I know some high up theosophical bobo’s read this blog, so I thought I’d share a must read article on THE main Search Engine Optimization (SEO) blog out there:
These are only the coding things. Send it to your webmaster and ask them to report on any issues not taken care of. These are all big no-no’s. It’s a list of worst practices, NONE of which should be on your site.
You may say – hey, our site does get Google traffic. Well, Google will make the best of a bad situation. Trust me though: if you get all those issues out of your site, you will get MORE traffic. There’s several reasons that on most theosophical topics if you search my new theosophy search page, you’ll get to only a handful of the sites on my list. Most sites that show up are personal sites (mine, Blavatsky archives, Blavatsky net etc.). TS Adyar sites are doing especially badly.
Once the basics are taken care of (I know – it may take years), here’s a semi-random list of tips on really getting search traffic:
- Have content about main theosophical / new age topics and people. You know: karma, reincarnation, spiritual development, Blavatsky, Besant, Leadbeater, Krishnamurti, Buddha, Christ, Muhammad etc.
- Organize your articles by topic (I know: hard, still, it will help a LOT)
- Put up links to related articles on your site with each article (again: hard, but it will help a lot)
- Don’t set up a new domain for every new project. Even subdomains should only be used in cases where the project is long term.
- Have a sitemap that shows the structure of your site. The deeper the better. For the techy’s reading this: I don’t mean an XML sitemap. I’m talking about a sitemap in ordinary HTML that is going to help your users find your content. It will help google find that content too. The advantage of using a CMS like WordPress is that this can be automated.
- Don’t duplicate your efforts. Have one webshop for your books. Not two. The TS Adyar and US TS Adyar sites both make this mistake. And no, I don’t care why someone chose that path. It’s confusing for users and isn’t going to help you in the search engines either.
When you’re doing a redesign:
- Set up a google webmaster tools account for your site.
- Find out through that account what pages on your site are linked to
- Then 301 redirect those URLs to their new location
Oh – and not really related, but somewhat related: your website needs an editorial team, just like your magazine.
Remember: for my generation and younger it’s simple: what’s not found online doesn’t exist.