A List Apart: Ambient Findability

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a big deal these days. Websites are using all kinds of tricks to try to bolster their search engine rankings. What it often comes down to, however, is simpler stuff.

A List Apart has a great excerpt from Ambient Findability, a new book by Peter Morville about making sensible website changes to improve the "findability" of content:

  • Using semantic markup so your content is easy to index
  • Structuring content to focus on what your service is
  • Avoiding techniques that can't be spidered by search engines: javascript, flash, dhtml
  • Use RSS feeds to encourage subscriptions and provide meaningful backlinks to your content

Morville goes on to elaborate why this isn't just a marketing concern:

Connecting users with the content and services we design and build is part of our broader mission. It's not good enough to create a great product and expect someone else to worry about how people will find it. Together with form and function, findability is a required element of good design and engineering.

Recommended reading for anyone involved in a website that aims to be useful.

Portrait of Matt Ryall

About Matt

I’m a technology nerd, husband and father of four, living in beautiful Sydney, Australia.

My passion is building software products that make the world a better place. For the last 15 years, I’ve led product teams at Atlassian to create collaboration tools.

I'm also a startup advisor and investor, with an interest in advancing the Australian space industry. You can read more about my work on my LinkedIn profile.

To contact me, please send an email or reply on Twitter.