Do Frames Affect Ranking?

by: Jon Ricerca

Almost all SEO's agree that using frames will have devasting results on your search engine rankings. Is it true?

We decided to answer this extremely simple question for the two leading search engines using a simple statistical analysis.

The methodology:

I gathered the results of the queries that were naturally performed last month by myself and three associates using the two leading search engines and analyzed them.

I had to visit each page and check the HTML source code to see if frames were in use. I counted the number of pages found that utilized frames for the first 8 rankings.

The results for each of the two leading search engines were kept separate so that we could discover any differences between the two leading search engines for this factor.

The resulting graphs show the number of pages utilizing frames for each ranking.

The Y-axis shows the number of pages found utilizing frames, while the X-axis shows rankings 1 through 8. Here are the graphs for each of the two leading search engines:

The result is very conclusive and very surprising. Frames had no effect on ranking with both of the leading search engines! The SEO gurus are wrong again!

Notes:

1. There was no exercise to attempt to isolate different keywords. I merely took a random sampling of the queries performed by myself and three associates during the month.

Conclusion:

Pages which utilize frames rank no higher nor lower than pages that do not utilize frames on both of the leading search engines.

This is merely a correlation study, so it cannot be determined from this study whether the leading search engines purposefully entertain this factor or not. The actual factors used may be far distant from the factor we studied, but the end result is that these search engines do, in fact, rank pages with frames the same as pages without frames in the study.

Jon Ricerca is one of the leading researchers and authors of the Search Engine Ranking Factor (SERF) reports at SearchEngineGeek.com. For access to the other SERF reports, please visit: http://www.SearchEngineGeek.com