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  1. #1
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    Search Engine Optimization: Textarea and HTML comments

    Two questions about SEO:

    Do search engines index content provided in a form textarea?

    And content in HTML comments: <!-- -->
    `~@#\^%&*/\.<.\/-|+|_!:;..=?>
    PHP, SEO | anshul | mediasworks.org | FB

  • #2
    Regular Coder Coastal Web's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by anshul
    Two questions about SEO:

    Do search engines index content provided in a form textarea?

    And content in HTML comments: <!-- -->
    yes, and yes....

    Samantha Gram

  • #3
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    Exclamation

    Why Search Engines are going to index commented content!
    Are you sure?
    `~@#\^%&*/\.<.\/-|+|_!:;..=?>
    PHP, SEO | anshul | mediasworks.org | FB

  • #4
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    Smile

    I continue my important discussion here; Another SEO related question:

    What are the SEO-unfriendly href= attributes?
    That come to my mind (that people often put) is onclick,

    Please help me collect, what I'm missing. Thanks.
    `~@#\^%&*/\.<.\/-|+|_!:;..=?>
    PHP, SEO | anshul | mediasworks.org | FB

  • #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by anshul
    I continue my important discussion here; Another SEO related question:

    What are the SEO-unfriendly href= attributes?
    That come to my mind (that people often put) is onclick,

    Please help me collect, what I'm missing. Thanks.
    onclick is a valid xhtml/html event handler and is often used legitimately. For example, if you don't want to lose visitors from your site you can open a link in a new window. Whilst no-one "really" knows the search engine algorithms, I would suggest the most abused attribute is the alt attribute where some scheming would be webmasters enter 33 lines of text in an effort to "fool" the search engines. Who do they think they're kidding? Web SEO software can pick it up and even if there isn't sufficient contrast between the text colour and the page background colour even if this is all coded in an external style sheet.

  • #6
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    I researched SE's 4 years ago and often asked if they really indexed the comments...there was wide debate...some swore they actually did...others insisted they didn't. No real answer was ever given.

    Since they all have their methods, you could simply test yourself by making a page with some weird words commented out...then search for this string down the road to see if they were picked up.

    Something tells me they aren't...
    Zoobie or not Zoobie...That is the problem.
    <body onUnload="flush( ! )">

  • #7
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    You may well be right, but remember that a spider reads the html code including the comments. Granted, they may well be "programmed" out, however if they were relevant to the content you probably don't have much to lose unless there are demerit points for doing so. I mean, meta tags are really no more than comments and far too many "shifty" designers think they can use alt attributes the same way.

    Unless the SEs publish their guidelines or algorithms we'll never know though.

  • #8
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    I'd say that it's unlikely that SEs index or use commented markup. If they did index and use commented text within a page then commented text would be the single most popular black hat means of keyword spamming.
    Of course, it's difficult to say without checking the source or well-placed sites, but afaik, it isn't widely used, which suggests that commented text has no bearing on a site's relevance or ranking.
    If it were possible, I'm sure we'd all have heard of its use.

  • #9
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    Hello Bill, nice to see you here.

    I'm not talking about abuse, simply a short explanatory comment. I am actually working my way through the Web CEO course at the moment and they do mention the use of comments in optimising pages. Being a stickler for doing things the right way, I was actually surprised at the mention of them. However, it if was short such as:-

    <!--This page focuses on our web design services-->

    then it is hardly abuse and is really only commenting the purpose of the page. Interesting subject though. It has me wondering more about documenting code more thoroughly.

  • #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by bushie
    <!--This page focuses on our web design services-->
    Why wouldn't that be something you'd make clear in the visible content?

    I can appreciate how commenting markup can aid development as a means of leaving notes for yourself and other developers, but stating that it has seo benefits sounds a little like the patter of a snake oil salesperson.
    Given that Google have openly stated that they favour user-centric content, I can't see why they would value something which the average user never sees. It simply seems as though it would be too open to abuse and I'm sure that's something which Google appreciate.

    What would you put into comments that would be useful to users that you wouldn't necessarily put into the visible page content?

    I could be wrong about this, but I'd need to pretty solid evidence first. If WebCEO (or anyone else) can offer some evidence - or even some rationale argument in favour of why it would be a good idea (given the more open options) - then I'll happily reconsider my position.
    Last edited by Bill Posters; 11-20-2005 at 03:05 PM.

  • #11
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    Content weight...

    In my own evaluation of good/bad web page design, I wrote a bookmarklet to try to assess the content to fluff ratio...

    Code:
    javascript:alert('text/html = '+(b=document.body).innerText.length/b.innerHTML.length);void(0);
    I found that content rich pages (with a higher text/html ratio) not only load blindly fast, but that they also rank quite well on Google.

    It'll be interesting to see what happens to my resume, since its content is entirely inside of a textarea (for dynamic resequencing according to position specific criteria). It may be invisible to search engines...

    ...or it might not. Time will tell.

  • #12
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    Hello,

    Is it necessary that code to text ratio to be calculated for better ranking? How much or what % code to text ration required for best ranking?

    Mumbai SEO Services

  • #13
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    I am also suggesting that make one page and insert comments, make it crawl and type that Exact phrases in search box and fire query. if your word phrases show in the search list then it is sure that Google bot index comments.


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