When planning a new website, which of three types of websites should you choose? One of them can ruin your chances with the search engines! Find out what they are and make the right choice for your website…
Your new website will have two audiences, human visitors and search engine robots.
Ultimately, you build your website for the benefit of human visitors, but you want to please search engine robots as well since they will cause your human visitors to find you.
You want to choose the type of website that will appeal to both.
Types of Websites
There are three basic types of websites to look at…
A static website is a website consisting of multiple HTML web pages. Each web page is created and stored in its final form as the visitor will see it. Each page’s content remains the same until a new version of the page is stored on the web server, hence the name “static”.
The pages of a static website are written in HTML, the standard text-based language that web browsers understand. A HTML page usually ends with “.html”.
Search engine robots love static websites! They can easily access and index each web page, and as long as the website has a good navigation system, the robots can easily find all pages in the website. This is very good for you!
With a dynamic website, the page content that is delivered to the browser (that your visitor sees) is determined at the time that the visitor requests to see the page. This means that the page content can be different from one visitor to the next, hence the name “dynamic”.
Websites that allow the visitor to interact with it, e.g. an online time-sheet system or eBay or PayPal, are dynamic websites. Special programming technologies like PHP, ASP, ASP.NET, etc. are used to automatically generate the HTML code that is sent to the visitor’s browser.
Since dynamic websites also send HTML code to browsers, search engine robots have some ability to access and index dynamic websites. However, they are not near as good at indexing dynamic websites as they are at indexing static websites, and often shy away from dynamic websites.
Flash websites are special types of websites that don’t use HTML at all. They are created using special software, and the result is a single file that contains all the individual pages.
A well-created Flash website can be impressive! The visual effects you can achieve are really nice, and a Flash website can provide a smooth user experience.
The problem with a Flash website is that the search engine robots cannot access it. The single Flash file is like an impenetrable fortress to search engine robots. This means the robots can’t find your web pages and they won’t ever appear in search engine results. This is not good for you!
My recommendation about the types of websites? Unless you have a good reason to go with a dynamic website, stick with a static website. Don’t use Flash to create an entire website. If there are elements of your website that can only be done with Flash, place the Flash elements in a static website where needed.