Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Articles
by Mary Gillen

SEO: How Using Keywords in Web-based File Names Increases Readership

Using specific keywords in your Web page or blog post content can help drive traffic to your Web site because it contributes to better rankings in the search engines.

IMPORTANT TO NOTE: A blog post or Web page file name (yes, what you name the file when you save it to your Web server or post ) is also an important place for keywords that search engines like Google consider when gobbling up Web-based content for indexing.

Case in point: I recently uploaded a Web page with the file name of using_social_media.htm to the site. A few days later I noticed a couple of referrals from Google on my site stats page from folks using the phrase online marketing media seminar:

Here's what the Google results page looks like (Wednesday, March 11, 2009)

Google Result Page: How Using Keywords In Blog File Names & Titles Increases Readership by Mary Gillen

You will notice the search term in the Google search box at the top of the screenshot (highlighted in yellow) is online marketing media seminar. As you see, the page shows as Result #4 in the organic results, which means I didn't pay for the listing, but earned it through traditional SEO techniques.

In the #4 results listing, notice the words and phrases highlighted in orange. Google indexed these from the Title of the HTML page, the ALT tag content applied to the mary_gillen logo image at the top of the content, and some of the original content that existed in the HTML BODY tag. But notice the part of the file name (highlighted in yellow) on the last line of the #4 result. The word "media" in the file name helped contribute to the #4 position in Google as a result of someone searching the term phrase online marketing media seminar.

In most Web publishing applications (Web page publishing/blogging platforms), it is important to add keywords to the file name as file names are permanent. And they can contribute to better search engine rankings.

TIP: You can use either dashes or underscores between keywords in your blog posting or HTML page file name. Notice the URL for this page: seo-keywords-filenames.cfm. It could also read seo_keywords_filenames.cfm and be OK with Google.