In this chapter, we will examine the major elements of how to assess the search engine friendliness of your site. Having your site accessible to search engines enables search engines to discover what content is on your website. Then, when the search engines receive a search query, they can consider whether your content is a match for it.
As we discussed in the introduction to Chapter 2, search engine crawlers are basically software programs. This provides them with certain strengths and weaknesses. Publishers must adapt their websites to make the job of these software programs easier—in essence, leverage their strengths and make their weaknesses irrelevant. If you can do this, you will have taken a major step forward toward success with SEO.
Developing an SEO-friendly site architecture requires a significant amount of communication and planning due to the large number of factors that influence the ways a search engine sees your site, and the large number of ways in which a website can be put together, as there are hundreds (if not thousands) of tools that web developers can use to build a website, many of which were not initially designed with SEO in mind.
The first step is to ensure that your site can be found and crawled by search engines. This is not as simple as it sounds, as there are many popular web design and implementation constructs that the crawlers may not understand.