Microsoft adCenter Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

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The right keywords for the right audience to capture the right customer
What is the adCenter Add-in for Excel with the Ad Intelligence module?
The adCenter Add-in is a keyword research and optimization tool, which enables users to rapidly build out or expand keyword lists and plan keyword strategy based on a range of important attributes such as relevance, historical cost, volume, geography and demographics. The adCenter Add-in provides the ability to easily research keywords to help you reach the right audience, and capture and convert the right customer.
This document contains:
I. External Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Contents
• About adCenter Add-in
• Getting Started
• How it Works
• Using the adCenter Add-in
• Support
• Troubleshooting
II. Glossary of Key Terms
I - External Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Contents
About adCenter Add-in
What is the Microsoft adCenter Add-in1. Beta?
Will the adCenter Add-in be available in other markets?2.
What features are found in the adCenter Add-in?3.
Why was the adCenter Add-in released in Beta?4.
Getting Started
What are the system requirements for the adCenter Add-in?5.
How do I download and install the adCenter Add-in?6.
I have an old version of the adCenter Add-in (formerly called adSage). How do I upgrade to the
7. new version?
I’ve installed the adCenter Add-in and now where do I find it?
8.
adCenter Add-inBeta for Excel
Frequently Asked
Questions (FAQs)
2
How it Works
9. How come I don’t always get results when I use the adCenter Add-in?
10. Under the Keyword Suggestion feature, what is the difference between the three algorithms shown
(Campaign Association, Contained and Similarity)?
11. What are the date ranges available for the data provided by the adCenter Add-in?
12. When using the Monthly Traffic feature, how does the adCenter Add-in forecast the traffic for the
three future months?
13. When using the Daily Traffic feature, why do the results not show search impressions more recent
than 3 to 5 days in the past?
14. When using the Monetization feature, how are the output ranges defined for the conditional
formatting of CTR and CPC?
15. When I set Maximum Suggested Keywords to 100 in Keyword Suggestion, why do I sometimes
receive less than this amount?
16. Why do I get duplicate terms in my results for Spiky Keywords?
17. How do I set the Geography function to show state, city, or country?
18. How do I set custom defaults for date ranges or other preferences for the various functions?
19. If I bid the CPCs recommended for Position 1, am I guaranteed the number one spot?
20. Please explain why the query number in Monthly Traffic for a month does not match the
impression data in Monetization?
21. Why does a lower position have a higher average CPC than a higher position?
22. Could my keyword impression count be different than Microsoft adCenter Add-in’s report?
23. Is content match included in impression counts?
24. Why is my search result displayed in a new sheet?
25. How do I compare the scores from two different functions?
26. Is adCenter Add-in information only derived from MSN data?
27. What is the taxonomy used for Keyword Categorization?
28. For results derived from the Monetization feature, why is it that sometimes the impression count is
vastly different for Positions 1, 2, and 3 for terms with high-bid density?
29. How are the impression numbers different between adCenter Add-in forecast data and the research
tab data in adCenter?
30. How accurate is monthly traffic forecasting and how is it done?
31. Are these keyword expansion tools based on actual search queries or keywords in adCenter?
32. Can keywords be classified into more than one category (e.g. “apple” can be both a fruit and a
technology brand)?
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Using the Add-in
How can I use the adCenter Add-in to quickly generate relevant keywords to describe my web sites?33.
How can I use the adCenter Add-in to quickly create or expand a list of relevant keywords?34.
How can I use the adCenter Add-in to forecast keyword search traffic?35.
How can I use the adCenter Add-in to understand the seasonality of keyword searches?36.
How can I use the adCenter Add-in to understand the localization of keyword searches?37.
How can I use the adCenter Add-in to understand the demographics of keyword searches?38.
How can I use the adCenter Add-in to obtain KPIs for keywords, such as CTR, CPC, Impressions and Position?39.
Support
Where else can I learn more about the most recent updates to the adCenter Add-in?40.
Who do I contact for adCenter Add-in support?41.
Where can I find adCenter Add-in support information?42.
How do I provide feedback and how can I suggest new features for the adCenter Add-in? (Excel 2007)43.
Troubleshooting
Why can’t I find my adCenter Add-in tab in the Excel ribbon? (Excel 2007)44.
I’ve successfully installed the adCenter Add-in, but when I run it I get an error message regarding “invalid user
45. authorization.” How do I resolve this? (Excel 2007)
How do you Optimize your campaign with the adCenter Add-in Beta for Excel?46.
About Microsoft adCenter Add-in
1. What is the Microsoft adCenter Add-in?
The Microsoft adCenter Add-in is a no-cost keyword research and optimization tool that integrates into Excel.
2. Will the adCenter Add-in be available in other markets?
The adCenter Add-in is currently available for adCenter customers in the US market. However, the adCenter Add-in provides data that can be useful in markets other than the US. You are free to download and use the adCenter Add-in even if you conduct business outside of the US.
3. What features are found in the adCenter Add-in?
The adCenter Add-in offers a broad selection of powerful keyword expansion and campaign optimization tools:
Keyword Extraction:• extracts commonly used keywords from a given website address, which allows the user to see what keywords are in popular use on that site.
Keyword Suggestion: • enables quick generation of a large list of relevant keywords from an initial list of keywords entered.
Search Buzz:• returns the top keywords, by vertical market, for the given time period. Two keyword trend research options are offered:
Top Spiky Keywords:• returns the keywords whose trends are sudden and spiking (i.e. not overall popularity, but demonstrate flashing and surging popularity).
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Top Frequent Keywords: • displays the keyword trends for the overall most popular keywords.
Monthly Traffic: • provides both Monthly Traffic and Daily Traffic.
Monthly Traffic:• allows the user to look at monthly historical and future, forecasted query counts for the given keywords.
Daily Traffic:• provides the user with daily query counts for the given keywords.
Keyword Categorization: • input keywords, and then the algorithm suggests a category based on the taxonomy.
Geographic: • provides location information of searchers for specific keywords (user can specify country, state or city) about the input keywords within a set time period.
Demographic: • provides demographic information on searchers (by gender, age group) about the given keywords within a set time period.
Monetization: • this feature has two sub-features:
Monetization: • allows users to gather monetization information for the given keyword(s). This
feature provides information about clicks, impressions, position, click through rate, cost per click, and match type • within a date range.
Vertical KPIs: • returns KPI’s (key performance indicators) through monetization information about selected verticals within a date range.
Advanced Algorithm: • enables you to set the parameters of all of the features to suit your business needs. Each feature can be set to meet personal preferences or needs.
4. Why was the adCenter Add-in released in Beta?
The adCenter Add-in was released in Beta as a way to gather feedback from customers. We hope that customers enjoy the tool and understand that since this is a Beta version additional functionality will be forthcoming.
Getting Started
5. What are the system requirements for the adCenter Add-in?
You will need the following on your PC:
adCenter Login•
Microsoft Office Excel 2003 or Excel 2007•
Internet access•
6. How do I download and install the adCenter Add-in?
The adCenter Add-in installation instructions and setup program is located at the following site:
http://advertising.microsoft.com/advertising/adCenter_addin (Excel 2007)
http://advertising.microsoft.com/adcenter-beta-pilot-signup (Excel 2003)
7. I have an old version of the adCenter Add-in (formerly called adSage). How do I upgrade to the new version?
To upgrade to the new version, first uninstall the old version and then install the new version. Please see the installation guide for detailed instructions.
8. I’ve installed the adCenter Add-in and now where do I find it?
After the adCenter Add-in is installed, it should automatically be available to you within Excel as a new tab called “Ad Intelligence,” located at the top of the page. Alternatively, the application (including Excel) can be launched by double-clicking a short cut adCenter Add-in icon on your desktop or by selecting the application from your program list, under the Windows Start Menu.
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How it Works
9. How come I don’t always get results when I use the adCenter Add-in?
In order to ensure that the data is anonymous when aggregated, we limit results to those that meet a minimum bar activity. For example, we typically limit the search counts to queries that are above a minimum search count for data that is based upon results from Live Search. In the case of the Campaign Association algorithm (based on data from adCenter), if only a small pool of advertisers have bid on a keyword, then the resulting data will be suppressed.
10. Under the Keyword Suggestion feature, what is the difference between the three algorithms shown (Campaign Association, Contained and Similarity)?
Campaign Association: • keywords that have been bid upon in adCenter.
MicrosoftContained: • keywords that have been part of a search query in Live Search and contain the given term.
Similarity: • keywords that are similar in context to other keywords used on the World Wide Web.
11. What are the date ranges available for the data provided by the adCenter Add-in?
Several different features in the adCenter Add-in offer different options for historical data ranges:
Top Spiky Keywords: • past 1, 10, 30 or 60 day period or a custom range.
Top Frequent Keywords, Monetization and Vertical KPIs: • past day, week or 30 day period.
Monthly Traffic: • past data for 1, 3, 6, 12 or 24 month period forecasted for 1, 3, 6 or 12 months.
Daily Traffic, Geographic and Demographic: • past data for 1, 7, 10, 30 or 60 day period — or you may specify a time period.
12. When using the Monthly Traffic feature, how does the adCenter Add-in forecast the traffic for the future months?
Monthly Traffic can be forecasted forward 1, 3, 6, or 12 months into the future. The forecasted values are determined by an algorithm, which considers past keyword trends and seasonality.
13. When using the Daily Traffic feature, why do the results not show search impressions more recent than 3 to 5 days in the past?
To ensure data quality, the adCenter Add-in provides a sample set of data that typically commences 3 to 5 days prior to the current date.
14. When using the Monetization feature, how are the output ranges defined for the conditional formatting of CTR and CPC?
The result ranges specified in the tool can be found by selecting the Conditional Formatting menu in Excel, found under the Home menu.
15. When I set Maximum Suggested Keywords to 100 in Keyword Suggestion, why do I sometimes receive less than this amount?
Maximum Suggested Keywords provides an estimated set of keywords based upon all that are available. Sometimes there are fewer keywords available than the maximum number specified. You can modify the maximum number of results returned in your options.
16. Why do I get duplicate terms in my results for Spiky Keywords?
In our system, we detect and give starting and ending dates for each spiky term. If there are duplicate terms in the results, it means the same term has become a spiky term multiple times in the given time frame.
17. How do I set the Geography function to show state, city or country?
Click the Options or the Advanced Algorithm buttons and select Geography. From here, you can set your geographical level.
18. How do I set custom defaults for date ranges or other preferences for the various functions?
Click the Options or the Advanced Algorithm buttons and select the function you wish to customize.
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19. If I bid the CPCs recommended for Position 1, am I guaranteed the number one spot?
