David C. Dalton
Web Application & Database Development, Responsive Website Design, Programming & SEO Services
So many people waste so much money trying to market a website that came "out of the box" as the most search engine unfriendly site ever built. I can’t for one second understand why search engine optimization isn’t one of the first things thought about when developing a website or application.
Search Engine Optimization
What seems to be the most logical approach to search engine optimization also seems to be the most overlooked aspect of today’s website design and development. Way too many "website design" companies keep pumping out garbage code from Dreamweaver and Front Page because it makes them a quick profit. They honestly don’t care what your search rankings are and feel it’s not their problem but it should be.
I have spent years learning, re-learning and testing my optimization techniques and am now confident I have found the most consistent methods available today. My methods are basically simple, logical and enhance more than just search engine rankings. Most of all my techniques do not require marketing budgets to turn a "sows ear" into a "silk purse". They work from day one of the website launch and keep working with no extra time or money spent by you.
Less Code Equals Better Rankings
Again, Before you listen to me rant about tableless CSS driven sites and the SEO advantages, please read this about tabled website layouts, from the 2003 Seybold conference, by Bill Merikallio (Scott Designs) and Adam Pratt (Adobe Systems Incorporated) ... it just saves me so much talking.
As I mentioned in the CSS - XHTML Interfaces section less code does equal better rankings. Take a look at the source code of the your site, or of the sites your developer has built. Is it hard to find the readable text? Do you have to scroll through hundreds of lines of HTML before you get to this readable text? Aggravating isn’t it? The search engine spiders feel the same way and if your developer's code looks like this they are not the developer for you. My design coding is 100% tableless CSS with an average of 1 - 20 code to content ratio (one html tag for every 20 readable - indexable word). Search engines love content and the less code they have to wade through to get to it the better your rankings!
proper tags, used in the proper way
Another major mistake 90% of all web developers make is the improper use of the HTML tags available to them that enhance search engine rankings. Among these are header tags (IE: h1, h6, h3), alt tags for images, title tags for hyper links and proper meta tags. Again these "other" developers just want to pump out code as fast as possible to keep that profit margin up. 99% of them don’t even know the proper use of the bulk of HTML tags so how can you expect them to use them effectively.
As silly as some developers feel it is I am proud to say I am master certified in HTML. To those who think HTML is a language "anyone can do" I have to giggle, because those people are the ones who build sites that consistently require massive outside marketing to get decent rankings. I know every legal tag in HTML and the effects it may have on a site’s search engine rankings. Ask your developer what tags effect rankings and see what response you get.
urls that boost your rankings
Did you know the url that shows in the location bar of your favorite browser can have major effect on your rankings? No? Well they do and that effect can be dramatic! If you have page names like about.html or dynamic pages with urls like index.php?page=something you are hurting your rankings. I use Apache mod_rewrites to make these urls super search engine friendly. By converting your about.html url to a keyword loaded, static appearing url you have effectively added your keywords to each and every page in the most important spot of all. Likewise by removing dynamic url characters from your url (our index.php example) and creating what appear to be static urls you have opened up your whole website to serious "deep" indexing by their spiders and better rankings.
Black Hat Search Engine Optimization Techniques
What are black hat optimization techniques? Keyword stuffing, floating keywords off the page with CSS, illegal doorway pages, serving up different pages to the search engine spiders than your visitors see and many other techniques are all considered black hat SEO. I will not under ANY circumstances use any of these techniques on any website, please don’t ask!
You may ask why I even mention these techniques. Well as with many of the other pages on this site I want my customers to be informed about some of the nasty little tricks some of the "other" companies will pull. How do you know when to get nervous about your SEO company? There are some tell tale signs. Here are just a few:
- They guarantee top 3 placements - Sorry folks no one can guarantee anything with the search engines!
- They guarantee your rankings will go up in a very short period of time
- The will not explain what it is they are doing to your website
- They say everything that needs to be done will be done in a very short timeframe
These are just a few of the warning signs of a black hat search engine optimization company. These vultures always do the "hit and run" and will be long gone by the time you get banned from the search engines. Banned you say? That’s right, using any of these techniques to artificially boost your rankings will get you banned for life. The search engine companies aren’t stupid and they will catch you. Sure you’ll get some great rankings for a month or two but then you will literally drop off the face of the earth. You may never be allowed back into the search engines or you may have to jump through hoops with them and completely redo the pages on your website to get back in. Trust me, it’s just not worth it!
I work with clients to build a long term solution that works today and for years to come. Do I sometimes get results quickly? Yes, it can happen but more than not it can take 1 - 3 months to see the final results of all of our labor. The difference with my service is once you get those rankings up it will only take minor tweaks to keep them up there for years to come. Please, even if you don’t hire me to do your search engine optimization, don’t waste your hard earned marketing budget on some scam that will cost you tens of thousands of dollars down the road!
A Few Testimonials
Just a few notes from some happy customers that have used my search engine optimization services
As a marketing firm, we work with a lot of technology experts throughout the country. Finding Dave, though, was like finding the needle in the haystack. Dave is the real deal when it comes to SEO. He understands the high-level code strategies that drive search engine rankings as well as the little details that add up to big results. I highly recommend Dave for any company with aggressive organic search goals.Justin Spring, Co-Founder of Adept Marketing.
I've used several developers who said they knew SEO but they didn't, so far only Dave has delivered real results and substantially increased traffic.JT. Kreager, owner NextHunt.com
As the owner of a natural, handmade bath and body business, it is extremely difficult to compete on the internet with other like-minded sites and to gain visibility for my e-commerce website. Up until recently, my website was a mere grain of sand on the vast seashore of Google. That is, until davidcdalton.com came and saved the day. When we hired them to re-work our website with current SEO, we had NO idea what we were in store for. After working extensively on each and every page and product within our site, davidcdalton.com uploaded the new site and we waited. It didn’t take long. Within a matter of days, Google had picked up the new pages and started indexing them. That’s not the mind-blowing part. What stunned me, is that I saw my visibility increase within a 5 day period for keywords that are next to impossible to gain favor with. The most popular keyword searches in my business are soap, handmade, body, natural, face, bath, products. In that order. Well, thanks to davidcdalton.com, I can now be found in the top 10 returned results on Google for MANY of those keywords. What’s so amazing, is that just 5 days previous, I was ranking 100, 170 and 220. I just can’t even say enough about the work that they did for me, and I plan on shouting it from the rooftops to anyone who wants to listen. It’s the best investment I’ve ever made for my e-commerce website.Lissa Lee, owner bathandbodycare.com
I really don’t know where to begin. Opening your own business is so complex, there are so many things to consider when taking on the task. I mean nothing is what it seems. Hey, I need a website, you need to come up with a website concept, then chose someone to make it come to light. You would think your problems were solved, right? Wrong, that’s just the beginning, now you need potential clients to know that your website exists. How do I do that? Exactly, I don’t have a clue, but yet it’s really the most important issue the business owner has to face. I had tried to work on site placement myself from what little advice friends could give and what info I could find on the internet. I saw very little improvement. More time waisted, more money not made. That’s why I called Dave Dalton. He came highly recommended by other successful people with websites. I have to tell you that almost instantly after using Dave’s services my rankings on the search engines started to improve. Within 3 months there was major changes that took place. I now show up on the first or second page of google when typing in the words of services that I provide. You can’t ask for more than that. All I can say is Thank You!Theresa Judd, Owner/Artist permanentcosmeticsbytheresa.com