Starting Your First Web Project, Part 5

Starting Your First Web Project, Part 5

WHAT YOU WILL LEARN

In this lesson Starting Your First Web Project, Part 5, you will learn the final steps of completing keywords and creating the metatags for all the sections of a Website.


BRINGING IT ALL TOGETHER

At this point, we have followed John through the process of making a preliminary assessment of the viability of his recipe Website, planning and designing his site, creating raw content, and generating his keywords and key phrases.

John will now arrive at the final set of keywords for the various sections of his site by comparing the keywords and key phrases he has come up with actual search engine statistics. As he does so, he will lay out the folder structure of his site on the server and create the framework of each page by typing in the title, description, and keywords metatags, as well as a comment containing his keywords at the top of the body section of each page.

You may recall that not all search engines read keyword metatags. In fact, the two most important search engines ignore them. Why then do we go to all this trouble to create keywords? The answer is that we include our keywords not only in the keyword metatag but also in the title, the description, the comment, and, most importantly, the actual content of each page. The keyword metatag is quite useful as a handy notation to yourself in each page of what the important words are for that page. You should refer to them often as you compose the content of each page. Plus, of course, many important search engines do read the keywords metatag.

John’s design called for several sections to be created for his Website. One type of division he planned is to create a breakfast section, a lunch section, and a supper section. (In the southern United States, the midday meal was traditionally referred to as “dinner” and the evening meal as “supper.” Since people from other areas of the country, and a lot of people in the South now, refer to the evening meal as “dinner,” that word is somewhat ambiguous in the context of a Southern recipe site. Thus, John has decided to use “lunch” to refer to the midday meal and “supper” as the evening meal to avoid that possible confusion.)

Another way to divide up John’s recipe site is to have separate sections for different types of entrees. That is, a separate section each for beef, pork, poultry, seafood, and so on. John has also decided to have a separate section devoted to low-fat, health-conscious recipes. There will be more sections to his site (for example, a section on shopping for, or even growing, various ingredients) as John’s site evolves. That said, the above breakdown is sufficient for the basic layout of the site for now.

The main page (or home page) of the site will be a welcome area and a directory to the site with links to the various sections.


A KEYWORD STRATEGY FOR EACH SECTION OF YOUR SITE

While many of the same keywords and key phrases will be used on all pages, some keywords apply only to certain sections. Also, the order of the keywords should be different on each section, to emphasize the specific subject matter of each section. An obvious example is that the “breakfast” keyword should have a prominent place in the breakfast section of John’s site, but less emphasis on the main page and really should not appear in the lunch and supper sections.


SETTING UP YOUR SITE LAYOUT ON THE SERVER

John is now ready to begin actually putting up his site. His hosting company has given him an FTP account that allows him access into his directory (folder) on the server using a username and password. The first thing he will need to do is create his subdirectory (subfolder) structure to match the sections he plans to have on his site. Using his FTP software, John accesses his directory and clicks on the “Make Directory” button on the server side of the software interface. When prompted for a directory name, John types “Breakfast.” He then repeats this process, creating subdirectories for lunch, supper, beef, pork, poultry, and seafood. John also makes a subdirectory named “images” that he will use to keep all his graphic images and photos in one place. He creates another directory named “video” to house the streaming video files.

The next step is for John to create a file named “default.htm” or “index.htm” for the main directory and each subdirectory. (Whether he names the files “default.htm,” “default.html,” “index.htm,” or “index.html,” etc., depends on how the Web server has been configured by his hosting company. They will have given him this information.) A Web server looks for a file with a certain name, usually “default.htm,” to open when the URL points to a folder without including a file name. Since there will be several files with the same name (albeit in different directories), great care must be used not to confuse, misplace, or overwrite the files unintentionally. Always make sure you are in the correct directory when uploading a default file! Also, always make backups of your files before doing any FTP transfers in case you do accidentally overwrite the wrong file.

