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I am a search marketing geek. Work as APM for one of the leading companies in UK. Interested in socializing and helping others.

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March 27, 2009

How to Optimize Website for MSN?

Many webmasters ignore optimizing their website for MSN. Even though if you optimize your website for Google, it will automatically show off the results in MSN and Yahoo, but still they have their own indexing process, and as such optimizing the website for them (search engines) would be of great significant importance to the websites.

Optimize for MSN | Website Optimization for MSN | How to Optimize for MSN?

When it comes to optimization of website in MSN, there are several key aspects to be considered. First let us see how live search ranks the website.

The Live Search Ranking Algorithm analyzes the factors
  • the web page content
  • the linking websites (both number and quality), and
  • the relevance of the websites content to keywords

Each time the index is updated, the previous rankings are revised, and as such there is a change in the rankings for the current website.

13 ways to Optimize the website for MSN
The following points should be considered while optimizing the website for MSN,

  1. The first and the fore most task is to submit the website to Live Search
  2. Thereafter sign in to MSN Webmaster tools to know how your website is performing in the Live Search Results
  3. MSNBot is very particular about the Description Tag, this is what is being preferred
    • Use proper relevant description tags.
    • Place descriptive content near the top of each webpage.
    • Use keyword one time in the description tag.
    • Make sure that each webpage has a clear topic and purpose.
    • Add a website description to a Description tag, meta name="description" content="Describe your site here"
  4. Maintain the overall keyword weight of the visible body text of less than 6%. Try to achieve minimum 3% where possible.
  5. Choose a domain name with the business related keyword into it. If a keyword phrase is used then better choose for the keywords seperated by hyphens than underscores.
  6. While naming the pages, try to name them based on the keyword (keyword-phrases) for the domain. The search engines place added relevancy on keywords found in the name of the page, or the URL.
  7. MSN gives ranking honors to sites with an abundance of incoming links. That means the greater the number of incoming links, with the keywords in them as anchor texts, its a boost for the ranking for those keywords.
    Furthermore, make sure that the page of the Website linking to the website is in the MSN index and that it has a strong number of incoming links to that domain as well as having less than 80 links on the page linking to the website.
  8. MSN recommends one topic per page.
    MSN Quote: "The best way to attract people to your site, and keep them coming back, is to design your pages with valuable content that your target audience is interested in.

    In the visible page text, include words users might choose as search query terms to find the information on your site.

    Limit all pages to a reasonable size. We recommend one topic per page.

    An HTML page with no pictures should be under 150 KB," Google appreciates under 100KB.
  9. The sites linking to the websites should be of the same theme or area, not necessarily of the same product as yours website.
  10. The linking strategy can affect the site getting indexed by MSNBot, here is what MSN recommends,
    • Consider validating the HTML, check for all the tags, anchor texts leading to proper webpages and not to deadlinks.
    • Remove the Deadlinks if there are any on the website.
    • If the webage is redirected, then specify the same using 301 or 302 redirect.
    • Use Robots.txt to restrict the robots from accessing the files and directories that are of least importance to the users.
    • MSNBot prefers Static URL's, so try using them.
  11. XML Sitemaps provide the information about the important pages and their relevance to the spiders.
  12. MSN recommends the webpage hierarchy to be completely flat. All the webpages should not be at the maximum of three clicks away from the default page.
  13. MSN provides Guidelines for Webmasters for successfully optimizing and getting the website indexed in MSN.

Important Points
  • To find whether your site is listed in Live search index just do a query site:Your Website Name
  • To list your site in Local Business Results, use Add a Local Business Listing form
  • Don't fill the pages with keywords as they are considered as spam by the search engines.
  • Using Hidden Texts/Links can lead your website out from the search engine results or even getting it banned.
  • Link farms for getting lot of incoming links for higher rank in MSN is considered as SPAM.

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Techfrog said...

Nice article Tushar. I have to admit i was totally unaware of the 'Business listing' service offered by Bing. I like the emphasis that you've mentioned about keyword density, its quite a must specially for Bing and Yahoo.


Thanks TechFrog for your nice comments.

Happy Reading!