Website directories: More than meets the eye

Written by Lauri Harpf

Continued from page 1

After working on it for a while, I decided to switch my focus to other promotion methods and get back to optimizing my site later. As I knew that both of them were good traffic providers, I chose to spendrepparttar time I had to submittingrepparttar 128392 site to both Yahoo and DMOZ. Fortunately, my submissions were accepted andrepparttar 128393 site was added to both directories after a while. A few weeks passed and I begun to see referrals not only from Yahoo and DMOZ, but also from Google in my logs. I went back to check my rankings and noticed that they had vastly improved. And then it dawned on me..

I went back to DMOZ and managed to get another sub-section ofrepparttar 128394 same site listed. I waited for a couple of weeks for Google to reindex and WHAM! This sub-section went from nowhere to be found to a Top 15 ranking on a competitive keyphrase with over half a million returns. The only thing that had changed was thatrepparttar 128395 page was now listed at DMOZ.

This incident inspired me, so I went and looked ifrepparttar 128396 same principle could be applied to other engines as well. I noticed that nearly all of them appeared to give weight to directory listings, but ifrepparttar 128397 search engine happened to be affiliated with a certain directory, it was extremely important to be listed in said directory in order to rank high. With Google, this directory was DMOZ, with Excite it was Looksmart and so on. Sites that were listed inrepparttar 128398 right directories appeared to have a definite advantage against sites that weren't.

My conclusion would be thatrepparttar 128399 days when search engines and directories could be treated as separate entities are now gone. If you want to achieve high traffic, you're going to have to tackle both atrepparttar 128400 same time. The traditional search engine optimization methods - a keyword-intensive copy, meta tags, link popularity and so on - are far from being dead, but there definitely is a new major factor in play that you should account for.

Lauri Harpf runs the A Promotion Guide website, where he offers free information about search engines, directories and other promotion methods. His site can be found at


Written by Richard Lowe

Continued from page 1

There is a technique which appears, onrepparttar surface, to solve every single problem that you could dream of having with rankings and different search engines. This technique will make it header for people to steal your keywords and it will allow you to have different pages for each search engine, while still landing your visitors on a page perfectly suited for human reading.

It's called "cloaking" and it is exactly what it sounds like. The technique is pretty simple, really. You see, search engines are very nice about identifying themselves. They do this for a number of reasons, one of which is to make it easy for a web site to allow or reject their attentions (believe it or not, sometimes there are good reasons NOT to be listed in a search engine).

In a cloaked site, a special script is written which is executed onrepparttar 128391 server. This can be done with ASP or PHP pages (these are two different scripting languages) although most commonly it is done with standard CGI scripts executed using SSI.

Using this method,repparttar 128392 script is called beforerepparttar 128393 page is loaded. The script determinesrepparttar 128394 name ofrepparttar 128395 thing that is loadingrepparttar 128396 page. Is it a browser or a search engine? If it is a search engine, which one is it? Based uponrepparttar 128397 answer,repparttar 128398 script loads a page. So if it determines thatrepparttar 128399 page is being loaded by Altavista, it will call uprepparttar 128400 page which is optimized for Altavista. The same goes for Google, Northing Lights or any number of other engines.

This tends to hiderepparttar 128401 keywords and other search engine ranking techniques from prying eyes, since human beings always see a page created explicitly to be seen by humans. Note that this just makes it more difficult to get these keywords, not impossible. You see,repparttar 128402 name ofrepparttar 128403 search engine or browser (called a user agent) is handed torepparttar 128404 server byrepparttar 128405 browser - and it's not hard to fake (in fact, it's pretty darn trivial).

Cloaking is somewhat of a pain, since it does require a very well written script,repparttar 128406 use of server-side scripts, and, of course, a different page for each engine plus one for human reading. And since it's best to do this with ALL of your pages, it could significantly increaserepparttar 128407 amount of work you need to put into your site.

Another thing that cloaking is very good for is to present different pages to different browsers. This is a very cool way to create a site which looks perfect in Netscape and Internet Explorer as well as Opera. Of course, creating different pages for just these three browsers triples your work. So should you consider cloaking? Absolutely not.

You should NOT use cloaking.

Let me repeat this - do not use cloaking on your web site.

Onrepparttar 128408 surface it sounds likerepparttar 128409 perfect solution to search engine optimization except for one significant fact.

Cloaking is considered by all ofrepparttar 128410 major search engines to come underrepparttar 128411 heading of search engine spamming. If you are caught (and it's easy for a search engine to figure it out) you WILL be banned fromrepparttar 128412 engine. How do they catch you? Simple. The search engine simple sends a few test scans atrepparttar 128413 same time to your site using different TCP/IP addresses and identifications, and it "fools" your script into thinking it's a different engine. If your page looks different, it's possible it's cloaked.

So my advice is simple. Don't use cloaking. Instead of putting your efforts into fad promotional techniques and spamming methods, create quality content, get other webmasters to link to your site, and add honest keywords, titles, ALT tags and descriptions. Do this and your site will honestly move uprepparttar 128414 rankings. Honesty is also without failrepparttar 128415 best policy.

Richard Lowe Jr. is the webmaster of Internet Tips And Secrets at - Visit our website any time to read over 1,000 complete FREE articles about how to improve your internet profits, enjoyment and knowledge.

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