The adCenter Add-in provides recommendations for bids based upon position; however, these recommendations are not conclusive. Variable factors impact placement such as the number of advertisers bidding, current bid prices and budget, term frequency, geographic and demographic targeting.
20. Please explain why the query number in Monthly Traffic for a month does not match the impression data in Monetization?
Monthly Traffic (and Daily Traffic) numbers are based on exact search query data. Monetization numbers are based on ad impressions which are further segmented by the match type chosen. The numbers will not match as a result of this.
21. Why does a lower position have a higher average CPC than a higher position?
CPC position can vary based on various factors, such as maximum CPC listed by the advertiser. For example, positions 1 through 3 could have a lower CPC than position 4 for one of your keywords. This happens when no ads were served for positions 1 through 3 for that keyword.
22. Could my keyword impression count be different than Microsoft adCenter Add-in’s report
Microsoft adCenter Add-in impressions for monthly data is based on exact search queries on Live.com. Monetization is based on keyword impressions by all advertisers. Microsoft adCenter keyword reports are based solely on keywords served. Microsoft adCenter data has also been filtered to remove invalid impressions.
23. Is content match included in impression counts?
Currently, content impressions are not included in Microsoft adCenter Add-in data.
24. Why is my search result displayed in a new sheet?
If you select more than 100 cells or if your selection is inside a data table, adCenter Add-in always creates a new sheet to keep the Excel sheet clean. You can also choose to always create a new sheet by clicking on Options and selecting Display Settings.
25. How do I compare the scores from two different functions?
Comparing scores from different functions is not meaningful since different functions have different algorithms that don’t use the same scales for their scores.
26. Is adCenter Add-in information only derived from MSN data?
The Traffic and Monetization features are derived from MSN data exclusively. With the exclusion of the traffic and monetization features our functions utilize data collected from crawling the Worldwide Web.
27. What is the taxonomy used for Keyword Categorization?
The Microsoft Contextual Taxonomy is used for this function.
28. For results derived from the Monetization feature, why is it that sometimes the impression count is vastly different for Positions 1, 2, and 3 for terms with high-bid density?
There are different match types for the same keyword and it is possible to have different impressions for keywords served.
For example, the query “red shoes” could result in the following keywords being served:
Position 1: red shoes
Position 2: shoes
Position 3: red shoes
A second search for “red shoes” could have results like this:
Position 1: shoes
Position 2: shoes
Position 3: red shoes
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Monetization would show the following information:
keyword
position
impressions
red shoes
1
1
red shoes
2
0
red shoes
3
2
shoes
1
1
shoes
2
2
shoes
3
0
29. How are the impression numbers different between adCenter Add-in forecast data and the research tab data in adCenter?
The monthly forecast is based on an algorithm incorporating significant historical exact match search query data (not impression data). The Microsoft adCenter research tab provides projected numbers based on recent impression counts which could be different from the query counts based on match type. The projected data in adCenter and the forecasted traffic numbers in the Add-in will not match as a result of this.
30. How accurate is monthly traffic forecasting and how is it done?
The forecasting is based on several algorithms, which includes historical data. Forecasting and the other algorithms are checked regularly and updates are applied in order to try to make the best predictions possible. That said, historical trends may change over time and this would cause future results to deviate from past performance.
31. Are the keyword expansion tools (Keyword Wizard / Extraction / Suggestion) based on actual search queries or keywords in adCenter?
Keyword suggestions are based on Web data and are not limited to search queries.
32. Can keywords be classified into more than one category (e.g. “apple” can be both a fruit and a technology brand)?
Keywords can be in multiple categories. By default, the application provides multiple categories, sorted by confidence.
Using the adCenter Add-in
33. How can I use the adCenter Add-in to quickly generate relevant keywords to describe my web sites?
Relevant keywords can be quickly generated either by using the Keyword Wizard or by using the Keyword Extraction feature. The Keyword Extraction feature extracts commonly used keywords from the selected website addresses, which allows the user to see what keywords are in popular use on those sites.
34. How can I use the adCenter Add-in to quickly create or expand a list of relevant keywords?
Relevant keywords can be quickly generated either by using the Keyword Wizard or by using the Keyword Suggestion feature. The user simply enters a list of keywords into Excel and the Keyword Suggestion feature will generate relevant keywords based on one or more of the following three algorithms:
Campaign Association: • keywords are suggested based on advertisers’ keyword bidding behavior.
Contained:• keywords are suggested based on past user searches that contained those keywords.
Similarity: • keywords that are similar in context to other keywords used in the World Wide Web.
35. How can I use the adCenter Add-in to forecast keyword search traffic?
The keyword search traffic can be forecasted 1, 3, 6 or 12 months into the future, either through the Keyword Wizard or by selecting the Monthly Traffic feature. Both the historical queries (searches) for the past 12 months and the forecasted quotes for the upcoming 1, 3, 6 or 12 months are shown for each keyword.
36. How can I use the adCenter Add-in to understand the seasonality of keyword searches?
Viewing historical trends of keyword searches provides insight into the seasonality of keyword searches, which can be done by using the Monthly Traffic feature.
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37. How can I use the adCenter Add-in to understand the localization of keyword searches?
Through the Geographic feature, you can view the number of searches for selected keywords by city, state or country, for up to 10 locations over various time periods. These settings can be temporarily or permanently changed through the Options feature or through the Advanced Algorithm feature.
38. How can I use the adCenter Add-in to understand the demographics of keyword searches?
You can view the breakdown of searches in percent by gender and age group through the use of the Demographics feature. It is possible to obtain this data for a range of time periods, which can be selected through the Advanced Algorithm or Options feature.
39. How can I use the adCenter Add-in to obtain KPIs for keywords, such as CTR, CPC, Impressions, and Position?
Keyword KPIs can be obtained through the Monetization feature.
Support
40. Where else can I learn more about the most recent updates to the adCenter Add-in?
You can visit the adCenter forum to learn more about the most recent updates to the adCenter Add-in.
41. Who do I contact for adCenter Add-in support?
If you have questions about Microsoft adCenter or the adCenter Add-in, please contact our support team by accessing the adCenter Add-in forum.
42. Where can I find adCenter Add-in support information?
You can find adCenter Add-in support information on the adCenter website.
43. How do I provide feedback and how can I suggest new features for the adCenter Add-in? (Excel 2007)
Premium: We value and appreciate your feedback. It is a critical component to the success of the adCenter Add-in. Please contact your account representative with any comments; however, feel free to provide feedback at any time by accessing the adCenter Add-in forum.
Troubleshooting
44. Why can’t I find my adCenter Add-in tab in the Excel ribbon? (Excel 2007)
First, please validate that you’ve successfully installed the Microsoft adCenter Add-in by looking in your Start menu, under All Programs, for the Microsoft adCenter Add-in for Excel 2.0. If you successfully find the Add-in installed, return to Excel, and open Excel Options as shown in Figure 1 below.
Figure1
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Select Add-ins and then select COM Add-ins in the Manage box as shown in Figure 2.
After you’ve selected COM Add-ins, click Go. A dialog box called Com Add-ins will be displayed. Check adCenter Add-in and click the OK button.
**Workaround: If the above steps do not work, please uninstall the adCenter Add-in and reinstall.
45. I’ve successfully installed the adCenter Add-in, but when I run it I get an error message regarding “invalid user authorization.” How do I resolve this? (Excel 2007)
Please perform the following steps:
1. Click the Ad Intelligence tab to display the adCenter Add-in ribbon.
2. Click the Options button.
3. Under KSP Settings, click KSP Server.
4. Next, enter your username and password.
5. In the KSP Server dialog box, specify the Cloud Server address
https://kspv2.microsoft.com/ServiceContainer and click Test to verify your connection.
6. Click OK.
Figure2
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46. How do you Optimize your campaign with the adCenter Add-in Beta for Excel?
The adCenter Add-inBeta is a keyword research and optimization tool, based in Excel and includes the Ad Intelligence model, which enables you to:
Easily and quickly build out or expand keyword lists•
Effectively plan keyword strategy based relevance, cost history, volume, demographics, geography, and more. •
Forecast monthly and daily keyword impressions and future trends.

Download the adCenter Add-inBeta today to start researching keywords to help reach the right audience—and capture and convert the right customer.
Microsoft adCenter Add-In Beta for Excel 2003 is here!
We now have the Add-in for Excel 2003 users. Download the latest version here and give it a try!
II. Glossary of Key Terms
API
Application programming interface: the Microsoft adCenter API enables you to programmatically access adCenter to create and manage advertising campaigns that are run on the Internet.
Beta
The adCenter Add-in will remain in Beta as we work to provide additional features and functionality. The product is fully functional and we’re excited to offer keyword optimization, search impression forecasting, monetization and other powerful features.
Category
The category provides the industry that the keyword or URL is affiliated with, based on our taxonomy.
Cloud Server
A technology that automatically distributes user queries to a farm of servers.
CPC
Cost-per-click: the advertiser only pays when the consumer clicks on their ad.
Crawl
Terminology used to describe how a search engine moves through the Internet by following links, in order to download web page content.
Confidence
This represents the confidence we have in a result generated by the tool, and ranges from 0 (not confident) to 1 (very confident).
CTR
Click Through Rate: the percentage of those clicking on a link out of the total number of those who see the link, which reflects the efficiency of the ad investment.
Impressions
Impressions in the adCenter Add-in are the number of instances that an ad was served on Live Search.
KPI
Key Performance Indicators: they are pre-defined, quantifiable measurements that reflect the critical success factors of a business or organization.
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KSP
Keyword Services Platform: the platform from adCenter that allows third-party developers to build applications through standardized APIs to analyze keywords and websites and optimize campaigns.
Match type: Exact, Phrase, Broad
When using the Keyword Wizard to determine the Monetization of keywords, it is possible to select various match types:
Exact: the output will only return information for those keywords that you input, in the exact order, with no additional keywords and with no spelling variations.
Phrase: the output will reflect keywords resulting from when users search on the exact phrase and also when their search contains additional terms, as long as the keyword phrase is in exactly the same order.
Broad: matches are often less targeted than exact or phrase matches. The output returned will include any keywords that contain the same keywords you have input, in any order, and possibly along with other terms.
Position
This represents the position of the displayed ads on the page of the Live Search page results. There are eight possible positions on any Live Search page — three at the top of the page and five along the right hand side.
Search Query
A search performed on Live.com.
Spiky Index
The Spiky index is a relative measurement of how popular a keyword has become. The index has a relatively wide scale, which ensures that keywords with very large search impressions do not drown out keywords with a small amount of search impressions. The higher this index, the more the keyword has surged.