For each default file, John will type in the “Head” section, which includes the metatags for title, description, and keywords. Then he will insert the “body” tag (which lets the Web browser know that the content to be displayed is coming up). Just inside the “body” section, John will insert a comment, also containing his keywords. Although in the “body” section, this comment will not be displayed by the Web browser, but may be read by search engines.

BUT FIRST, John has to finalize his keywords and their order for each section of his site. He will start with the home page (the main section).


CHECKING YOUR KEYWORDS AND KEY PHRASES AGAINST TRAFFIC STATISTICS

Recall from Part 1 of this example that John started out by going to the Keywords Everywhere ” browser extension” to see the amount of traffic he can expect using his main keywords. Now, he will utilize  the “Keywords Everywhere Tool” to test his completed keyword lists for each section and to make sure he is on the right track.

John utilized his Keywords Everywhere  browser extension doing and internet search with his main Keyword. At the top of the resulting page, he can view the volume, cpc, and competition for his main keyword.” Then he clicks on the “Analyze This Page.” On the resulting page, John begins to see his keywords and key phrasesand how many people searched with those terms monthly on the internet.

Recall from the last lesson that John came up with “Dixieland” as a synonym for “South” and “victuals” as a synonym for “food.” Thus, when looking for possible key phrases by laying out his sticky notes in various orders, one of the possibilities was “Dixieland victuals.” Checking this phrase utilizing the Keywords Everywhere Tool reveals, however, that nobody searched for that phrase last month (as you would expect). Thus, John can discard this phrase. But, should he discard both words also? Perhaps not. When he inputs the words separately, he finds that 1490 people searched for “Dixieland” and 61 people search for “victuals” last month. It’s just that no one combined those particular two words in a search phrase.

Recall that John had “divorced” and “parent” as words in his keyword list. When he tried to find synonyms for “divorce,” he came up with “separated” and “dissolution.” Somehow, John overlooked the phrase “single parent.” It comes to him, however, when he is testing the phrase “divorced parent” utilizing the Keywords Everywhere Tool. And, it’s a good thing that it did come to him because he finds that 10,578 people searched with the phrase “single parent,” while only 474 search with the phrase “divorced parent.” Thus, he now knows that “single parent” is a much more powerful search phrase than “divorced parent.”

Continuing in this fashion, John searches every word in his keyword list and a large number of the phrases that result from combining the keywords in various orders. Doing this, he determines the traffic he could expect from each keyword and key phrase, based on the number of times they were searched for on a monthly basis. In this way, he is able to finalize his keywords and key phrases with some confidence.

John now begins typing in the “head” sections and “comments” for the default pages for each section of his site. Note again, that he puts the words most relevant to a section in the beginning of the key words list for that section, but includes them farther down the list, if at all, in the other sections. Note again that John will order his words to create the largest number of key phrases with the least amount of repetition of words.

Recall also that the “title” tag is not just a list of your keywords, but is a meaningful phrase that incorporates the most important of your keywords. Same is true of the “description” metatag, only it can be somewhat longer than the “title.”


CONCLUSION

Starting Your First Web Project, Part 5

The process of generating keywords is both creative and critical. You have to be creative initially to come up with as many possible words as you can. You start by analyzing your target market as we did in Lesson 1. You then use that starter list to generate many more potential keywords by reducing your starter list to the root words and finding as many derivatives and synonyms as you can for these words, as we did in Lesson 4. Then, as John did using sticky notes for each root word and laying them out in various orders, you find as many key phrases as you can from these words. You try to order your words so that each word can be a part of at least two different phrases, due to its relationship to the words before it and the words after it, to maximize your word foresight. Finally, you critically cut down your list of keywords and key phrases by checking them against actual search engine traffic statistics and eliminating the ones that will draw little or no traffic. You organize your Website into different sections, and you are now ready to type in the title, description, and keywords metatags, as well as the comment tag, for each section of your site.


WHAT’S COMING NEXT

In our next lesson, John will begin typing in the actual content of his Web site. He will carefully include links to his business gateways at strategic points in his content.

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