The Search Light Newsletter
The Search Light Newsletter
  Guiding your site to the top of the search engines | 14 Dec 2004 - Vol 4 Issue #5  

In this issue...

How to Create a Favicon For Your Web Site

FAQ1: Multiple Domains

FAQ2: Google Keyword Sandbox

Exclusive Discount Offer for SEC

How to Create a Favicon For Your Web Site
By Kalena Jordan

Ever see those little custom icons next to a web site listing in your favorites folder or on your browser address bar? Have you ever wondered how to create one for your own site? Well I'm going to teach you in this article.
The icons are called "favicons", a contraction of the phrase "favorite icons". To see an example, go to Search Engine College and bookmark the site (or add to your "favorites" list). Now close your browser window and open a new one. Click on your bookmarked sites or favorites list and find the site you just bookmarked. See the tiny mortarboard graphic next to the listing? That's a favicon. It makes the site stand out from all the others in your favorites list. If you click on that site, the favicon will even load next to the URL in your browser address bar from now on.
Cool huh? Like to create a favicon for your own site? It's easier than you think. Here's what you do:

1) Choose an image or symbol that you would like to use to represent your web site. This could be a tiny version of your logo, a graphic or perhaps a stylized version of your company initials. A famous example of this is the "Y!" favicon used by Yahoo! A favicon is meant to reflect the look and feel of a web site or a company logo. Remember it needs to be simple and clear enough to have visual impact when converted to 16 x 16 pixels.
2) Take a high quality version of your chosen image in .JPG or .GIF format and if it isn't already, convert your image to the 256 color Web Safe Palette or the Windows 16 color format (the fewer colors the better).
3) Using your favorite graphics package or image manipulation software, reduce the image down to 16 pixels wide by 16 pixels high, being careful to preserve the image resolution. This is the tricky bit, because you might find your chosen image looks fantastic at the original size and downright silly at 16 x 16 pixels!
Keep experimenting until you are happy with the finished icon. If you can't seem to make it work or you're short on time, you can use a free icon converter like Image Icon Converter to convert your graphic to an icon or use an icon editor such as ImageAuthor to build your icon from scratch.
4) You're nearly done! Now, take your completed icon and save it as "favicon.ico". This is the default icon name that web browsers like Internet Explorer and Netscape look for. If you want to be really clever, you can even create a customized icon for each page on your site - instructions for this can be found at
5) Take your .ico file and copy it into the the root directory of your web site (the main directory that contains all your HTML pages). Now every time a visitor bookmarks your site, your icon is copied into their cache file and displays whenever that visitor returns.
6) To test your finished favicon, get a friend or colleague to bookmark your site and then open a new browser window. You can bookmark your own site but you generally only get one attempt at this so it's best to save it for when you are sure you're happy with your finished favicon. Alternatively, dump your cache and open a new browser window between tries. If you did it correctly, you should see your shiny new favicon appear in your favorites list next to your site listing and also next to your URL in the address field of your browser.
That's it, you're done! You now have an eye-catching icon representing your web site in the favorites list of all your visitors. A professional impact for very little effort.

The above article may be re-published as long as the content remains unchanged and the following paragraph is included at the end of the article, including the URL link:
As well as running her own SEO business, Kalena Jordan manages and tutors at Search Engine College, an online training institution offering instructor-led short courses and downloadable self-study courses in Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Marketing subjects.

   Dear Reader,

Well here we are at the end of another year once again. What a blur this year has been!
You might have noticed a few changes to the newsletter, noticeably the masthead and format? Well my new focus heading into 2005 is educating webmasters about search engine marketing and site promotion and I wanted the Search Light to reflect that.
Rather than reporting on news stories from the search industry as I've done in the past, I want this newsletter to discuss real site promotion issues faced by webmasters every day. I'll still post links to important industry news from time to time, but most of the newsletter will be about covering YOUR questions and making reference to forum threads where these issues have been discussed by others in the same situation.
Got a burning question about search engine marketing or site promotion in general? I want to hear from you. Email me via the link at the bottom of this newsletter and I'll try to post your question and my answer in our next issue.
This month's article was written for those of you trying to promote your sites. It is a mini tutorial about how to create a Favicon for your web site. Not sure what that is? Then read on!

Enjoy this issue and remember to visit Search Engine College to check out our fun online courses in various search engine marketing subjects. There's something for everyone, no matter what your knowledge level! Have a wonderful, safe and happy festive season and I'll be in touch again in the New Year.
Till next time - wishing you high rankings...

  • FAQ1: Multiple Domains
  •   Hi Kalena
    I've recently taken over the web site marketing for our company and I just found out we are promoting 4 different domains via search engines. I read somewhere that this is a bad thing and that you can get banned from engines. Is that true? Thanks for any light you can shed.

    Hi Lucy
    Thanks for your question. The answer is yes and, well... no. Yes it can be a bad thing to promote multiple domains via search engines, but it depends on whether each individual domain contains identical or unique content.
    Having a look at the domains listed in your email, it seems that each contains links to the exact same content. I understand the use of the different domains for marketing and advertising purposes, but what you should be doing is hosting all these extra domains on the same IP address so they resolve to a single site. Most site hosting firms offer this under the term "Parked Domains", meaning when you type in those domains in a browser, they automatically resolve to your main domain.
    Parking the domains on the same IP will prevent the search engines from indexing multiple sites and penalizing you for trying to sp@m them using duplicate content. Forget the idea of your site being banned from search engines though. This is highly unlikely and only happens in extremely blatant cases of search engine abuse.

  • FAQ2: Google Keyword Sandbox
  •   Hello
    I keep reading about the people using the Google Keyword Sandbox for to research good keywords to target in Google, but I can't find the site. Can you help?

    Hi Rishi
    You'll find the Keyword Sandbox here. It's simply a tool to help Google AdWords advertisers pinpoint the best keywords to target with their ads. People use it even if they aren't Adwords advertisers because it has very useful data on the popularity of various keyword searches in Google.

  • Exclusive Discount Offer for SEC
  •   As a valued subscriber of The Search Light, we are pleased to provide you with an exclusive discount coupon for redemption towards the course/s of your choice at Search Engine College.
    The coupon will give you a 15% discount on your next purchase at Search Engine College and is valid until 31st December 2004.
    CLICK HERE to receive your coupon!

     ::  email us
     ::  visit our site

    phone: +612-6655-9216

    Search Engine College · 18-20 Dowle Street · Bellingen · NSW · 2454 · Australia

    This email was sent by The Search Light Newsletter.
    Update your profile |Instant removal with SafeUnsubscribe™ | Privacy Policy.

    Powered by
    Constant Contact