Web Usability & Website Optimization

Web Usability and SEO
A blog on » Web Usability   » Website Accessibility   » Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

SEO & Web Usability - Unite them

Just finished reading a good article “Web Site Usability and SEO” by Shari Thurow where she has answered the question – Why do usability professionals still not comprehend SEM and SEO? ... Good read for SEO and web usability experts, I must say.

I always believed that, Search Engine Optimization i.e. SEO and Web Usability are, among others, the two very important pillars in building a successful website and if these two forces (usability and seo) work together, there would be no way a website will fail in the market.

It is indeed very important for a professional with any of these skills to work hand in hand with a person, who has got expertise in the other field, or the best thing for a Web Usability Professional would be to acquire SEO skill sets and for a SEO guru to train self the web usability best practices. As I wrote in one of my previous articles -“Choosing Domain names from Usability perspective” I have explained the importance of web usability from the very beginning of a project life cycle, a phase where you/your client propose a website plan. Web Usability people should work with Search Engine Marketing (SEM) guys right from this beginning phase.
" Read more on the same topic at this five page article on Web Usability and SEO by Jennifer Sullivan Cassidy.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Web Usability Problem in Google – Sub Domain Bug

I have passion for search engines, and like others I do spend lot of time in searching. I like searching on Google, Yahoo and MSN, they are my favorite search engines. And being a Search Engine Optimization professional, I do keep looking at the searches, study them, and collect the data for my projects/sites.
I have another blog, Sher, Shayari, Jokes and PJ’s just for fun where I post the email forward contents from friends and colleagues, which contains funny stuff like jokes, puzzles etc and being into IT company one gets lots of such emails everyday :)

Enough about myself, let me get to the point:
Well I was searching for “Shayari” (without quotes) in Google, to check relevant blogs and sites that have similar contents as my other blog on Sher and Shayari, and found some weird results on page 3(Results 21-30 of …), below is a screenshot of the same:

Search result for shayari on google

So what’s the catch?
If you look carefully at the results you will realize that 5 results are from the same domain but with different sub-domains and the search listing appears exactly same except for the part of “City” name. Now when you open each of these pages, you will find that all these pages hold the same content too except the “City” name.

Looking at the different results from the same domain (with city specific sub domains), I was wondering, is it really good for the end User?, and then I thought it could possibly a bug in the Search Giant, because I certainly see a flaw and more than technical bug I will call it as Usability Problem as only one result is enough as all the pages hold the same contents.

Well I know and accept that Google considers sub-domain as different website, but then as far as I know Google also do not consider different pages with exactly same content moreover Google may ban the duplicate pages. Considering these facts, how should we take the above search listings?
I hope Google will notice this posting and take care of this problem soon.