Spiky Keywords
Spiky keywords are keywords that have shown a recent surge in popularity, which may be short-lived. For example, Halloween is a typical spiky keyword, as its popularity surges around October each year.
SpikyStartDate
This represents the date when the keyword began to surge in popularity.
SpikyEndDate
This represents the date when the keyword’s surge in popularity ended.

Posted bySumedh at 2:26 AM 0 comments  

Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide

Welcome to Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide. This document first began as an
effort to help teams within Google, but we thought it'd be just as useful to webmasters that are new to
the topic of search engine optimization and wish to improve their sites' interaction with both users and
search engines. Although this guide won't tell you any secrets that'll automatically rank your site first
for queries in Google (sorry!), following the best practices outlined below will make it easier for search
engines to both crawl and index your content.
Search engine optimization is often about making small modifications to parts of your website. When
viewed individually, these changes might seem like incremental improvements, but when combined
with other optimizations, they could have a noticeable impact on your site's user experience and
performance in organic search results. You're likely already familiar with many of the topics in this
guide, because they're essential ingredients for any webpage, but you may not be making the most
out of them.
Search engine optimization affects only organic search results, not paid or "sponsored" results,
such as Google AdWords
Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008
Even though this guide's title contains the words "search engine", we'd like to say that you should
base your optimization decisions first and foremost on what's best for the visitors of your site. They're
the main consumers of your content and are using search engines to find your work. Focusing too
hard on specific tweaks to gain ranking in the organic results of search engines may not deliver the
desired results. Search engine optimization is about putting your site's best foot forward when it
comes to visibility in search engines.
An example may help our explanations, so we've created a fictitious website to follow throughout the
guide. For each topic, we've fleshed out enough information about the site to illustrate the point being
covered. Here's some background information about the site we'll use:
• Website/business name: "Brandon's Baseball Cards"
• Domain name: brandonsbaseballcards.com
• Focus: Online-only baseball card sales, price guides, articles, and news content
• Size: Small, ~250 pages
Your site may be smaller or larger than this and offer vastly different content, but the optimization
topics we discussed below should apply to sites of all sizes and types.
We hope our guide gives you some fresh ideas on how to improve your website, and we'd love to
hear your questions, feedback, and success stories in the Google Webmaster Help Group.
Create unique, accurate page titles
A title tag tells both users and search engines what the topic of a particular page is. The tag <br />should be placed within the <head> tag of the HTML document. Ideally, you should create a unique <br />title for each page on your site. <br />The title of the homepage for our baseball card site, which lists the business name and three <br />main focus areas <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />If your document appears in a search results page, the contents of the title tag will usually appear in <br />the first line of the results (If you're unfamiliar with the different parts of a Google search result, you <br />might want to check out the anatomy of a search result video by Google engineer Matt Cutts, and this <br />helpful diagram of a Google search results page.) Words in the title are bolded if they appear in the <br />user's search query. This can help users recognize if the page is likely to be relevant to their search. <br />The title for your homepage can list the name of your website/business and could include other bits of <br />important information like the physical location of the business or maybe a few of its main focuses or <br />offerings. <br />A user performs the query [baseball cards] <br />Our homepage shows up as a result, with the title listed on the first line (notice that the query <br />terms the user searched for appear in bold) <br />If the user clicks the result and visits the page, the page's title will appear at the top of the <br />browser <br />Titles for deeper pages on your site should accurately describe the focus of that particular page and <br />also might include your site or business name. <br />A user performs the query [rarest baseball cards] <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />A relevant, deeper page (its title is unique to the content of the page) on our site appears as a <br />result <br />Good practices for page title tags <br />• Accurately describe the page's content - Choose a title that effectively communicates the <br />topic of the page's content. <br />Avoid: <br />• choosing a title that has no relation to the content on the page <br />• using default or vague titles like "Untitled" or "New Page 1" <br />• Create unique title tags for each page - Each of your pages should ideally have a unique <br />title tag, which helps Google know how the page is distinct from the others on your site. <br />Avoid: <br />• using a single title tag across all of your site's pages or a large group of pages <br />• Use brief, but descriptive titles - Titles can be both short and informative. If the title is too <br />long, Google will show only a portion of it in the search result. <br />Avoid: <br />• using extremely lengthy titles that are unhelpful to users <br />• stuffing unneeded keywords in your title tags <br />Make use of the "description" meta tag <br />A page's description meta tag gives Google and other search engines a summary of what the page is <br />about. Whereas a page's title may be a few words or a phrase, a page's description meta tag might <br />be a sentence or two or a short paragraph. Google Webmaster Tools provides a handy content <br />analysis section that'll tell you about any description meta tags that are either too short, long, or <br />duplicated too many times (the same information is also shown for <title> tags). Like the <title> tag, <br />the description meta tag is placed within the <head> tag of your HTML document. <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />The beginning of the description meta tag for our homepage, which gives a brief overview of <br />the site's offerings <br />Description meta tags are important because Google might use them as snippets for your pages. <br />Note that we say "might" because Google may choose to use a relevant section of your page's visible <br />text if it does a good job of matching up with a user's query. Alternatively, Google might use your site's <br />description in the Open Directory Project if your site is listed there (learn how to prevent search <br />engines from displaying ODP data). Adding description meta tags to each of your pages is always a <br />good practice in case Google cannot find a good selection of text to use in the snippet. The <br />Webmaster Central Blog has an informative post on improving snippets with better description meta <br />tags. <br />Snippets appear under a page's title and above a page's URL in a search result. <br />A user performs the query [baseball cards] <br />Our homepage appears as a result, with part of its description meta tag used as the snippet <br />Words in the snippet are bolded when they appear in the user's query. This gives the user clues about <br />whether the content on the page matches with what he or she is looking for. Below is another <br />example, this time showing a snippet from a description meta tag on a deeper page (which ideally has <br />its own unique description meta tag) containing an article. <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />A user performs the query [rarest baseball cards] <br />One of our deeper pages, with its unique description meta tag used as the snippet, appears as <br />a result <br />Good practices for description meta tags <br />• Accurately summarize the page's content - Write a description that would both inform and <br />interest users if they saw your description meta tag as a snippet in a search result. <br />Avoid: <br />• writing a description meta tag that has no relation to the content on the page <br />• using generic descriptions like "This is a webpage" or "Page about baseball <br />cards" <br />• filling the description with only keywords <br />• copy and pasting the entire content of the document into the description meta <br />tag <br />• Use unique descriptions for each page - Having a different description meta tag for each <br />page helps both users and Google, especially in searches where users may bring up <br />multiple pages on your domain (e.g. searches using the site: operator). If your site has <br />thousands or even millions of pages, hand-crafting description meta tags probably isn't <br />feasible. In this case, you could automatically generate description meta tags based on <br />each page's content. <br />Avoid: <br />• using a single description meta tag across all of your site's pages or a large <br />group of pages <br />Improve the structure of your URLs <br />Creating descriptive categories and filenames for the documents on your website can not only help <br />you keep your site better organized, but it could also lead to better crawling of your documents by <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />search engines. Also, it can create easier, "friendlier" URLs for those that want to link to your content. <br />Visitors may be intimidated by extremely long and cryptic URLs that contain few recognizable words. <br />A URL to a page on our baseball card site that a user might have a hard time with <br />URLs like these can be confusing and unfriendly. Users would have a hard time reciting the URL from <br />memory or creating a link to it. Also, users may believe that a portion of the URL is unnecessary, <br />especially if the URL shows many unrecognizable parameters. They might leave off a part, breaking <br />the link. <br />Some users might link to your page using the URL of that page as the anchor text. If your URL <br />contains relevant words, this provides users and search engines with more information about the <br />page than an ID or oddly named parameter would. <br />The highlighted words above could inform a user or search engine what the target page is <br />about before following the link <br />Lastly, remember that the URL to a document is displayed as part of a search result in Google, below <br />the document's title and snippet. Like the title and snippet, words in the URL on the search result <br />appear in bold if they appear in the user's query. <br />A user performs the query [baseball cards] <br />Our homepage appears as a result, with the URL listed under the title and snippet <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />Below is another example showing a URL on our domain for a page containing an article about the <br />rarest baseball cards. The words in the URL might appeal to a search user more than an ID number <br />like "www.brandonsbaseballcards.com/article/102125/" would. <br />A user performs the query [rarest baseball cards] <br />A deeper page, with a URL that reflects the type of content found on it, appears as a result <br />Google is good at crawling all types of URL structures, even if they're quite complex, but spending the <br />time to make your URLs as simple as possible for both users and search engines can help. Some <br />webmasters try to achieve this by rewriting their dynamic URLs to static ones; while Google is fine <br />with this, we'd like to note that this is an advanced procedure and if done incorrectly, could cause <br />crawling issues with your site. To learn even more about good URL structure, we recommend this <br />Webmaster Help Center page on creating Google-friendly URLs. <br />Good practices for URL structure <br />• Use words in URLs - URLs with words that are relevant to your site's content and structure <br />are friendlier for visitors navigating your site. Visitors remember them better and might be <br />more willing to link to them. <br />Avoid: <br />• using lengthy URLs with unnecessary parameters and session IDs <br />• choosing generic page names like "page1.html" <br />• using excessive keywords like "baseball-cards-baseball-cards-baseballcards. <br />htm" <br />• Create a simple directory structure - Use a directory structure that organizes your content <br />well and is easy for visitors to know where they're at on your site. Try