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If you really have to use frames (which
I would never advocate because of usability
issues and search engine listings), here's how to create a
framed site which may have a chance on search engines.
People often use frames to provide an easy to maintain site.
Navigation can be kept in a seperate frame (often on the left-hand
side) and therefore be updated just once, it is always visible
when the rest of the page scrolls. The same is true for a
header or a footer that stays static while the content is
scrollable. Some companies like this so that the corporate
logo and contact information are always visible and easy to
find. Using frames on a flash-enabled site is one way
to get content indexed by search engines, as at present
search engines can't spider the content in flash.
As an argument against frames, the easy to update
debate can be quashed by the use of server
side includes which are probably easier to maintain than
frames. And while having the company logo and contact information
visible is important, this can be achieved by having
pages which don't scroll too far down. Frames have many usability
issues, mainly in the form of the url being destroyed and
Frames are bad for search engine optimisation because:
- search engine spiders cannot spider the content
of a site because they cannot follow the links within a
- there is also no body text to index on the main
These two factors can be counteracted by:
- using the <noframes> tag properly
- making sure that the content inside your <noframes>
tag contains links to the rest of your site
The html should look like this:
<title>A keyword rich descriptive title goes here.</title>
<meta name="description" content="A keyword rich description
<meta name="keywords" content="keywords and phrases go
<frame src="navigation.html" name="nav">
<frame src="main.html" name="main">
This is where the textual body content that the main page
contains goes. As with all search engine optimisation, make
sure it is full of relevant keywords.
The search engine will spider this information as it would
a normal html page.
Make sure there are navigational links in the main
body content of all your internal framed pages - many
sites often put these at the bottom of the page. This is useful
for both the search engine to spider and for any user who
finds the site on a search engine, as the page will be orphaned
from its frameset.