I discovered a new blog today – Dazzlin Donna. One of her posts, Don’t Forget These Five Things on a New SIte, reminded me of a couple of things I sometimes forget. What about you, does your site contain the following?
A robots.txt file will tell the search engines to index every page or your site or not allow certain pages. If you want all pages of your site indexed, the robots.txt file should look like this:
If you do NOT have a robots.txt file, the default behavior is to index everything. If you want to disallow certain directories, then you need to specify them in your robots.txt file. In that case, your file might look something like this:
You can write your own robots.txt file or use can generate a custom robots.txt file with a tool like http://tools.seobook.com/robots-txt/generator/
You can read more about what a robots.txt file is all about, by visiting http://www.robotstxt.org/robotstxt.html.
An XML sitemap is not required on your site but is a good way to let the search engines know about pages on your sites that are available for crawling.
Google introduced Google Sitemaps so web developers can publish lists of links from across their sites. The basic premise is that some sites have a large number of dynamic pages that are only available through the use of forms and user entries. The Sitemap files can then be used to indicate to a web crawler how such pages can be found. Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask now jointly support the Sitemaps protocol. ~ Wikipedia ~
Custom 404 page
What does a visitor to your site see if they try and visit a page that no longer exists? A generic 404 – Not Found page? Or have you provided them with a custom 404 page that allows them to continue to navigate your site? You can find a tutorial on Custom Error Pages – Customizing BlueHost Error Pages on our sister site, Expression Web Tutorials & Templates and one on How to create custom Error Pages on Genealogy Web Creations.
Do your visitors a favor and create your own Custom 404 page.
What is a Favicon? It’s that tiny little graphic that shows when you bookmark a site like the EW on this blog. A favicon (short for favorites icon) is a 16×16 or 32×32 pixel square icon associated with a particular website or webpage. Use any square image file and run it through a favicon generator like the one provided by Dynamic Drive. Upload the file to the root directory of your site and insert the code given below in the head section of your page.
The code to inset the favicon looks like this <link rel=”shortcut icon” type=”image/x-icon” href=”/favicon.ico>
And last but not lease, don’t forget to add your analytics or stats code to your new site. Whether you use Google Analytics or a different one, find the instructions and the code to use and add it to your pages.
You can read Dazzlin Donna’s full post Five Things Not to Forget on a New Site! Thanks Donna for a great reminder.