SEO for dummies



  • Any experts on ML?

    The Marketing Department has employed the services of a company to do an audit of our existing site with a view to rewriting it in Wordpress. I didn't really want to get involved as I have no interest in websites but their review has made a few technical criticisms of our site and since I wrote the existing site it has piqued my interest (some of you will know, I dont take criticism well :))

    Google Analytics shows that some visitors to some of our pages get the case wrong eg they visit Products.htm instead of products.htm. They said this is screwing our SEO because Google sees it as duplicate content and recommended using .htaccess to redirect all URLs to their lower case equivalent.

    Now, we're running IIS, which I would have expected that they would know. I'd also expect them to know that IIS doesn't use .htaccess. So that worries me for a start.

    Now obviously the main reason Products.htm works as a URL is because IIS runs on Windows and so isn't case sensitive. Now the question is, so what? Is Google really going to punish us because some websites have links to some of our pages with the incorrect case? And is it worth spending $$$ to have this company write custom code to dynamically convert upper case in URLs to lower case? And does anyone know of any other websites that do this? I can't find any - all the ones I've tested are either case insensitive or give 401s if you get the case wrong.

    As they are writing our new website in Wordpress I have noted that Wordpress isn't case sensitive either. So they will have to mod Wordpress to behave differently from its default. Why?

    I'm not a web expert, or even a hobbyist. It simply doesn't interest me. But this all sounds nonsense to me.

    Any views please?





  • Just to be clear all our URLs are lower case, it is just some links to our site from external websites that may use uppercase.



  • @Carnival-Boy said in SEO for dummies:

    Just to be clear all our URLs are lower case, it is just some links to our site from external websites that may use uppercase.

    Right but if I type in yourwebsite.com/About.html vs yourwebsite.com/about.html then google registers it as a separate page.





  • How do you do this in Wordpress?

    And can anyone find any mainstream website that actually does a 301 on uppercase URLs?



  • ..apart from MangoLassi :)



  • I suppose I'm saying why spend money on something that 99% of websites don't appear to do. If it really mattered, wouldn't it be more common?

    Wordpress and Joomla don't. NodeBB does (I think). amazon.com, ebay.com, microsoft.com don't. yahoo.com does.



  • SEO is snake oil sales men at their finest today. If you want to raise your Google rankings it's actually quite simple to do your self.



  • SEO is about a few key things.

    Here's googles tips How google search works and some web administrator guidelines.

    Specific guidelines

    Avoid the following techniques:

    • Automatically generated content
    • Participating in link schemes
    • Creating pages with little or no original content
    • Cloaking
    • Sneaky redirects
    • Hidden text or links
    • Doorway pages
    • Scraped content
    • Participating in affiliate programs without adding sufficient value
    • Loading pages with irrelevant keywords
    • Creating pages with malicious behavior, such as phishing or installing viruses, trojans, or other badware
    • Abusing rich snippets markup
    • Sending automated queries to Google

    Follow good practices like these:

    • Monitoring your site for hacking and removing hacked content as soon as it appears
    • Preventing and removing user-generated spam on your site

    Not included on the"good list" but should be is to make sure your site content is constantly being updated. There are others tips as well, I would think that case sensitivity is something to avoid as well so your site gets all of the direct hits that it needs.



  • @Carnival-Boy said in SEO for dummies:

    How do you do this in Wordpress?

    And can anyone find any mainstream website that actually does a 301 on uppercase URLs?

    I don't do it with my site, but it might be worth checking out this plugin.

    https://wordpress.org/plugins/simple-301-redirects/



  • I find it hard to believe that if you have a page called Products.html and a page called products.html and they are identical in every way that a company that has developed a self-driving car is too stupid to work out that they are actually the same page.



  • @Carnival-Boy said in SEO for dummies:

    I find it hard to believe that if you have a page called Products.html and a page called products.html and they are identical in every way that a company that has developed a self-driving car is too stupid to work out that they are actually the same page.

    Unix based systems are the king of web servers and case actually matters on these systems. This is in the links I shared. Also if you google web page capitalization and SEO you get alot of results confirming that YES there is a difference.

    I offered some solutions for both Windows and Wordpress.


  • Service Provider

    @Carnival-Boy said in SEO for dummies:

    I find it hard to believe that if you have a page called Products.html and a page called products.html and they are identical in every way that a company that has developed a self-driving car is too stupid to work out that they are actually the same page.

    I think that the problem is that... what if they stop being the same page?



  • @IRJ said in SEO for dummies:

    Unix based systems are the king of web servers and case actually matters on these systems.

    Not so much these days since sites run CMSs and don't rely on the underlying OS. Wordpress, for example, as I've mentioned, isn't case sensitive, despite the majority of Wordpress sites running on Linux.


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