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Session – Fun With Dynamic Sites

Posted on Dec 5th, 2006
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    The idea that your site has to be static, or look static, to do well in search engines is getting to be a thing of the past. This session covered the myths and current issues that people are facing with dynamic websites. All of which can be fixed.

    Things to consider –

    • ? in a URL is ok as long as you don’t over do it.
    • & in a URL is ok too to a point.
    • Search engines don’t care about file extensions (.php, .html, .cfm, .asp) however Yahoo doesn’t like .c files.
    • Most content management systems have cleaned up their URLs. Check with your CMS vendor to get updated code. If they haven’t, bug them about it.
    • Always keep your URLs short. Keep them to less than 200 characters and the fewer the variables the better.
    • Always remove Session IDs, any type of user IDs and timestamp information from URLs.
    • Use cookies to save info, but don’t make cookies required.
    • If you do need cookies, detect search engines and give them a cookie free version.
    • Also don’t make Javascript, Flash or anything else required as you may block search engines.
    • Consider condensing URLs to use one variable, then that variable ties into the database to define other layout and formatting.

    There is always more than one solution to any issues and working through them will not only make your site better for search engines, but also your visitors. Dynamic sites have no problems ranking, it’s how they display and interact with search engines that cause the issues.