Optimizing your very large site for search

We get asked it a lot. “How do I get more coverage for my site?” Over the past couple of weeks on the Webmaster Center blog, we have been sharing strategies for large sites to help them optimize their sites for search. The series, called “Optimizing your very large site for search,” covered four important areas we believe a large site should look at to improve its relevance and coverage:

Part 1

We started by focusing on reducing the surface area of your site by removing and canonicalizing your URLs. Reducing URLs that are redundant or unnecessary will make room for the ones that are. This post offers some practical suggestions on how to make fewer URLs a reality.

Part 2

After removing redundant URLs, we focused on the need to optimize for crawl by ensuring you are compressing your site and telling us which content is new or recently updated. This helps us focus on crawling the latest and greatest content.

Part 3

The third post is all about producing content in a way that ensures it is crawled. Despite improvements in Silverlight and Flash, it is still difficult for us to ensure all of your content makes it into the index. This post offers some suggested workarounds and advice when using these advanced technologies.

Part 4

To wrap things up, we look at content from a big site perspective and offer some suggested content management strategies for ensuring your site’s rapid growth doesn’t hinder the ability of your content to be accessible to users and, as a result, suffer in ranking.

In the end, everyone on the Live Search team has a vested interest in seeing all sites reach their optimum rank for the content they provide to users. Some might mistakenly believe that large sites have an automatic advantage with search engines based merely on their size and quantity of content. But that large size can actually be a disadvantage when webmasters don’t thoughtfully consider how their sites are used by end users. If you take the time to optimize your large sites for your users, those optimizations will have a very positive effect on your ranking with search engines.

–Jeremiah Andrick, Program Manager, Live Search Webmaster Center

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