using your directory <br />structure to indicate the type of content found at that URL. <br />Avoid: <br />• having deep nesting of subdirectories like ".../dir1/dir2/dir3/dir4/dir5/dir6/ <br />page.html" <br />• using directory names that have no relation to the content in them <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />• Provide one version of a URL to reach a document - To prevent users from linking to one <br />version of a URL and others linking to a different version (this could split the reputation of <br />that content between the URLs), focus on using and referring to one URL in the structure <br />and internal linking of your pages. If you do find that people are accessing the same content <br />through multiple URLs, setting up a 301 redirect from non-preferred URLs to the dominant <br />URL is a good solution for this. <br />Avoid: <br />• having pages from subdomains and the root directory (e.g. "domain.com/ <br />page.htm" and "sub.domain.com/page.htm") access the same content <br />• mixing www. and non-www. versions of URLs in your internal linking structure <br />• using odd capitalization of URLs (many users expect lower-case URLs and <br />remember them better) <br />Make your site easier to navigate <br />The navigation of a website is important in helping visitors quickly find the content they want. It can <br />also help search engines understand what content the webmaster thinks is important. Although <br />Google's search results are provided at a page level, Google also likes to have a sense of what role a <br />page plays in the bigger picture of the site. <br />All sites have a home or "root" page, which is usually the most frequented page on the site and the <br />starting place of navigation for many visitors. Unless your site has only a handful of pages, you should <br />think about how visitors will go from a general page (your root page) to a page containing more <br />specific content. Do you have enough pages around a specific topic area that it would make sense to <br />create a page describing these related pages (e.g. root page -> related topic listing -> specific topic)? <br />Do you have hundreds of different products that need to be classified under multiple category and <br />subcategory pages? <br />The directory structure for our small website on baseball cards <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />A sitemap (lower-case) is a simple page on your site that displays the structure of your website, and <br />usually consists of a hierarchical listing of the pages on your site. Visitors may visit this page if they <br />are having problems finding pages on your site. While search engines will also visit this page, getting <br />good crawl coverage of the pages on your site, it's mainly aimed at human visitors. <br />An XML Sitemap (upper-case) file, which you can submit through Google's Webmaster Tools, makes <br />it easier for Google to discover the pages on your site. Using a Sitemap file is also one way (though <br />not guaranteed) to tell Google which version of a URL you'd prefer as the canonical one (e.g. <br />http://brandonsbaseballcards.com/ or http://www.brandonsbaseballcards.com/; more on what's a <br />preferred domain). Google helped create the open source Sitemap Generator script to help you <br />create a Sitemap file for your site. To learn more about Sitemaps, the Webmaster Help Center <br />provides a useful guide to Sitemap files. <br />Good practices for site navigation <br />• Create a naturally flowing hierarchy - Make it as easy as possible for users to go from <br />general content to the more specific content they want on your site. Add navigation pages <br />when it makes sense and effectively work these into your internal link structure. <br />Avoid: <br />• creating complex webs of navigation links, e.g. linking every page on your site <br />to every other page <br />• going overboard with slicing and dicing your content (it takes twenty clicks to <br />get to deep content) <br />• Use mostly text for navigation - Controlling most of the navigation from page to page on <br />your site through text links makes it easier for search engines to crawl and understand your <br />site. Many users also prefer this over other approaches, especially on some devices that <br />might not handle Flash or JavaScript. <br />Avoid: <br />• having a navigation based entirely on drop-down menus, images, or <br />animations (many, but not all, search engines can discover such links on a site, <br />but if a user can reach all pages on a site via normal text links, this will improve <br />the accessibility of your site; more on how Google deals with non-text files) <br />• Use "breadcrumb" navigation - A breadcrumb is a row of internal links at the top or bottom <br />of the page that allows visitors to quickly navigate back to a previous section or the root <br />page. Many breadcrumbs have the most general page (usually the root page) as the first, <br />left-most link and list the more specific sections out to the right. <br />Breadcrumb links appearing on a deeper article page on our site <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />• Put an HTML sitemap page on your site, and use an XML Sitemap file - A simple <br />sitemap page with links to all of the pages or the most important pages (if you have <br />hundreds or thousands) on your site can be useful. Creating an XML Sitemap file for your <br />site helps ensure that search engines discover the pages on your site. <br />Avoid: <br />• letting your HTML sitemap page become out of date with broken links <br />• creating an HTML sitemap that simply lists pages without organizing them, for <br />example by subject <br />• Consider what happens when a user removes part of your URL - Some users might <br />navigate your site in odd ways, and you should anticipate this. For example, instead of using <br />the breadcrumb links on the page, a user might drop off a part of the URL in the hopes of <br />finding more general content. He or she might be visiting <br />http://www.brandonsbaseballcards.com/news/2008/upcoming-baseball-card-shows.htm, but <br />then enter http://www.brandonsbaseballcards.com/news/2008/ into the browser's address <br />bar, believing that this will show all news from 2008. Is your site prepared to show content in <br />this situation or will it give the user a 404 ("page not found" error)? What about moving up a <br />directory level to http://www.brandonsbaseballcards.com/news/? <br />• Have a useful 404 page - Users will occasionally come to a page that doesn't exist on your <br />site, either by following a broken link or typing in the wrong URL. Having a custom 404 page <br />that kindly guides users back to a working page on your site can greatly improve a user's <br />experience. Your 404 page should probably have a link back to your root page and could <br />also provide links to popular or related content on your site. Google provides a 404 widget <br />that you can embed in your 404 page to automatically populate it with many useful features. <br />You can also use Google Webmaster Tools to find the sources of URLs causing "not found" <br />errors. <br />Avoid: <br />• allowing your 404 pages to be indexed in search engines (make sure that your <br />webserver is configured to give a 404 HTTP status code when non-existent <br />pages are requested) <br />• providing only a vague message like "Not found", "404", or no 404 page at all <br />• using a design for your 404 pages that isn't consistent with the rest of your site <br />Offer quality content and services <br />Creating compelling and useful content will likely influence your website more than any of the other <br />factors discussed here. Users know good content when they see it and will likely want to direct other <br />users to it. This could be through blog posts, social media services, email, forums, or other means. <br />Organic or word-of-mouth buzz is what helps build your site's reputation with both users and Google, <br />and it rarely comes without quality content. <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />A blogger finds a piece of your content, likes it, and then references it in a blog post <br />While the content you create could be on any topic imaginable, here are some recommended best <br />practices: <br />Good practices for content <br />• Write easy-to-read text - Users enjoy content that is well written and easy to follow. <br />Avoid: <br />• writing sloppy text with many spelling and grammatical mistakes <br />• embedding text in images for textual content (users may want to copy and <br />paste the text and search engines can't read it) <br />• Stay organized around the topic - It's always beneficial to organize your content so that <br />visitors have a good sense of where one content topic begins and another ends. Breaking <br />your content up into logical chunks or divisions helps users find the content they want faster. <br />Avoid: <br />• dumping large amounts of text on varying topics onto a page without <br />paragraph, subheading, or layout separation <br />• Use relevant language - Think about the words that a user might search for to find a piece <br />of your content. Users who know a lot about the topic might use different keywords in their <br />search queries than someone who is new to the topic. For example, a long-time baseball fan <br />might search for [nlcs], an acronym for the National League Championship Series, while a <br />new fan might use a more general query like [baseball playoffs]. Anticipating these <br />differences in search behavior and accounting for them while writing your content (using a <br />good mix of keyword phrases) could produce positive results. Google AdWords provides a <br />handy Keyword Tool that helps you discover new keyword variations and see the <br />approximate search volume for each keyword. Also, Google Webmaster Tools provides you <br />with the top search queries your site appears for and the ones that led the most users to <br />your site. <br />• Create fresh, unique content - New content will not only keep your existing visitor base <br />coming back, but also bring in new visitors. <br />Avoid: <br />• rehashing (or even copying) existing content that will bring little extra value to <br />users <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />• having duplicate or near-duplicate versions of your content across your site <br />(more on duplicate content) <br />• Offer exclusive content or services - Consider creating a new, useful service that no other <br />site offers. You could also write an original piece of research, break an exciting news story, <br />or leverage your unique user base. Other sites may lack the resources or expertise to do <br />these things. <br />• Create content primarily for your users, not search engines - Designing your site around <br />your visitors' needs while making sure your site is easily accessible to search engines <br />usually produces positive results. <br />Avoid: <br />• inserting numerous unnecessary keywords aimed at search engines but are <br />annoying or nonsensical to users <br />• having blocks of text like "frequent misspellings used to reach this page" that <br />add little value for users <br />• deceptively hiding text from users, but displaying it to search engines <br />Write better anchor text <br />Anchor text is the clickable text that users will see as a result of a link, and is placed within the anchor <br />tag <a href="..."