Does validation impact your online advertising?

validate your code

Why are the search engines moving towards rewarding validated websites with better listings?

There are plenty of opinions regarding validation and the benefits therein - robots are computer programs that do not care about what the human see's or what the human clicks on - but rather looks at what links and content are parsed correctly. We build sites to get visitors to call us, or email us. We don't really consider what is best for the bots. Is this tragically flawed? Should we care about the bots that are sent out to get information from the Internet?

 

Should our site pass mustard with the world wide web consortium as far as it's coding is concerned? Many say it's a waste of time since the search engines don't seem to discriminate against a site that has invalid code, or do they? Some of us purists claim that a perfectly coded site will do comparitively well (vs the same site with improper coding). We of course claim proper coding is a must. In fact we think that search engines owe it to themselves to make sure that 100% of the sites listed are valid and reliable by www.w3c.org.

 

One element of validated pages is that a validated page will weigh less than your invalid page. In the case of this site the pages now weigh 40% less than they did before we moved to a strict XHTML design - and so what? What's the point? Well folks imagine your favorite search engine cared about your surfing experience. Don't you think they would want your pages to load faster (all other factors remaining the same). Don't you think they would make more money if in the four hours you spend surfing the Internet each night you visit 40% more sites and click on 40% more links. Are you starting to see why it is in the search engine's best interest to favor websites that adhere to a valid code standard.

 

Another lost point in the arguement against validation is that search engine bots will cover more code when they are scanning valid error free pages, that is a fact. Imagine if the entire Internet was coded in valid strict XHTML code for three months. Don't you think Google would index the 8.3 billion pages more often and don't you think saving Google resources makes for good business (if you own Google stock it certainly is)? Don't you think the code to content ratio would be lower in our three month perfect world and wouldn't you like to see great content listed on the first couple of pages of your favorite search query? Us too.

 

This last point is not etched in stone or anything but "usually" valid markup also means there is a better chance that the rest of the important code of the site is in order, and since this proper code will have a bigger influence on the search engines, therefore you can count on better listings from valid code (all other things being equal). Put it this way, the better and more valid your code the better chance you get higher listings for your preferred keyword and the better the odds that more people see your site. If that is not the best reason to validate your code what is?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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