How to Use a Content Management System for Search Engine Positioning | 2 | WebReference

How to Use a Content Management System for Search Engine Positioning | 2

How to Use a Content Management System for Search Engine Positioning

Which CMS Application Do You Use And Where Do You Find Them?

For my purposes, the PostNuke Open Source Content Management System works well. But there are many CMS applications available that are open source and are easy to install. They all have a loyal community base with support forums where you can get your questions answered. To access a review of the various CMS’s available and where you can download them, please have a look at:
Note: In order to run such a system on your web site, your web server will need to provide scripting and database support.

Using Search Engine Friendly Themes

Your CMS system will include several templates (also called themes) that you can use on your website, but most likely they won’t be search engine friendly. With little modification, these can be updated to automatically optimize your pages. When you create an article using CMS, you can specify a title, summary and main body. You can modify the theme you and repeat the title in H1 and ALT tags, in bold and italics, etc. You only have to modify the template once and all the pages of your website become automatically optimized! Now, All you have to do is to choose an appropriate title for each article that you add and your pages will get automatically optimized for the keywords you use in your title!

Site Navigation

Generally SEO’s feel that having the navigation links at the bottom or on the right side of your page allow you to position your optimized content towards the beginning of your html page, but users are accustomed to naturally look for a navigation menu towards the top left of the page. If you want to go with your visitor’s intuition at the cost of placing your navigation links at the top of your HTML code, you need to make sure that the links are well optimized with your keywords. It might not be obvious, but attention to the anchor text used in the navigation links is important because these links will appear on all the pages of your site. If you can, try to have at least one of your important keywords in the link that leads to your main page. i.e. Instead of using "Home" use "Your-Keywords" in the link back to your main page; this will have a big impact on the search engine ranking of your main page.

Topical Islands of Related Content

When you add content to your CMS, you would classify it into a topic. A CMS like PostNuke, allows you to choose a category and a topic for each article that you add. The CMS will automatically create links in the chosen category page and topics page. If you define your topics and your categories properly, you can create a brilliant linking strategy. Since your main page links to your topics page and since each topic page contains links to the articles for that topic, it creates a three level sitemap for the search engine spider to follow. Since each article will have a link back to the main page and to the related topic, you can establish islands of targeted topics, which the search engines love. Without a CMS application, you would have manually create all the links every time you added an article, but when you using a customized CMS application, it all happens automatically.


Setting up a CMS managed website that can achieve good search engine rankings is possible if you take care of the key factors as outlined above. As you have seen a properly customized CMS application can help you to gain top search engine rankings.

About the Author

Mufad has successfully set up a high ranking work at home community portal using CMS. He provides his clients with a template driven website using a search engine friendly CMS at:

Created: May 2, 2003
Revised: April 6, 2004