></a>. <br />This anchor text accurately describes the content on one of our article pages <br />This text tells users and Google something about the page you're linking to. Links on your page may <br />be internal—pointing to other pages on your site—or external—leading to content on other sites. In <br />either of these cases, the better your anchor text is, the easier it is for users to navigate and for <br />Google to understand what the page you're linking to is about. <br />Good practices for anchor text <br />• Choose descriptive text - The anchor text you use for a link should provide at least a basic <br />idea of what the page linked to is about. <br />Avoid: <br />• writing generic anchor text like "page", "article", or "click here" <br />• using text that is off-topic or has no relation to the content of the page linked to <br />• using the page's URL as the anchor text in most cases (although there are <br />certainly legitimate uses of this, such as promoting or referencing a new <br />website's address) <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />• Write concise text - Aim for short but descriptive text—usually a few words or a short <br />phrase. <br />Avoid: <br />• writing long anchor text, such as a lengthy sentence or short paragraph of text <br />• Format links so they're easy to spot - Make it easy for users to distinguish between <br />regular text and the anchor text of your links. Your content becomes less useful if users <br />miss the links or accidentally click them. <br />Avoid: <br />• using CSS or text styling that make links look just like regular text <br />• Think about anchor text for internal links too - You may usually think about linking in <br />terms of pointing to outside websites, but paying more attention to the anchor text used for <br />internal links can help users and Google navigate your site better. <br />Avoid: <br />• using excessively keyword-filled or lengthy anchor text just for search engines <br />• creating unnecessary links that don't help with the user's navigation of the site <br />Use heading tags appropriately <br />Heading tags (not to be confused with the <head> HTML tag or HTTP headers) are used to present <br />structure on the page to users. There are six sizes of heading tags, beginning with <h1>, the most <br />important, and ending with <h6>, the least important. <br />On a page containing a news story, we might put the name of our site into an <h1> tag and the <br />topic of the story into an <h2> tag <br />Since heading tags typically make text contained in them larger than normal text on the page, this is a <br />visual cue to users that this text is important and could help them understand something about the <br />type of content underneath the heading text. Multiple heading sizes used in order create a hierarchical <br />structure for your content, making it easier for users to navigate through your document. <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />Good practices for heading tags <br />• Imagine you're writing an outline - Similar to writing an outline for a large paper, put some <br />thought into what the main points and sub-points of the content on the page will be and <br />decide where to use heading tags appropriately. <br />Avoid: <br />• placing text in heading tags that wouldn't be helpful in defining the structure of <br />the page <br />• using heading tags where other tags like <em> and <strong> may be more <br />appropriate <br />• erratically moving from one heading tag size to another <br />• Use headings sparingly across the page - Use heading tags where it makes sense. Too <br />many heading tags on a page can make it hard for users to scan the content and determine <br />where one topic ends and another begins. <br />Avoid: <br />• excessively using heading tags throughout the page <br />• putting all of the page's text into a heading tag <br />• using heading tags only for styling text and not presenting structure <br />Optimize your use of images <br />Images may seem like a straightforward component of your site, but you can optimize your use of <br />them. All images can have a distinct filename and "alt" attribute, both of which you should take <br />advantage of. <br />The "alt" attribute allows you to specify alternative text for the image if it cannot be displayed for some <br />reason. <br />Our alt text here is a brief but accurate description of the image <br />Why use this attribute? If a user is viewing your site on a browser that doesn't support images, or is <br />using alternative technologies, such as a screen reader, the contents of the alt attribute provide <br />information about the picture. <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />Our image wasn't displayed to the user for some reason, but at least the alt text was <br />Another reason is that if you're using an image as a link, the alt text for that image will be treated <br />similarly to the anchor text of a text link. However, we don't recommend using too many images for <br />links in your site's navigation when text links could serve the same purpose. Lastly, optimizing your <br />image filenames and alt text makes it easier for image search projects like Google Image Search to <br />better understand your images. <br />Good practices for images <br />• Use brief, but descriptive filenames and alt text - Like many of the other parts of the page <br />targeted for optimization, filenames and alt text (for ASCII languages) are best when they're <br />short, but descriptive. <br />Avoid: <br />• using generic filenames like "image1.jpg", "pic.gif", "1.jpg" when possible <br />(some sites with thousands of images might consider automating the naming of <br />images) <br />• writing extremely lengthy filenames <br />• stuffing keywords into alt text or copying and pasting entire sentences <br />• Supply alt text when using images as links - If you do decide to use an image as a link, <br />filling out its alt text helps Google understand more about the page you're linking to. Imagine <br />that you're writing anchor text for a text link. <br />Avoid: <br />• writing excessively long alt text that would be considered spammy <br />• using only image links for your site's navigation <br />• Store images in a directory of their own - Instead of having image files spread out in <br />numerous directories and subdirectories across your domain, consider consolidating your <br />images into a single directory (e.g. brandonsbaseballcards.com/images/). This simplifies the <br />path to your images. <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />• Use commonly supported filetypes - Most browsers support JPEG, GIF, PNG, and BMP <br />image formats. It's also a good idea to have the extension of your filename match with the <br />filetype. <br />Make effective use of robots.txt <br />A "robots.txt" file tells search engines whether they can access and therefore crawl parts of your <br />site. This file, which must be named "robots.txt", is placed in the root directory of your site. <br />The address of our robots.txt file <br />All compliant search engine bots (denoted by the wildcard * symbol) shouldn't access and <br />crawl the content under /images/ or any URL whose path begins with /search <br />You may not want certain pages of your site crawled because they might not be useful to users if <br />found in a search engine's search results. If you do want to prevent search engines from crawling <br />your pages, Google Webmaster Tools has a friendly robots.txt generator to help you create this file. <br />Note that if your site uses subdomains and you wish to have certain pages not crawled on a particular <br />subdomain, you'll have to create a separate robots.txt file for that subdomain. For more information <br />on robots.txt, we suggest this Webmaster Help Center guide on using robots.txt files. <br />There are a handful of other ways to prevent content appearing in search results, such as adding <br />"NOINDEX" to your robots meta tag, using .htaccess to password protect directories, and using <br />Google Webmaster Tools to remove content that has already been crawled. Google engineer Matt <br />Cutts walks through the caveats of each URL blocking method in a helpful video. <br />Good practices for robots.txt <br />• Use more secure methods for sensitive content - You shouldn't feel comfortable using <br />robots.txt to block sensitive or confidential material. One reason is that search engines could <br />still reference the URLs you block (showing just the URL, no title or snippet) if there happen <br />to be links to those URLs somewhere on the Internet (like referrer logs). Also, non-compliant <br />or rogue search engines that don't acknowledge the Robots Exclusion Standard could <br />disobey the instructions of your robots.txt. Finally, a curious user could examine the <br />directories or subdirectories in your robots.txt file and guess the URL of the content that you <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />don't want seen. Encrypting the content or password-protecting it with .htaccess are more <br />secure alternatives. <br />Avoid: <br />• allowing search result-like pages to be crawled (users dislike leaving one <br />search result page and landing on another search result page that doesn't add <br />significant value for them) <br />• allowing a large number of auto-generated pages with the same or only slightly <br />different content to be crawled: "Should these 100,000 near-duplicate pages <br />really be in a search engine's index?" <br />• allowing URLs created as a result of proxy services to be crawled <br />Be aware of rel="nofollow" for links <br />Setting the value of the "rel" attribute of a link to "nofollow" will tell Google that certain links on your <br />site shouldn't be followed or pass your page's reputation to the pages linked to. Nofollowing a link is <br />adding rel="nofollow" inside of the link's anchor tag. <br />If you link to a site that you don't trust and don't want to pass your site's reputation to, use <br />nofollow <br />When would this be useful? If your site has a blog with public commenting turned on, links within <br />those comments could pass your reputation to pages that you may not be comfortable vouching for. <br />Blog comment areas on pages are highly susceptible to comment spam. Nofollowing these useradded <br />links ensures that you're not giving your page's hard-earned reputation to a spammy site. Many <br />blogging software packages automatically nofollow user comments, but those that don't can most <br />likely be manually edited to do this. This advice also goes for other areas of your site that may involve <br />user-generated content, such as guestbooks, forums, shout-boards, referrer listings, etc. If you're <br />willing to vouch for links added by third parties (e.g. if a commenter is trusted on your site), then <br />there's no need to use nofollow on links; however, linking to sites that Google considers spammy can <br />affect the reputation of your own site. The Webmaster Help Center has more tips on avoiding <br />comment spam, like using CAPTCHAs and turning on comment moderation. <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />A comment spammer leaves a message on one of our news posts, hoping to get some of our <br />site's reputation <br />Another use of nofollow is when you're writing content and wish to reference a website, but don't want <br />to pass your reputation on to it. For example, imagine that you're writing a blog post on the topic of <br />comment spamming and you want to call out a site that recently comment spammed your blog. You <br />want to warn others of the site, so you include the link to it in your content; however, you certainly <br />don't want to give the site some of your reputation from your link. This would be a good time to use <br />nofollow. <br />Lastly, if you're interested in nofollowing all of the links on a page, you can use "nofollow" in your <br />robots meta tag, which is placed inside the <head> tag of that page's HTML. The Webmaster Central <br />Blog provides a helpful post on using the robots meta tag. This method is written as <meta <br />name="robots" content="nofollow">. <br />This nofollows all of the links on a page <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />Promote your website in the right ways <br />While most of the links to your site will be gained gradually, as people discover your content through <br />search or other ways and link to it, Google understands that you'd like to let others know about the <br />hard work you've put into your content. Effectively promoting your new content will lead to faster <br />discovery by those who are interested in the same subject. As with most points covered in this <br />document, taking these recommendations to an extreme could actually harm the reputation of your <br />site. <br />Good practices for promoting your website <br />• Blog about new content or services - A blog post on your own site letting your visitor base <br />know that you added something new is a great way to get the word out about new content or <br />services. Other webmasters who follow your site or RSS feed could pick the story up as well. <br />• Don't forget about offline promotion - Putting effort into the offline promotion of your <br />company or site can also be rewarding. For example, if you have a business site, make sure <br />its URL is listed on your business cards, letterhead, posters, etc. You could also send out <br />recurring newsletters to clients through the mail letting them know about new content on the <br />company's website. <br />• Know about social media sites - Sites built around user interaction and sharing have made <br />it easier to match interested groups of people up with relevant content. <br />Avoid: <br />• attempting to promote each new, small piece of content you create; go for big, <br />interesting items <br />• involving your site in schemes where your content is artificially promoted to the <br />top of these services <br />• Add your business to Google's Local Business Center - If you run a local business, <br />adding its information to Google's Local Business Center will help you reach customers on <br />Google Maps and web search. The Webmaster Help Center has more tips on promoting <br />your