Through several years of researching how to achieve first page placement I have discovered that for every article that explains how to do it one way, there are three others that can contradict the findings of the first article. Which means 1) Nobody really has a clue or 2) People just like to write catchy titles to catch other’s attention.
I gave up the quest of research the beginning of the year and decided to just try things on my own. Those tips and tricks I have read about that make sense, why not just weed out the garbage and fall back to the old adage of “keeping it simple stupid”.
With that being said, one of the 3 major things that I have found (and counter found) that is important in having your web pages indexed correctly, is that they meet W3C validation rules. Makes sense. You site should be clean of errors and easily read by the search engine bots.
So I embarked on a great campaign - that if nothing else, each website I design is W3C valid. This should just be something that my clients should be able to count on when they commission me to be their webmaster.
Well this week, I am working on a project where I am going through each page of a website and cleaning up the code. If you have done this, you know that it can be tricky going back and forth fixing one thing and breaking something else. Took me a little bit of time, but once I got on a roll it was pretty simple.
In a mater of an hour or so, the entire website was 100% W3C validated and compliant. I gave myself a pat on the back, and got another cup of coffee.
When I came back to my desk, I noticed that one of the other simple things on my task list was to add Google Analytic tracking to the website. Forgot to do this a while back, so hey, another checkmark off the list.
Hopped over to my Google Analytics, grabbed the code and put it in the website template. Gave a quick upload and done. Check. Done this so many times in the past, I didn’t even take an extra second to look at the code.
I had to add a new page to the site, so once I got everything on-line I decided to run another quick validation on the site just to make sure we were still in compliance… at least with the new page.
EACH PAGE GOT A VALIDATION ERROR!!!!!
When I look at the error, it was the code that I had copied from Google. Are you kidding me? Google cannot even post code that is compliant…. arrrg! Well, that’s ok Google, at least I fixed it on my site.
Sorry, just needed to rant a bit.