If you ask web professionals what their interpretation of the phrase information architecture is, you will get a wide variety of responses. A search engine optimization (SEO) professional might launch into some grand scheme about indexation and PageRank sculpting. A web developer usually views information architecture in terms of fields in a database—how each field (information) will be used on different web pages. However, if you presented these intepretations of information architecture to people who are actually information architects, you will probably see some raised eyebrows and confused facial expressions. Many information architects have no idea what the words indexation or PageRank mean. Though some information architects use many of the keyword research tools that SEO professionals use on a daily basis, most information architects have other tricks up their sleeves. Card sorting and reverse card sorting tests with direct, face-to-face user interaction are some ways that … [Read more...] about SEO Vs. Web Site Architecture
Web site content management
Nowadays, a great many websites are powered by a content management system (CMS) along with a back-end database. And for good reason. It’s too unwieldy to code HTML on a page-by-page basis, as you expand your content offerings to the thousands or tens of thousands of pages (and beyond). Content managements systems to the rescue! But there can be downsides too. My biggest gripe with the content management systems of today is their lack of SEO features. And I’m not talking about meta keywords, which are a complete waste of time. I’m patiently waiting for the day when a CMS-based site can rival static HTML sites in SEO. No bones about it, hand-coded sites offer complete, granular control over each page, and every single tag contained within. That’s real flexibility. Too bad they don’t scale. Therefore, the SEO practitioner is going to need a CMS that will at least be cooperative. Which SEO features should you be shopping for in a CMS? Glad you asked. … [Read more...] about How To Choose Content Management Systems For SEO
Why is it that so much airtime (including by me) is given over at conferences and through blogs to geo-targeting issues—choosing the right domain, sub-domain or folder structure or choosing the right hosting—and yet content barely ever gets mentioned? Now that wouldn’t matter if it wasn’t for the fact that content is, in the end, king just as much internationally as domestically. I don’t mean to imply that geo-targeting isn’t important—see Bill Hunt’s excellent post on the topic. But what is beginning to concern me is the fact that, aside from the occasional mention of duplication, I cannot remember the last time that anyone actually raised a hand to ask me about managing content, at any conference I’ve spoken at—anywhere in the world. Going global questions, in order of frequency In fact, the questions are pretty much the same now as they were when Chris Sherman put me on one of the first international SEO conference panel … [Read more...] about International Web Content Management Is King!
At a search engine marketing conference, several of us gave a session on website usability topics ranging from usability and SEO to site architecture and requirements gathering. Afterward, there was time for questions by the audience. Someone asked, “Why don’t we all just copy Amazon.com?” I replied, “Never, ever copy what Amazon does.” The audience responded with surprise, thinking I was not a fan of Amazon. Not true. The reason you don’t want to copy a successful site like Amazon is that their website requirements are not likely to be the same as your site requirements. Their users may have different characteristics than your site visitors. Their customers’ needs may be completely different. You don’t have the user, traffic analysis and usability testing data they’ve collected over the years that they use as a base for their user interface, information architecture and content delivery. Your website is unique Today, with blog … [Read more...] about It’s A Fatal Mistake To Copy Successful Web Sites
Content management systems (CMS) have evolved over the last decade to become core tools of the SEO trade—or at least platforms on which much SEO work must be based. Sadly, this isn’t so true in the international space, particularly when different languages are involved. Yet the choice of a content management system or approach is often a key step to achieving success. Content management systems can help you succeed with both international SEO and multilingual PPC where they deal with the differences or additions necessary compared with a single-language, single-country system. Sadly, retro-fitting a new system can pose numerous additional hurdles to your international roll-out just when you need to be thinking about other things, such as logistics and how you’ll deliver support. So if you’re specifying a new system now—and have plans to expand internationally later—it’s good practice to include “international” in your … [Read more...] about My Dream International Content Management System