Today we are going to talk about the importance of making sure your newsletter is tied closely with your Website, both in terms of structure as well as linking. Website structure is how you present your site for both visitors and spiders in terms of their page/file locations. Internal linking is how you link all your pages with each other.
Both website structure and internal linking along with sitemap if done right give better chances of indexing all the pages of your newsletter website into their database – enabling each page to be found when someone searches for it.
There are different approaches to website structures, but a good idea is to have at least two separate routes. One for the user, and one for search engines. For this reason, it is important to have easy to find and easy to use links in your site navigation. Good ideas for effective web site navigation are:
– Tying your newsletter topic related links inside the basic page text;
– Placing text links to the most important pages in the footer;
– Using sections also known as ”tabs” if they make sense for your site design;
– Having Text links instead of scripts or images wherever possible.
People like the sense of control and seeing where they have been.
Tree-like structure is the most effective model of structuring your website. As a general rule, make sure that every page of your site is accessible with 1 or 2 clicks but never deeper than 4 clicks.
It is a good idea to have a link to your homepage and to the sitemap from all other pages of your website.
Your website should be easy to navigate; it should be intuitive to your visitors. A well-structured site is more effective and gives a better conversion rate. If a person has to look hard to find where they need to go, then they quickly lose focus and might just leave it forever.
Internal linking should be logical and well-organized. This lets your visitors quickly navigate from section to section as well as help the search engine spiders to more easily locate/index your pages. Here’s just one little but strong technique you can do to improve your ranking by a smarter site structure:
I suggest you have all your main files/pages in the root directory. For example, our email marketing solution page is located here: mobilestorm.com/email-marketing-solution – right in the root directory. Though in our internal structure it’s a sub-section that is one level below after our product’s Stun! page. Why are we doing this? It gives a better ”weight” to our page and therefore helps increase of our page rankings.
You can link to your pages right from the content too – see example above on how I did it in this very article.
Also, always link to your most important pages from your index/main page. Thus, you tell robots that those pages are valuable and contain important information for your visitors and internally share your main page’s pagerank value across your site.
Another trick is to use text links at the bottom of each page. Footer text links allow you to use optimized text throughout your site to help search engines define the content of the different pages.
Needless to say each internal link on your site should contain keywords of that particular page where they are leading to. Doing so reinforces the relevance of the target page for those search engines that take link text into consideration. That’s an easy way to boost search engine placement.
Each of your links should be valid and working properly. There are thousands of tools that can do link validation for you, or if your newsletter website is small you can do it manually: just click on each link and see if it leads to the right page. Also, when you submit your sitemap file to Google (we will talk about it below), you’ll be able to do the link validation through them.
A sitemap does 2 things: it provides a convenient location for links to all of your pages, and it gives search engines with an easy to navigate list of your content pages.
Usually, a visitor finds your sitemap only after your navigation has failed. You want it to load quickly and be highly functional. Your sitemap should not just be a list of hyperlinks either. Simply structure it by sections and you can add a small amount of text describing each link.
Here is what you need to do:
– Create 2 sitemaps: sitemap.xml & sitemap.html;
– Make sure all your pages are properly listed;
– Upload sitemaps to your root directory;
– Put the sitemap.html link somewhere in the footer or header of your mainpage so your visitors would easily find it;
– Submit the sitemap.xml to Google Sitemaps.
A sitemap not only helps your visitors find what they want, but it helps the search engine spider bots find ALL of your pages.
Until next time…
Director, Online Marketing
Every problem comes with a solution