How To Optimize Frame Based Webpages

Frames allow you to present webpages in multiple, independent windows or subwindows, where certain information can be kept visible, while content in the other windows are scrolled or replaced. Frames use a master (frameset) page to combine multiple sub-pages to create one HTML page.

Some search engines do not follow links to sub-pages, therefore cannot index the content contained there. However, search engines can, and do, index the content contained within the master page, so as long as the information is placed within a NOFRAMES tag.

<TITLE>A frameset document with NOFRAMES>/TITLE>
<FRAMESET cols="50%, 50%">
<FRAME src="main.html">
<FRAME src="table_of_contents.html">
<P>Here is the >A href="main-noframes.html"> non-frame version of the document.</A></P>
Add your search engine friendly content here.

In general I recommend steering clear frames. Did you know that none of the top 100 websites use frames? There's good reason for that.


  • nternet Explorer and Netscape browsers earlier than version 3.0 do not support frames. So make sure the content within the noframes tag is presentable, as visitors with older browsers will see the content of the noframes tag.
  • Do not include the BODY tag in the frameset page, otherwise the framed page will not display properly.

How To View The Source Code Of Fast Vanishing Webpages

If you have ever tried to view the source code of a page that uses some form of URL redirection or forwarding, you will know how frustrating it can be. More often than not, the redirected page flashes by so quickly that you don't even get a chance to stop the page to view the source code.

Luckily, there is a simple solution. All you have to do is enter "view-source:" followed by the URL into your web browser's address window.

For example:


UPDATE: This trick no longer seems to work on the Internet Explorer web browser. However, I did still get it to work on the Netscape 7.2 browser.

Steven Munro, Director of Unlimited Fun Ltd T/A, who informed me of the problem, says he got it to work on the Mozilla Firefox browser. Thanks Steve! If you get it to work on other web browsers, please let me know.

Can Bold & Strong Text Improve Search Engine Rankings?

Some search engine experts recommend highlighting important keyword phrases in bold to improve relevancy.

For example:

<B>Mike's Marketing Tools</B>
<STRONG>Mike's Marketing Tools</STRONG>

I have yet to come across any proof that this technique works. So I suggest that you try it if you like, to see if it does indeed work. There isn't any downside to this technique, so it may be worth a try.

Some search engine optimizers take it one step further by placing bold tags or strong within header tags. I'm not sure if this does any good, but it may be worth a try.

For example:

<H1><B>Mike's Marketing Tools</B></H1>
<H1><STRONG>Mike's Marketing Tools</STRONG></H1>

Should You Hide Keywords In Comment Tags?

No. None of the major search engines index keywords in comment tags, so do not waste time adding them as part of your search engine optimization strategy.

In case you don't know what comment tags are, here's an example:

<!-- keyword 1, keyword 2, keyword 3 -->

Should You Hide Keywords In Hidden CSS Layers?

Hiding keywords in hidden Cascading Style Sheet (CSS) layers is a technique that search engine optimizers use to add keywords to a page, while keeping it invisible to human visitors. This technique is often used to add text to a splash page, or one containing nothing more than Flash effects.

For example:

<DIV STYLE="visibility: hidden; position: absolute; left:-300; top:-
300;">keywords go here</DIV>

The above example places the hidden layer 300 pixels above and to the left of the visible page. You can add as much text as you wish, since your visitors can't see the text, but search engine spiders can.

The downside is that Internet Explorer and Netscape browser versions earlier than 4.0 do not support CSS layers. They will ignore the style tags but display the content of the style element, which could produce a rather messy page.

I have seen this technique being used, but personally I wouldn't recommend it.

Should You Hide Keywords in Hidden Value Form Tags?

Adding keywords to hidden value form tags is considered spam by all of the major search engines, so stay clear of this practice.

However, it is almost impossible for search engines to detect the difference between genuine hidden value form tags and those added specifically for optimization purposes. That doesn't mean I endorse this practice though. ;o)

Here's an example in case you don't know what hidden value form tags look like:

<INPUT TYPE='hidden' NAME='keyword-phrase' VALUE='keyword phrase'>

Should You Hide Keywords In Style Tags?

Very few, if any, search engines index the content of the Style tag, so do not waste any time on this technique.

Here's an example in case you don't know what Style tags look like:

<SPAN STYLE='keyword phrase'>