local business. <br />• Reach out to those in your site's related community - Chances are, there are a number <br />of sites that cover topic areas similar to yours. Opening up communication with these sites is <br />usually beneficial. Hot topics in your niche or community could spark additional ideas for <br />content or building a good community resource. <br />Avoid: <br />• spamming link requests out to all sites related to your topic area <br />• purchasing links from another site with the aim of getting PageRank instead of <br />traffic <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />Make use of free webmaster tools <br />Major search engines, including Google, provide free tools for webmasters. Google's Webmaster <br />Tools help webmasters better control how Google interacts with their websites and get useful <br />information from Google about their site. Using Webmaster Tools won't help your site get preferential <br />treatment; however, it can help you identify issues that, if addressed, can help your site perform better <br />in search results. With the service, webmasters can: <br />• see which parts of a site Googlebot had problems crawling <br />• upload an XML Sitemap file <br />• analyze and generate robots.txt files <br />• remove URLs already crawled by Googlebot <br />• specify the preferred domain <br />• identify issues with title and description meta tags <br />• understand the top searches used to reach a site <br />• get a glimpse at how Googlebot sees pages <br />• remove unwanted sitelinks that Google may use in results <br />• receive notification of quality guideline violations and file for a site reconsideration <br />Yahoo! (Yahoo! Site Explorer) and Microsoft (Live Search Webmaster Tools) also offer free tools for <br />webmasters. <br />Take advantage of web analytics services <br />If you've improved the crawling and indexing of your site using Google Webmasters Tools or other <br />services, you're probably curious about the traffic coming to your site. Web analytics programs like <br />Google Analytics are a valuable source of insight for this. You can use these to: <br />• get insight into how users reach and behave on your site <br />• discover the most popular content on your site <br />• measure the impact of optimizations you make to your site (e.g. did changing those title and <br />description meta tags improve traffic from search engines?) <br />For advanced users, the information an analytics package provides, combined with data from your <br />server log files, can provide even more comprehensive information about how visitors are interacting <br />with your documents (such as additional keywords that searchers might use to find your site). <br />Lastly, Google offers another tool called Google Website Optimizer that allows you to run experiments <br />to find what on-page changes will produce the best conversion rates with visitors. This, in combination <br />with Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools (see our video on using the "Google Trifecta"), is <br />a powerful way to begin improving your site. <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008 <br />Helpful resources for webmasters <br />Google Webmaster Help Group - Have questions or feedback on our guide? Let us know <br />Google Webmaster Central Blog - Frequent posts by Googlers on how to improve your website <br />Google Webmaster Help Center - Filled with in-depth documentation on webmaster-related issues <br />Google Webmaster Tools - Optimize how Google interacts with your website <br />Google Webmaster Guidelines - Design, content, technical, and quality guidelines from Google <br />Google Analytics - Find the source of your visitors, what they're viewing, and benchmark changes <br />Google Website Optimizer - Run experiments on your pages to see what will work and what won't <br />Tips on Hiring an SEO - If you don't want to go at it alone, these tips should help you choose an <br />SEO company <br />Except as otherwise noted, the content of this document is licensed under the Creative Commons <br />Attribution 3.0 License. <br />Google's Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, Version 1.1, published 13 November 2008</p> <div style='clear: both;'></div> <p align='right' class='center small'> <em> Posted bySumedh at <a class='timestamp-link' href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/2008/12/googles-search-engine-optimization.html' title='permanent link'>8:27 PM</a> </em> <span class='post-comment-link'> <a class='comment-link' href='https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=8358084667742358094' onclick=''>0 comments</a> </span> <span class='post-backlinks post-comment-link'> </span> <span class='post-icons'> <span class='item-control blog-admin pid-802648142'> <a href='https://www.blogger.com/post-edit.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=8358084667742358094&from=pencil' title='Edit Post'> <span class='quick-edit-icon'> </span> </a> </span> </span> </p> <p align='right' class='center small'> <span class='post-labels'> </span> </p> <a name='6386548905940369806'></a> <h2> <a href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/2008/12/www-2.html'>WWW 2</a> <br/> <span class='entrydate'><span class='style2'>Sunday, December 14, 2008</span></span> </h2> <div class='post-header-line-1'></div> <p><p> In the last lesson I told you that "URLs" is pronounced "earls." In fact, a lot of people still use the initials and call them "U-R-Ls." I personally prefer calling them "earls" because "earls" rhymes with "squirrels," but the choice of what you call them is completely up to you :) </p><p> Let's take a look at how a sample WWW browser works. There are three basic types of WWW browsers available: line-mode browsers, full screen browsers (like Lynx), and graphical browsers (like Mosaic). </p><p> Line-mode browsers are about as user un-friendly as you can get. This is hard to describe, but line-mode browsers work a little like FTP inasmuch as you type a command, get some information on your screen, type a new command, get some more information, and so on ... </p><p> A full screen browser puts a menu on your screen that looks a little like the Gopher menus that we saw in <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP18.html">MAP18: Gopher (Part One)</a>. You move the cursor up and down the screen, select a highlighted link, press enter or return, and you are automatically taken to a new document or file (your fill screen browser may work differently than this, though). </p><p> Graphical browsers allow you to access not only text, but also pictures and sound (a.k.a. "hypermedia"). In fact, these pictures can be put in Web documents (a.k.a. Web pages), making that Web page look less like a Gopher menu and more like a page from a color magazine! Most graphical browsers use a mouse, and you point-and-click on a highlighted link to access it. </p><p> The URL for the sample Web page that we are going to use in this lesson is </p><ul><tt>http://ua1vm.ua.edu/~vmhttpd/index.html</tt></ul> and I am going to be using the UF WWW Browser for CMS to access this page. I'll talk a little more about how you can access a WWW browser in a few minutes, but I first want to show you what a basic Web page looks like. <p> The UF WWW Browser for CMS is the browser that my service provider uses, and it is a full screen browser. The browser that you use -- if you can even access a WWW browser -- will probably look and work a little differently than what you will see in this example. </p><p> Finally, in real life my browser highlights the links by making them a different color than the rest of the text. There is no way for me to use different colors in this letter, so I have highlighted the links in this example by surrounding them with a (<tt>* *</tt>). </p><p> Just like I can access an item in a Gopher menu by pointing at it and selecting it, I can access a WWW link by pointing at it and selecting it. </p><p> Enough talk. Time for the example. </p><p> I access my provider's WWW browser, and the following appears on my screen: </p><pre> Albert 1.2.0 (UF WWW Browser for CMS) Screen 1 of 2 (more screens) <br /> Viewing=http://ua1vm.ua.edu/~vmhttpd/index.html <br /> Title=UA1VM WWW Home Page <br /> Welcome to The University of Alabama's CMS WWW Server <br /> <br /> This CMS server is still under development. Any (*comments*) <br /> or (*suggestions*) will be greatly appreciated. Thank you. <br /> <br /> Gopher Sites: <br /> - (*UA1VM CMS Gopher Server*) <br /> - (*UA1IX AIX/370 Gopher Server*) <br /> - (*RISC/6000 Gopher Server*) <br /> - (*RICEVM1 CMS Gopher Server*) <br /> Telnet Sessions: <br /> - (*UA1VM.UA.EDU*) <br /> - (*UA1IX.UA.EDU - Line Mode*) <br /> - (*RISC.UA.EDU - Line Mode*) <br /> WWW Sites: <br /> - The University of Alabama Libraries (*WWW*) <br /> - The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (*WWW*) <br /> - The Alabama Supercomputer Network (*WWW*) <br /> - NASA Information Services via (*WWW*) <br /> Leisure: <br /> - (*Intertext Magazine*) - Electronic Fictional Magazine at The <br /> University of Michigan <br /> - (*Wiretap*) - a gopher to Cupertino, California <br /> - (*NNR*) - UA1VM's Network News Reader <br /> Other Neat Stuff: <br /> - The University of Alabama Library's On-Line (*Card Catalog*) <br /> - a (*map*) of The University of Alabama campus <br /> ... snip snip snip ... <br /></pre> COOL! <p> I can select any of these links -- the words set apart from the rest of the text with a (<tt>* *</tt>) -- and be transported to that particular link. </p><p> >From this one Web page, I can access Gopher, telnet, and even other Web pages! (I can also access FTP, although this page does not show it). </p><p> We've seen a lot of Gopher and telnet recently. Let's take a look at another Web page. Since I used to be a Simulations Director at the United States Space Camp (did I forget to tell you that?), I'm going to move my cursor down to the (<tt>*WWW*</tt>) link next to "<tt>NASA Information Services</tt>", press enter, and see what happens: </p><pre> Albert 1.2.0 (UF WWW Browser for CMS) Screen 1 of 2 (more screens) <br /> Viewing=http://hypatia.gsfc.nasa.gov/NASA_homepage.html <br /> Title=NASA Information Services via World Wide Web <br /> National Aeronautics and Space Administration <br /> <br /> NASA Logo <br /> <br /> (*World Wide Web (WWW) information services*) <br /> <br /> (*Hot Topics*) NASA news and subjects of public interest <br /> (*NASA Strategic Plan*) <br /> (*NASA Strategies, Policies, and Public Affairs*) <br /> (*NASA Online Educational Resources*) <br /> (*NASA Information Sources by Subject*) <br /> ... snip snip snip ... <br /></pre> This is certainly more interesting than SURAnet! ;) <p> >From this Web page I can access OTHER Web pages, and from those Web pages I can access even MORE Web pages, and so on ... </p><p> Yesterday I told you that it is possible for you to connect directly to a specific Internet resource so long as you know the resource's URL. <b>How</b> you do that depends on the browser that you use. </p><p> For the line-mode browser at CERN, for example, the command to connect to a particular URL is </p><ul><tt>GO <url&gtl</tt></ul> replacing <url> with the URL of the Internet resource that you want to access. In Lynx, you just select the "<tt>GO</tt>" link on the browser's start-up page; in most graphical browsers (like Mosaic), there is usually an "Open URL" option in one of the menus. <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP24.html#Sources">(1)</a> <p> Before you can do this, however, you have to first access the Web. There are three ways that you can do this: </p><ol><li>Through a browser stored on your local Internet service provider's machine. Ask your provider if your site has a Web browser, and how you can access it. <br /> <br /></li><li>Through a browser stored on your own machine. Until recently, you had to have a SLIP or PPP connection to do this. Some providers -- providers who FLOODED my mailbox when I did not talk about the special Level 2.0002746278546723 access that they offer -- now allow you to store a Web browser on your own machine even though you only have Level 2 access. <p> If you do not have a SLIP or PPP connection, contact your provider BEFORE you store a Web reader on your own computer and double-check that your provider will support the browser. <b>Most</b> service providers can <b>not</b> support a Web browser unless you have a SLIP or PPP connection. <br /> <br /></p></li><li>Through a telnet connection to a publicly-accessible Web browser. </li></ol> If you have a SLIP or a PPP connection, the WWW FAQ that I have stored on the University of Alabama's LISTSERV file server (WWW FAQ1) has a list of FTP sites where you can get specific Web browsers. <p> (Do me a favor ... re-read that last sentence. Did you EVER think you would understand a sentence like that? Isn't this workshop COOL?!!) </p><p> If you do not have access to a Web