Google Guide: Making Searching Even Easier
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Creating Content

Following each tip is information about how I developed Google Guide and improved its content.

Create useful high-quality material that is of interest to users.

Created Google Guide in 2002 to get feedback for a tutorial book I was writing.

Goal of Google Guide -- make searching even easier for novices and experienced users

Design your website for the blind and deaf, not for spiders or search bots.

Search bots can't see visuals or hear sound files.

Make your titles, anchor text, and ALT tags descriptive and relevant.

Nelson Blachman, my blind father -- a wonderful reviewer and beta tester for Google Guide.

Present information in more than one way.

People have different needs and preferences.

My site's web logs help me to figure out which formats are popular.

Design names of pages to reflect what's on the page.

Google considers the text in the URL when indexing the page.

Include words on your web pages that users are likely to specify in a query when searching for your content.

I strive to convey information concisely and clearly, rather than incorporating particular words on my pages.

Design your site logically.
Include site maps.
Link to each page that you want accessible from a search engine.

Google Guide includes

Submit a sitemap so that Google will know about the structure of your website.

Google Sitemaps provides

Strive to keep your pages short and about at most a few topics.

A user is more likely to find what she seeks on a short page.

Sparingly use dynamic content, e.g., JavaScript, Flash, DHTML, etc.

Search engine spiders are able to index plain text and html more easily than flashy pages.

Flashy pages are more likely to be left out of Google's index and search results.

Correct misspellings.

Users are more likely to search for the correct spelling.

Seek feedback and use it to improve your site.

Users and web logs are great sources for feedback.

To encourage suggestions and corrections, I

Learn from your logs.

Try to figure out how and why users are coming to your site.

If you suspect that users may seek information that isn't on your site, consider adding it.

I noticed the query [ Google stock symbol ] led lots of users to the Google Guide Stock Quotes page.

So I added, at the top of the page,

Looking for Google's stock symbol? It's GOOG on Nasdaq. Click here for Google's stock price or search for it on Google.

Google  search box with [ goog ].
Eliminate errors.

Check your web logs.
Run a website validators, e.g., W3C Validation Service.
Remove broken links and correct invalid html.
Check Google Sitemaps to find out whether search bots are able to crawl your site.

For more suggestions on creating great websites, visit

This page was last modified on Sunday June 16, 2013.

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For Google tips, tricks, & how Google works, visit Google Guide at
By Nancy Blachman and Jerry Peek who aren't Google employees. For permission to copy
& create derivative works, visit Google Guide's Creative Commons License webpage.