Cogentis Pty Ltd

WEBSITE MARKETING STRATEGIES & SEARCH ENGINE MARKETING SERVICES

14th of November 2006

Search Engine Bootcamp - progressive enhancement methods for search engine spider accessibility

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Chris Dimmock has been invited to speak at “Search Engine Bootcamp” on November 30th, on advanced website accessibility issues for SEO. Cogentis have found that many websites - especially large corporate sites - have major information architecture related issues which often restrict access to their sites by search engine spiders (as well as many human users).

Chris will be talking about some of these issues - and the core accessibility concepts of ‘progressive user agent enhancement’ and unobtrusive use of javascript - which are fundamental to the Cogentis SEO site architecture approach. You can design a site which is both acccessible to all (including search engines) - whilst still providing an enhanced user experience for users with more capable browsers and plugins. At Cogentis, we have been using our progressive user enhancement site architecture methodology for SEO for over 3 years. And it shows in our client’s search engine results.

Because accessibility and search engine optimisation are often overlooked at the information architecture & site design stage - (and there is no ‘progressive user enhancement’, and often no ‘graceful degradation’ ) - often all there is left for Googlebot to index is an ‘Upgrade your browser’ message….

Chris will cover many of the technologies which limit search engine spider access - and what to do about them - without overly limiting site creativity or functionality for users with enhanced browsers.

15th of March 2006

Search Engine Room - 14th March 2006

Yesterday was the 2006 Annual Search Engine Room Conference, held at Cockle Bay, Darling Harbour Sydney.

It was a great conference - Martin Kelley, Bev and the SER team did a great job. Great speakers - great topics - and a very well run event.

The day started with a Google sponsored breakfast, introduced by Sukinder Singh Cassidy, Google GM Asia Pacific & Latin America Operations. Brian White, who works with Matt Cutts in Google’s Search Quality team, then gave a presentation on Search Quality and Google Sitemaps.

There were many great sessions at the SER 2006 conference - Craig Wax from Yahoo! gave a great presentation on “the evolution of the revolution” of search; and Ren Warmuz from Trellian/ Keyword Discovery gave a great presentation on Keyword research.

I gave a sesssion on Search Engine accessibility, and website accessibility in general - and got a lot of positive feedback. Brian White did a second presentation around lunchtime at the main conference - and stayed around all day to answer questions and speak to conference delegates.

Brian was on a tough schedule - he flew from the US to Australia on Monday - spent the whole of Tuesday at the SER conference (he gave a 7.30 breakfast presentation, and he didn’t leave SER until nearly 7.00pm) - and then flew back to the US on Wednesday morning. He had his ‘little black book’ out the whole time, taking notes….

It was also great to catch up with several of the guys (including Shor, ProjectPHP and edit_g) who post at Danny Sullivan’s Search Engine Watch forum, and Brett Tabke’s WebmasterWorld Forum.

Nearly 300 people attended SER 2006 - which I suspect makes it the biggest Search Conference held in Sydney to date. Look out for SER 2007 next year.

15th of October 2004

Accessibility, Web sites and Australian Law

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Tim Berners-Lee, (now Knight Commander, Order of the British Empire (KBE), as awarded in the Queen’s 2004 New Year’s Honours list) W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web said:

“The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect”

Web accessibility is an important issue which many graphically inclined web designers dismiss - to their clients detriment - as ‘too limiting to their creativity’. But one of the core commercial issues of accessibility is that if you make a web site that is accessible to text based browsers - the same style of browser that is used with a speech synthesizer, or braille reader, by the visually impaired to surf the internet - then you have also built a site that will be easily indexed by search engines. In Australia, its not only ‘good business’, and ‘good practice’ - its actually the law!

Continue reading Accessibility, web sites and Australian Law

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