as “How To Fool A Search Engine”.
4) Meta Tags – Again, make full use of the title and description tags. I have used the title “How To Fool A Search Engine“. The search engine bots expect the meta description to be sufficiently indicative of the content in the body. And if it indeed is, this helps even more!
5) Keywords, of course! So if this page is supposed to be search engine optimized to be visible as a result for the search “How To Fool A Search Engine“, it must contain the keyword “How To Fool A Search Engine”. Not too many times though! Try and count the number of times it appears in this page… Some 2-3% of the whole content should be good enough!
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