Someone asked me last week about dynamically generated web pages and how they ranked with the search engines. Traditionally anything that was dynamically generated did not do well in the search engines; the big test is if your web pages have very long addresses and include symbols, especially a question mark or equal sign – that was not a good sign.
The search engines are getting smarter about dynamically generated pages. All things being equal static pages are easier for the search engines, but the dynamic pages can do well too. Here are a few tips to help improve the ranking of dynamically generated pages:
- Create static links to your most important pages. You might do this on a sitemap or by providing links to pages on your homepage.
- Create turn your dynamic URLs into static URLs. How you do this will depend on the server you use – the following articles can help:
- Create static copies of key pages to replace the dynamic pages for the search engines. If the dynamic pages still exist, be sure to include a robots.txt file that disallows the dynamic pages in order to ensure that these pages aren’t seen as having duplicate content.
- The more complex the page, the more difficult it is for the search engines. If you try to keep the dynamic portions of your site to fewer than three, that will help. A script that has to pull from too many resources will make the job more difficult for the search engines.
- Add titles to the dynamic pages. I work with one company that uses a Content Management System that creates pages dynamically. We put titles onto each page but about every 6 months I get a call because they have fallen off the search engines rankings almost entirely. Without fail it’s because the system has been upgraded and has deleted our good title tags in lieu of something too generic.
- If your pages are static but your URLs are dynamic, look into getting static addresses just to make things easier for the search engines.