Plan to use MetaTags. They are your friends.
This tells the browser the date and time when the document will be
considered "expired." If a user is using Netscape Navigator, a request for
a document whose time has "expired" will initiate a new network request
for the document. An illegal Expires date such as "0" is interpreted by
the browser as "immediately." Dates must be in the RFC850 format, (GMT
<META HTTP-EQUIV="expires" CONTENT="Wed, 26 Feb 1997 08:21:57 GMT">
This is another way to control browser caching. To use this tag, the value
must be "no-cache". When this is included in a document, it prevents
Netscape Navigator from caching a page locally.
<META HTTP-EQUIV="Pragma" CONTENT="no-cache">
These two tags can be used as together as shown to keep your content
currentóbut beware. Many users have reported that Microsoftís Internet
Explorer refuses the META tag instructions, and caches the files anyway.
So far, nobody has been able to supply a fix to this "bug." As of the
release of MSIE 4.01, this problem still existed.
This tag specifies the time in seconds before the Web browser reloads the
document automatically. Alternatively, it can specify a different URL for
the browser to load.
<META HTTP-EQUIV="Refresh" CONTENT="0;URL=http://www.newurl.com">
Be sure to remember to place quotation marks around the entire CONTENT
attributeís value, or the page will not reload at all.
This is one method of setting a "cookie" in the userís Web browser. If you
use an expiration date, the cookie is considered permanent and will be
saved to disk (until it expires), otherwise it will be considered valid
only for the current session and will be erased upon closing the Web
<META HTTP-EQUIV="Set-Cookie" CONTENT="cookievalue=xxx;expires=Wednesday,
21-Oct-98 16:14:21 GMT; path=/">
This one specifies the "named window" of the current page, and can be used
to prevent a page from appearing inside another framed page. Usually this
means that the Web browser will force the page to go the top frameset.
<META HTTP-EQUIV="Window-target" CONTENT="_top">
Although you may not have heard of PICS-Label (PICS stands for
Platform for Internet Content Selection), you probably will soon. At the
same time that the Communications Decency Act was struck down, the World
Wide Web Consortium (W3C) was working to develop a standard for labeling
online content (see www.w3.org/PICS/
). This standard became the Platform for Internet Content Selection (PICS).
The W3Cís standard left the actual creation of labels to the "labeling
services." Anything which has a URL can be labeled, and labels can be
assigned in two ways. First, a third party labeling service may rate the
site, and the labels are stored at the actual labeling bureau which
resides on the Web server of the labeling service. The second method
involves the developer or Web site host contacting a rating service,
filling out the proper forms, and using the HTML META tag information that
the service provides on their pages. One such free service is the
generator that Vancouver-Webpages provides. It is based on the
Vancouver Webpages Canadian PICS ratings, version 1.0, and can be used as
a guideline for creating your own PICS-Label META tag.
Although PICS-Label was designed as a ratings label, it also has
other uses, including code signing, privacy, and intellectual property
rights management. PICS uses what is called generic and specific labels.
Generic labels apply to each document whose URL begins with a specific
string of characters, while specific labels apply only to a given file. A
typical PICS-Label for an entire site would look like this:
<META http-equiv="PICS-Label" content='(PICS-1.1 "http://vancouver-webpages.com/VWP1.0/"
l gen true comment "VWP1.0" by "email@example.com" on
"1997.10.28T12:34-0800" for "http://www.hisdomain.com/" r (P 2 S 0 SF -2 V
0 Tol -2 Com 0 Env -2 MC -3 Gam -1 Can 0 Edu -1 ))'>
Keyword and Description attributes
Chances are that if you manually code your Web pages, youíre aware of the
"keyword" and "description" attributes. These allow the
search engines to easily index your page using the keywords you
specifically tell it, along with a description of the site that you
yourself get to write. Couldnít be simpler, right? You use the keywords
attribute to tell the search engines which keywords to use, like this:
<META NAME ="keywords" CONTENT="life, universe, mankind, plants,
relationships, the meaning of life, science">
By the way, donít think you can spike the keywords by using the same
word repeated over and over, as most search engines have refined their
spiders to ignore such spam. Using the META description attribute, you add
your own description for your page:
<META NAME="description" CONTENT="This page is about the meaning of
life, the universe, mankind and plants.">
Make sure that you use several of your keywords in your description.
While you are at it, you may want to include the same description enclosed
in comment tags, just for the spiders that do not look at META tags. To do
that, just use the regular comment tags, like this:
<!--// This page is about the meaning of life, the universe, mankind
and plants. //--!>
More about search engines can be found
ROBOTs in the mist
On the other hand, there are probably some of you who do not wish your
pages to be indexed by the spiders at all. Worse yet, you may not have
access to the robots.txt file. The robots META attribute was
designed with this problem in mind.
<META NAME="robots" CONTENT="all | none | index | noindex | follow |
The default for the robot attribute is "all". This would allow all of
the files to be indexed. "None" would tell the spider not to index any
files, and not to follow the hyperlinks on the page to other pages.
"Index" indicates that this page may be indexed by the spider, while
"follow" would mean that the spider is free to follow the links from this
page to other pages. The inverse is also true, thus this META tag:
<META NAME="robots" CONTENT=" noindex">
would tell the spider not to index this page, but would allow it to
follow subsidiary links and index those pages. "nofollow" would allow the
page itself to be indexed, but the links could not be followed. As you can
see, the robots attribute can be very useful for Web developers. For more
information about the robot attribute, visit the
W3Cís robot paper.
Placement of META tags
META tags should always be placed in the head of the HTML document between
the actual <HEAD> tags, before the BODY tag. This is very important with
framed pages, as a lot of developers tend to forget to include them on
individual framed pages. Remember, if you only use META tags on the
frameset pages, you'll be missing a large number of potential hits.
<TITLE>EgoTag.com - Web Site Design, Web
Site Designs, Internet Consulting</TITLE>
<META content="text/html; charset=windows-1252"
<META NAME="KEYWORDS" CONTENT="Internet Marketing, Web Site Design,
Ecommerce Development, Web Page Design, Ecommerce Solutions, Web Page
Consulting, Online Solutions, Logo Design, Internet Consulting">
<meta name="description" content="Ego Tag is the leader in Web Site
Design, Internet Marketing and full Ecommerce Solutions and Ecommerce
Development. A company specializing in Web Page Design, Online
Solutions, and Internet consulting.">
<META NAME="COPYRIGHT" CONTENT="Copyright 2000 EgoTag.com">
<meta name="robots" content="index,follow">
<META NAME="REVISIT-AFTER" CONTENT="5 days">
<META HTTP-EQUIV="PRAGMA" CONTENT="NO-CACHE">
<META NAME="RATING" CONTENT="General">
<META NAME="RESOURCE-TYPE" CONTENT="document">
<META NAME="DISTRIBUTION" CONTENT="global">
<META NAME="ABSTRACT" CONTENT="Internet Advertising, Ecommerce
Consulting, Flash Animation, Intranet, Web Design, Website Design,
Search Engine Positioning, Web Site Developer, Custom Web Pages,
Domain Name Service, Web Design, Banner Advertising, Shockwave Flash
Developers, Search Engine Submission, WebSite Creation, Search Engine
Services, Web Marketing, Internet Development, Online Marketing,
Online Advertising, and more">
<META NAME="TYPE" CONTENT="EgoTag.com">