Framed Web Sites

Does your genealogy web site use frames? If so, this may cause you a problem with the search engines indexing your site. Google says:

“Google supports frames to the extent that it can. Frames can cause problems for search engines because they don’t correspond to the conceptual model of the web. In this model, one page displays only one URL. Pages that use frames display several URLs (one for each frame) within a single page. If Google determines that a user’s query matches the page as a whole, it will return the entire frame set. However, if the user’s query matches an individual frame within the larger frame set, Google returns only the relevant frame. In this case, the entire frame set of the page will not appear.” Read more . . . .

How Search Engines Read Web Sites Created Using Frames by S. R. Emerson

A special thank you to Jean McCarthy for allowing me to use her site in this tutorial and for Cricket Walker for her SEO Training Class and E-book with a lesson on framed web sites that inspired me to write this tutorial.

Most often, the genealogy web sites I have seen that are using frames, are using them for the side navigation. As you can also see by this example, the RootsWeb banner will appear on both parts of the page.

Site using Frames – click image for larger screenshot

A change in the layout of your page can give you a frame-like look, allow you use the same navigation on all pages and the search engines will more easily read your page.

Same Site Without Frames – Click image for larger screenshot

I knew that Jean was using FrontPage 2003 as her editor so created the site with Expression Web which is the successor to FrontPage. Any files I created she would still be able to use. I decided to use design time includes for the left side navigation and footer. You could just as easily us server side includes (SSI) if you are using a different editor or Note Pad.

Continue reading step-by-step instructions on moving from a framed web site . . . .

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