I hope you can help a newbie in webmastering, as I have just made a web site and need some help please.
I finished my site and have uploaded it to my web server (using coreftp lite in sftp mode), and it is on the internet (pardon my not wanting to share yet, but I think it needs some alterations before I would want to show it to experienced people like you).
Anyway, after uploading my web site and asking google to crawl it, I have realised it needs to get onto google with search terms that are likely to get it to near the first page. I have researched it a bit and originally thought I need to add meta tags to each page, but have been told that this is not required for google ??? I am confused about that, as I thought you input that which you think your client base would type, and then if typed into google, it would look at those meta tags and match them up. I realise it is more complicated than my limited knowledge understands, but I still thought this was pretty much what meta tags are for.
Secondly, I think I need a site map for google, and have looked at google webmaster tools where they suggested a few third party tools for this, but do not know which is best to use. I made the web site using wysiwyg web builder version 8, and this has a facility to make a site map automatically. Does it make much diffrence which one I use ?
I should explain at this point that I do not know how to write html, hence the use of a wysiwyg type software.
Thirdly, I have enabled hotlink protection at the server for my images (as I am on a shared server with a bandwidth limit), and I would like to know if this would preclude google showing those images in the search results, images page ?
Should I rename all my images to be recognisable names that describe the image (at the moments they are just numbers), again, for google to index them better, or does this not matter.
My last question is about managing the web site; when I want to make changes, do I just alter the original on my computer then upload the entire web site again, and does that then overwrite the existing web site in the server (obviously presuming that the web site page file names are all the same), just as it would do in windows if you made another file of the same name where it would ask if you want to overwrite it ?
I am nervous about how to tackle the above alteration when I know what to do, which is why I am asking about site management.
I tried to ask these questions on the forum for the software as I thought they would know the answers to some of these questions, however, they did not help much, hence my asking here.
If you could offer any advice at all it would be very much appreciated.
Thank you in advance.