browser through your site, you may still be able to access a Web browser through telnet. The following are a few of the public Web sites: <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP24.html#Sources">(1)</a> </p><pre> telnet address comments <br /> -------------- ----------------------- <br /> info.cern.ch No password is required. This is in <br /> Switzerland, so U.S. users might be <br /> better off using a closer browser. <br /> <br /> www.cc.ukans.edu The "Lynx" full screen browser, which <br /> requires a vt100 terminal. Login as www. <br /> Does not allow users to "go" to arbitrary <br /> URLs. <br /> <br /> www.njit.edu Login as www. A full-screen browser at <br /> the New Jersey Institute of Technology. <br /> <br /> sun.uakom.cs Slovakia. Has a slow link, so only use <br /> from nearby. <br /> <br /> info.funet.fi Login as www. Offers several browsers, <br /> including Lynx (goto option disabled <br /> there too). <br /> <br /> fserv.kfki.hu Hungary. Has a slow link, so use from <br /> nearby. Login as www. <br /></pre> Once you are on the Web, it is possible for you to do keyword searches (much like the Veronica searches we did in <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP21.html">MAP21: Veronica</a>) using one of the Web's many search engines. One of the best Web search engines is the WebCrawler. The WebCrawler's URL is <ul><tt>http://www.biotech.washington.edu/WebQuery.html</tt></ul> and the WebCrawler searches for documents whose title <b>AND CONTENT</b> match your keyword. <p> Another Web search engine you probably will want to check out is the World Wide Web Worm. The Worm's URL is </p><ul><tt>http://www.cs.colorado.edu/home/mcbryan/WWWW.html</tt></ul> The Worm is not at thorough as the WebCrawler, but it is still a pretty competent search engine. <p> Both of these search engines provide really good on-line help and instructions. </p><p> One last thing, and I am though for this lesson. Please remember: </p><ul><li>The "Web" is the collection of all of the files and information that can be accessed by a Web browser. <br /> <br /></li><li>Mosaic and Lynx and just BROWSERS that allow you to access the Web. </li></ul></p> <div style='clear: both;'></div> <p align='right' class='center small'> <em> Posted bySumedh at <a class='timestamp-link' href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/2008/12/www-2.html' title='permanent link'>11:51 PM</a> </em> <span class='post-comment-link'> <a class='comment-link' href='https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=6386548905940369806' onclick=''>1 comments</a> </span> <span class='post-backlinks post-comment-link'> </span> <span class='post-icons'> <span class='item-control blog-admin pid-802648142'> <a href='https://www.blogger.com/post-edit.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=6386548905940369806&from=pencil' title='Edit Post'> <span class='quick-edit-icon'> </span> </a> </span> </span> </p> <p align='right' class='center small'> <span class='post-labels'> Labels: <a href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/search/label/Internet' rel='tag'>Internet</a> </span> </p> <a name='6571538068130475264'></a> <h2> <a href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/2008/12/www.html'>WWW</a> <br/> <span class='entrydate'><span class='style2'><!--Can't find substitution for tag [post.dateHeader]--></span></span> </h2> <div class='post-header-line-1'></div> <p>I wish I had six weeks just to talk about the World Wide Web (a.k.a. WWW or "the Web."). If you think Gopher is neat, wait until you start playing around on the Web :) <p> <a name="SixWeeks">Unfortunately,</a> I <b>don't</b> have six weeks to talk about the Web -- I only have two lessons. Because of this, we are going to go through the Web like Sherman went through Georgia <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP23.html#Notes">(1)</a>. </p><p> <a name="BadNews">That's the bad news</a>. The good news is that there are a lot of REALLY good Web guides available, and I am even seriously considering developing my own Web workshop that I will offer <b>late</b> next year <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP23.html#Notes">(2)</a>. </p><p> Until that time comes, however, let's talk about the BASICS of the Web. </p><p> In the last few lessons I showed you how most Gopher menus are linked together. We started out in the <tt>gopher.squirrel.com</tt> root menu, and eventually ended up at the SURAnet gopher menu. We were able to do this because the menus that we traveled through had links to menus and files that were located at other Gopher sites. </p><p> Because Gopher menus are linked together, a whole world of information is available to us with just a few keystrokes! </p><p> Imagine if we were able to take these links one step further. Instead of linking menus, we could link <b>documents</b> together. You could read one document, find a keyword in that document that really interests you, touch that keyword, and automatically be taken to a NEW document somewhere else in the world -- and this new document could even have links to OTHER documents around the world, and so on. </p><p> Sound too good to be true? It isn't, thanks to something called "hypertext." If you have ever played with Apple's HyperCard program or the "help" menus in the latest Microsoft packages, you have already experienced hypertext. You "select" a highlighted word -- usually by clicking on it with a mouse -- and you are taken into an entirely new document or help screen. </p><p> The World Wide Web is based on hypertext. It is possible for you to go roaming around the Web, bouncing from document to document, using nothing but the links in those documents! </p><p> Just as you can access Gopherspace through a Gopher server or client, you can access the Web through something called a "browser." A browser can read documents, fetch documents, access files by FTP, read Usenet newsgroups, telnet into remote sites, and even travel around Gopherspace. In short, everything that we have talked about from <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP08.html">MAP08: Usenet</a> to <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP22.html">MAP22:Gophermail</a> can be done using nothing but a Web browser! </p><p> The Web is able to accomplish all of this thanks to something called URLs ("earls") -- Universal Resource Locators. URLs list the exact location of <b>any</b> Internet resource. </p><p> If you think about it, giving every Internet resource a unique address is the hard part. Once you have given something an address, linking to it is pretty easy :) </p><p> What is really special about the Web is that the Web does all of this "behind the scenes." It is possible for you to bounce from one link to another without ever knowing the exact address of where you are, or even how you got there. </p><p> If you ever want to jump <b>directly</b> to a particular Internet resource, however, you are going to need to know a little bit more about URLs. Here are a few basic URLs: </p><pre> file://wuarchive.wustl.edu/mirrors/msdos/graphics/gifkit.zip<br /> ftp://wuarchive.wustl.edu/mirrors<br /> http://info.cern.ch:80/default.html<br /> news:alt.hypertext<br /> telnet://dra.com<br /></pre> Gee ... those look a little like FTP addresses, don't they? <p> The first part of an URL -- the stuff before the colon -- tells the browser how to access that particular file. For example, to access </p><ul><tt>ftp://wuarchive.wustl.edu/mirrors</tt></ul> your browser would use FTP. <p> Most of the access methods are pretty straight-forward. Here is a list of some of the more common access methods that you are going to see listed in the first part of URLs: </p><pre> method what it stands for<br /> ------ ---------------------------------------<br /><br /> ftp File Transfer Protocol<br /> file File Transfer Protocol (same as ftp)<br /> news Internet News Protocol (Usenet)<br /> gopher Gopher<br /> telnet Telnet<br /> http Hypertext Transport Protocol<br /></pre> We've used all of these before, except for "<tt>http</tt>". If you ever see a URL with "<tt>http</tt>" at the beginning of it, that means that the file is a hypertext document (with hypertext links to other documents). <p> The rest of a URL -- the stuff after the colon -- is the address of that particular file. In general, two slashes (<tt>//</tt>) after the colon indicates a machine name or address. </p><p> For example, </p><ul><tt>file://wuarchive.wustl.edu/mirrors/msdos/graphics/gifkit.zip</tt></ul> is the URL for an FTP file at <tt>wuarchive.wustl.edu</tt>, and <ul><tt>http://info.cern.ch:80/default.html</tt></ul> is the URL for a hypertext document at <tt>info.cern.ch, port 80</tt>.</p> <div style='clear: both;'></div> <p align='right' class='center small'> <em> Posted bySumedh at <a class='timestamp-link' href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/2008/12/www.html' title='permanent link'>11:50 PM</a> </em> <span class='post-comment-link'> <a class='comment-link' href='https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=6571538068130475264' onclick=''>0 comments</a> </span> <span class='post-backlinks post-comment-link'> </span> <span class='post-icons'> <span class='item-control blog-admin pid-802648142'> <a href='https://www.blogger.com/post-edit.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=6571538068130475264&from=pencil' title='Edit Post'> <span class='quick-edit-icon'> </span> </a> </span> </span> </p> <p align='right' class='center small'> <span class='post-labels'> Labels: <a href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/search/label/Internet' rel='tag'>Internet</a> </span> </p> <a name='7904756581369143806'></a> <h2> <a href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/2008/12/q.html'>Q & A</a> <br/> <span class='entrydate'><span class='style2'><!--Can't find substitution for tag [post.dateHeader]--></span></span> </h2> <div class='post-header-line-1'></div> <p><ol><li>I'm subscribed to the '<tt>squirrel</tt>' LISTSERV mailing list (<tt>SQUIRREL@UA1VM.UA.EDU</tt>). I just heard a story about how an energetic squirrel once crashed the mainframe at Mississippi State University during registration (a true story) and I want to share this information with everyone on the '<tt>squirrel</tt>' mailing list. What address should I send my e-mail letter to if I want the letter to be distributed to everyone on the "<tt>squirrel</tt>" list?<br /><br /><ol start="2" type="a"><li><tt>SQUIRREL@UA1VM.UA.EDU</tt> <p> Letters should be sent to the <b>list</b> address. </p></li></ol><br /></li><li>I'm looking for a list of all known LISTSERV lists. What LISTSERV command should I use to get such a list?<br /><br /><ol start="3" type="a"><li><tt>LISTS GLOBAL</tt> <p>BTW, you can send the lists global command to <b>any</b> LISTSERV address ... it is a universal LISTSERV command. </p></li></ol><br /></li><li>Okay, I just got the "list of lists." I found a neat list called "<tt>navigate</tt>" but the list of lists only shows the address as <tt>NAVIGATE@UBVM</tt>. What address should I send my subscribe command to?<br /><br /><ol start="3" type="a"><li><tt>LISTSERV@UBVM.BITNET</tt> <p>This was a tough question. You had to remember to convert the <tt>LIST@NODE</tt> address to <tt>LIST@NODE.BITNET</tt>. You also had to remember that LISTSERV commands have to be sent to the LISTSERV address. :) </p></li></ol><br /></li><li>I want to subscribe to the alt.abuse.recovery newsgroup. I sent a e-mail letter to <tt>LISTSERV@UA1VM.UA.EDU</tt> with the command <tt>SUBSCRIBE ALT.ABUSE.RECOVERY JOE STUDENT</tt>, and I got back an error message saying that "<tt>alt.abuse.recovery</tt>" is unknown to the LISTSERV. What's going on?<br /><br /><ol start="2" type="a"><li><tt>alt.abuse.recovery</tt> is a Usenet newsgroup; to subscribe to the group from a Usenet reader. <p>Remember, if the group's name has periods in it, it probably is a Usenet newsgroup. </p></li></ol><br /> </li><li>How can I unsubscribe from the Roadmap workshop?<br /><br /><ol start="3" type="a"><li>send an e-mail letter to <tt>LISTSERV@UA1VM.UA.EDU</tt> which says <tt>UNSUB *</tt> in the body of your letter. </li></ol> </li></ol> <h3>PART TWO: TRUE OR FALSE</h3> <ol start="6"><li>FALSE<br /> There is nothing wrong with giving my best friend my password. <p> (Never give your password to ANYONE!)<br /><br /> </p></li><li>FALSE<br /> WRITING IN ALL CAPS IS CONSIDERED TO BE GOOD NETIQUETTE. <p> (Writing in all caps is ANNOYING.)<br /><br /> </p></li><li>FALSE<br /> The word "<tt>squirrel</tt>" would be an excellent password. <p> (Squirrel is in the dictionary. NEVER use a password that is in the dictionary.)<br /><br /> </p></li><li>FALSE<br /> Letters to a LISTSERV list should be sent to the LISTSERV address. <p> (Letters should be sent to the <b>list</b> address.)