SEO Tips - Appendix B - Images and 3rd Party Content
Final section of Appendix B, "at last" I hear you say. Well if you didn't or even if you did, take a deep breath keep reading and enjoy the fact there is an Appendix C and D in the pipeline. These are about Social Networking and also how to make your blog SEO friendly. Dealing with Images is something of great importance, ok it won't mean your site's page rank is altered for the worse if you don't but get it correct and SE's appreciate this. As could the average user, if not those with a disability. Control your images and make your site accessible.
Images - So how do you make your image both SEO friendly and Accessible? Well its quite simple really, alter your image size, not dimensions but file size, the smaller the better normally, though don't skimp on appearance. Since a monitor can only display 72DPI (normally) this is what definition you should use for image, software such as "MS Image Manager" or more often used for webdesign "Adobe Fireworks" will alter this for you if it is at a higher resolution. Secondly, use alt tags, these exist for a reason, to make your site accessible. But going further than this Alt tags are read by SE's and for Google in particular this means its image robot (though other SE's may have one). It is because SE's are blind they see your alt tags, with this in mind you should use keywords if possible as alt tags. Also because you give them an alt tag you will get linked from image engines like Google images (http://images.google.com). When linking an image you may want to consider using the "title" tag to allow SE's and users to see where they are going.
Other Content - This section contains information on 3rd party content, such as Flash, SilverLight and PDF's amongst other such content. Such content as flash and pdf's are often frowned upon by SEO experts, but with recent improvements to SE's indexing power there is no reason for this. Especially for the likes of Google and Yahoo whome have worked alongside Adobe to make both formats accessible to SE's. It has also come to light that MSN Live has started to index these, but also has the power to read its own SilverLight. However with exception of SilverLight and MSN, for flash (at least) you should consider that although indexing power is increasing for these it is not the best, and more over you are making work for a SE's robot that only has a finite time to look for information, you should be making it easier. So whilst I personally won't be using such 3rd party content on my site's at this moment, I would feel fairly confident if i created a simple flash file google could index it. In terms of PDF's all major SE's can no index these quite well, though not perfectly, help it out by giving headers, and images titles. Much as you would a webpage.
Next Blog - SEO Tips - Appendix C Will contain information about social networking and its mysterious powers.