Web Page Optimization

The Birth of a Professional Web Site
Part Seven: Web Page Optimization

by Shelley Lowery

Selecting the right keyword phrases for each page of your web site is the first step towards ranking high in the Search Engines. However, it is only the first step.

In addition to selecting targeted keyword phrases, you must also strategically optimize your page including:

  • META description tag
  • META keyword tag
  • Title
  • Image ALT tags
  • Heading tags
  • Image names
  • Hyperlinks
  • Body text


The META description tag will contain a description of your site. This description will be visible in some of the Search Engines when your site is returned in a search.

Your description should include your site’s most important keyword phrases.


<META name=”DESCRIPTION” content=”Providing dog grooming tips, supplies and training.”>

The META Keywords tag will contain a list of your keyword phrases separated with a comma. Your primary keyword phrase should be first, followed by one or two secondary keyword


<META name=”KEYWORDS” content=”dog grooming tips, dog grooming supplies, dog grooming training”>


An image Alt tag follows your graphic address or URL in your HTML code. These words will be displayed in place of your graphics through an older browser or when your visitors have their graphics turned off.

To fully optimize your graphics, insert your keyword phrases within the Alt tags of your graphics. At a bare minimum, make sure you use enough images to display all of your keyword phrases. Remember…your primary keyword phrase should always come first.

Example Images (Notice the images are named using the three primary keyword phrases):



<IMG SRC=WIDTH=80 HEIGHT=105 dog_grooming_tips.jpg ALT=dog grooming tips>
<IMG SRC=WIDTH=80 HEIGHT=105 dog_grooming_supplies.jpg ALT=dog grooming supplies>
<IMG SRC=WIDTH=80 HEIGHT=105 dog_grooming_training.jpg ALT=dog grooming training>


Just as you must place your keyword phrases within your META description and keyword tags, you must also use your primary keyword phrase as your web page title. Nothing more should appear between the <TITLE> and </TITLE> tags except your primary keyword phrase.

<H?> Tag

Heading tags are used to separate topics and range from <H1> being very large and bold to <H6> which is very small and bold. Some Search Engines place relevance on text displayed within the heading tags. Top priority is placed on the highest listed heading tag.

Your keyword phrases should each be used as a heading for sections within your web page (placed in the same order as your keyword phrases within your META keywords tag) and placed within an appropriate heading tag. These headings should be followed by some descriptive text.

Your headings should look something like this:

<H?>Dog Grooming Tips</H?>

Your descriptive content containing your keyword phrase.

<H?>Dog Grooming Supplies</H?>

Your descriptive content containing your keyword phrase.

<H?>Dog Grooming Training</H?>

Your descriptive content containing your keyword phrase.

<A HREF> Tag

When creating links on your web page, your links should be displayed together with a small image in front of each link. This image might be a graphic bullet, arrow, or whatever you’d like. These images will not only enhance your web page, but they will also enable you to place your keyword phrases within the Alt tags.

When you begin creating your links, make sure the page name, image name and page description text all contain your keyword phrases.

Your HTML code might look something like this:

<img src=dog_grooming_tips.gif alt=dog grooming tips>
<a href=dog_grooming_tips.htm>Dog Grooming Tips</a>

<img src=dog_grooming_supplies.gif alt=dog grooming supplies>
<a href=dog_grooming_supplies.htm>Dog Grooming Supplies</a>

<img src=dog_grooming_training.gif alt=dog grooming training>
<a href=dog_grooming_training.htm>Dog Grooming Training</a>


Optimizing your text is another important step towards ranking higher in the Search Engines. Your web page should contain plenty of text and should contain each of your keywords and keyword phrases used in different variations. If all of your keyword phrases you’ve listed within your META tags aren’t found within your text, the Search Engines will simply ignore them.

Search Engine Submissions

Once you’ve optimized your web pages and uploaded them to your server, your next step will be to submit your main pages to the Search Engines. However, don’t submit your pages to Google. Your pages will rank much higher if you allow this Search Engine to find your pages on its own.

You may want to consider creating a site map for your site and submit this page to Google instead. A site map is a page that outlines how your pages are set up and linked together. If you design a site map with links to all of your pages, the Search Engine robots can easily spider and index them.

Taking the time to optimize each of your web pages is the most important step you can take towards ranking high in the Search Engines and driving your more traffic to your web site.

(Continued in part eight)

Copyright © Shelley Lowery

About the Author:

Shelley Lowery is the author of the acclaimed web design course.