<br /><br /> </p></li><li>FALSE<br /> LISTSERV commands should be sent to the list address. <p> (Commands should be sent to the <b>LISTSERV</b> address.) </p></li></ol> <h3>PART THREE: SHORT ANSWER</h3> <ol start="11"><li>One of my friends just e-mailed me a chain letter offering me good luck so long as I send the chain letter to ten additional people. Heck, there are several <b>hundred</b> people subscribed to each of the Usenet newsgroups and LISTSERV lists. Why can't I just forward the chain letter to these groups? <p> Chain letters violate the relevant posting rule (and are likely to turn you into flame-bait). </p><p> Also -- and this was not covered in the lessons -- most networks have Acceptable Usage policies that strictly prohibit chain letters. </p><p> If someone sends you a chain letter, forward the chain letter (along with an angry reply) to that person's postmaster.<br /><br /> </p></li><li>Patrick's dad said "DON'T include the entire contents of a previous posting in your reply(s)." Why <b>can't</b> I do this? <p> It is rude. When you re-post the entire contents of a previous posting, you are forcing the readers to reread something that they have already read. </p><p> The purpose of reposting is to remind everyone what was said, not to repeat what was said :)<br /><br /> </p></li><li>If someone spams a list that I am on, what should I do? Why shouldn't I just send my angry replies to the list? <p> Your best bet is to ignore it. If you are really angry, reply to the poster at his e-mail address, or complain to the poster's site administrator. </p><p> You should not send your replies to the list because the spammer is probably not even a member or the list, and, if he is, he probably does not care about what you think. </p></li></ol> <h3>BONUS QUESTIONS</h3> <ol start="14"><li>How many National Football Championships has the University of Alabama's Crimson Tide football team won? <ol start="4" type="a"><li>12 </li></ol><br /><br /></li><li>Patrick Douglas Crispen is: <ol start="4" type="a"><li>a squirrel </li></ol> </li></ol></p> <div style='clear: both;'></div> <p align='right' class='center small'> <em> Posted bySumedh at <a class='timestamp-link' href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/2008/12/q.html' title='permanent link'>11:50 PM</a> </em> <span class='post-comment-link'> <a class='comment-link' href='https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=7904756581369143806' onclick=''>0 comments</a> </span> <span class='post-backlinks post-comment-link'> </span> <span class='post-icons'> <span class='item-control blog-admin pid-802648142'> <a href='https://www.blogger.com/post-edit.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=7904756581369143806&from=pencil' title='Edit Post'> <span class='quick-edit-icon'> </span> </a> </span> </span> </p> <p align='right' class='center small'> <span class='post-labels'> Labels: <a href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/search/label/Internet' rel='tag'>Internet</a> </span> </p> <a name='5464575764763097090'></a> <h2> <a href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/2008/12/ftp.html'>FTP</a> <br/> <span class='entrydate'><span class='style2'><!--Can't find substitution for tag [post.dateHeader]--></span></span> </h2> <div class='post-header-line-1'></div> <p>I hope that you are having as much fun participating in this workshop as I am having teaching it! :) <p> In the last lesson we used a tool called "Telnet" which allowed us to access remote computers and run programs on those remote computers. </p><p> In the next few lessons we are going to use a tool called "File Transfer Protocol" (or "FTP") which will allow us to access remote computers and retrieve files from these computers. Actually, it is probably more accurate to say that we will be using "anonymous" FTP, but I'll explain that in a minute. </p><p> What sort of files are available through FTP? Well, "hundreds of systems connected to the Internet have file libraries, or archives, accessible to the public. Much of this consists of free or low-cost {computer} programs for virtually every make of computer. If you want a different communications program for your IBM, or feel like playing a new game on your Amiga, you'll {probably} be able to get it {using FTP}." </p><p> <a name="1"> "But </a>there are also libraries of documents as well. If you want a copy of a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision, you can {get a copy using FTP}. Copies of historical documents, from the Magna Carta to the Declaration of Independence are also yours for the asking ... You can also find song lyrics, poems, {and} even summaries of every {Animaniacs} episode ever made. You can also find extensive files detailing everything you could possibly want to know about the Net itself". <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP13.html#Sources">(1)</a> </p><p> Before we get too in-depth into FTP, I think that now is as good a time as any to quickly review the client/server relationship that I briefly mentioned in lesson three (<a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP03.html">MAP03: Levels of Internet Connectivity</a>). </p><p> "Client" is just another word for a program running on your service provider's system that enables you to talk to, and get stuff from, distant computers. The client on your service provider's system takes your commands and turns them into requests for information from programs -- "servers" -- running on other, distant computers. </p><p> The client/server relationship allows you to TELNET into remote computers and run programs on those remote computers, and it also allows you to use FTP to get files from remote sites. </p><p> The client/server relationship is also what makes my job as an Internet trainer quite difficult. While all of the FTP clients out there do the exact same thing, they all use different commands to do it. </p><p> Fortunately, if you can understand the basics of what happens during an FTP session, the commands -- no matter what client you are using -- are pretty easy. </p><p> The basic steps in an FTP session are: </p><ol><li>Start-up your FTP client. </li><li>Give your FTP client an address to connect to (and, just like TELNET, step one and two can be combined into one easy step). </li><li>Identify yourself to the remote site. </li><li>Give the remote site your password. </li><li>Look around the directory for files. </li><li>Change Directories. </li><li>Set the transfer mode (optional). </li><li>Get the file(s) you want. </li><li>Quit. </li></ol> The best way to understand what is going on is to look at a sample FTP session. The University of Alabama's connection to the Internet is through SURAnet (a large regional network), so I'm going to FTP to them. <p> Before I do that, though, there are three things that I need to emphasize: </p><ol><li>FTP requires a heck of a lot of resources, both on your system and on the remote system that you are accessing. Because of this, FTP sessions should only be run during non-working hours (usually 6 PM to 6 AM local). <p> I realize that this constraint is going to be a difficult for those of you who are reading this at work, and who only have Internet (and FTP access) through your employer. However, as responsible Internet citizens we have to remember that the FTP sites are providing us FTP access out of the kindness of their hearts. If we take advantage of this kindness, and access various FTP sites during working hours, those FTP sites may decide to close their doors to the public ... and then EVERYONE loses.<br /><br /></p></li><li>In light of what was said in #1, please do not flood SURAnet. In <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP15.html">MAP15: FTPMAIL</a> I will post a list of FTP sites that you can visit (much like the TELNET list I posted in <a href="http://www.ewp.rpi.edu/hartford/tis//Roadmap/MAP12.html">MAP12: Telnet (Part Two)</a>). Until I post that list, just sit back and enjoy the show :)<br /><br /></li><li>Since this lesson is already over 100 lines long, I hope that you won't mind if I break this FTP lesson into two lessons. The first lesson is in this document, and I'll finish it in the next document. This will mean that we will end this lesson in the middle of our sample FTP session, but it will also mean that this lesson won't be the size of a small book :) </li></ol> Starting an FTP session is pretty easy. For most of you, all you have to do to start-up your FTP client is type <ul><tt>ftp</tt></ul> on you system's command line (or, if you are in a Windows or Mac environment, double-click on the FTP icon). <p> >From there, you would give the client an FTP address to connect to. </p><p> Like TELNET, however, there is a way to combine these two steps into one, easy step. For most of you, to access your FTP client and give your client an address to hook up to, all you would have to do it type the command </p><ul><tt>ftp <site></tt></ul> and replace <site> with the address of the FTP site that you want your client software to access. <p> In our example, the SURAnet FTP address is <tt>ftp.sura.net</tt>, so I would type </p><ul><tt>ftp ftp.sura.net</tt></ul> to start an FTP session. (Note that the second "<tt>ftp</tt>" is part of SURAnet's FTP address. If I wanted to ftp to <tt>info.umd.edu</tt>, I would type "<tt>ftp info.umd.edu</tt>"; if I wanted to ftp to <tt>lcs.mit.edu</tt>, I would type "<tt>ftp lcs.mit.edu</tt>"). <p> Once I hit the enter key, the following appears on my screen: </p><pre> ftp ftp.sura.net<br /> Connecting to ftp.sura.net 128.167.254.179, port 21<br /> 220 nic.sura.net FTP server (Version wu-2.4(1) Fri May 20 10:20:58<br /> EDT 1994) ready.<br /> USER (identify yourself to the host):<br /></pre> The second line tells me that my system is connecting to ftp.sura.net (and even gives me the IP number for <tt>ftp.sura.net</tt>), the third line is some automatic information from SURAnet, and the bottom line is asking me to log in. <p> If I had an account on the SURAnet system, I would enter my SURAnet user ID. But, since I don't have an account on this system, I have to find another way to access the system. ;) </p><p> This is where the "anonymous" FTP I mentioned earlier comes in :) The other way to access some FTP sites -- at least those FTP sites that allow outside access -- is to use the userid "anonymous". By using the name "anonymous", you are telling that FTP site that you aren't a regular user of that site, but you would still like to access that FTP site, look around, and retrieve files. </p><p> So, where it says USER, I type the word </p><ul><tt>anonymous</tt></ul> hit enter, and cross my fingers. If SURAnet does not allow anonymous access, I'm about to find out :) <pre> >>>USER anonymous<br /> 331 Guest login ok, send your complete e-mail address as password.<br /> Password:<br /></pre> COOL! Its going to let me in. All I have to do is give the site a password. <p> Out of politeness to the FTP site, if you login as "anonymous", you need to use your full Internet address as your password. This helps the FTP site keep track of who has visited its site. </p><p> So, since it wants my password, and since the password for any anonymous FTP session is my full Internet address, I type </p><ul><tt>pcrispe1@ua1vm.ua.edu</tt></ul> (Stop laughing -- p-crispy-one is <b>not</b> funny!!). Once I hit enter, my screen fills with the following: <pre> >>>PASS ********<br /> 230- SURAnet ftp server running wuarchive experimental ftpd<br /> 230-<br /> 230-Welcome to the SURAnet ftp server. If you have any problems with<br /> 230-the server please mail the to systems@sura.net. If you do have problems,<br /> 230-please try using a dash (-) as the first character of your password<br /> 230- -- this will turn off the continuation messages that may be confusing<br /> 230-your ftp client.<br /> ...<br /> 230 Guest login ok, access restrictions apply.<br /> Command:<br /></pre> Notice the line "Guest login ok, access restrictions apply." This means that the site has given me access, but I only have access to the files that are available to the general public. <p> Okay ... now what? I've started-up my FTP client, I've given the client an FTP address to connect to, I've identified myself to the remote site (I told it that I am anonymous), and I've given the site my password. </p><p> Now it's time to see what sort of files and directories are around, and to get those files ... which we will do in the next lesson :) </p></p> <div style='clear: both;'></div> <p align='right' class='center small'> <em> Posted bySumedh at <a class='timestamp-link' href='http://netgoers.blogspot.com/2008/12/ftp.html' title='permanent link'>11:49 PM</a> </em> <span class='post-comment-link'> <a class='comment-link' href='https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=5464575764763097090' onclick=''>0 comments</a> </span> <span class='post-backlinks post-comment-link'> </span> <span class='post-icons'> <span class='item-control blog-admin pid-802648142'> <a href='https://www.blogger.com/post-edit.g?blogID=6488319826472331494&postID=5464575764763097090&from=pencil' 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