Trying to make page layout seo friendly

I am trying to create a page layout where the center content is read first,
but for some reason the footer always goes just beneath the center content
and not beneath the left or right columns
Why  and how can i fix it ?
Who is Participating?
Scott Fell, EE MVEConnect With a Mentor Developer & EE ModeratorCommented:
I really wouldn't suggest putting effort into using css to rearrange your page.   If you took a hit in SERP's within the last few months, so did everybody else.  At this point, placing your "main content" above your navigation is not going to change the ranking of your site in google.  

I did a search for: roofing estimating software and the top 3 results and your site which was 11th (pretty good) are summarized below.  I looked at the number of pages on each site and links in (I don't think is very accurate anymore).  More importantly I used to compare keyword/phrase density. Without even doing a search on google and only looking at those results, it would be easy to predict the order in SERP's.  Look how sparse your words/phrases are compared to the others.  

There is not just one thing that will change your ranking. And if you look at the first link I gave you, that does a great job summarizing what is actually important you will do better.  As far as writing, obviously  you can see this is very important.  Hire a good writer. Don't chase after keywords, and use a tool like this to help check the quality of your content.

The point of all of this is your energy will be better utilized by upgrading your content rather then trying to move things around like this. = 647 results = 2 but not very good links = 28 results = 3 links from = 94 results = 0 results = 190 results = 1 result
good videos from webmaterhelp (google spam team)
Scott Fell, EE MVEDeveloper & EE ModeratorCommented:
Moving things around like that is no longer required.  Just make sure your code is valid and semantically correct. But more importantly, have a lot of good content on your subject matter and keep adding content on a regular basis.

Your page is valid but looks a little off.  Go back to keeping your div's in order.
Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
You have no content to push things down.  Extensive testing over many years has shown that people read a page from the top left down to the bottom right.  Just like a printed page.
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isnoend2001Author Commented:
Most of my pages were written about  10 yrs ago from my 40 yrs as a roofer and roofing contractor. Most of the pages were at the top of the seo rankings, but  now others are doing better. I can tell they have copied my content, just rearranged the words a little.
In fact a relative told me he copied ton of articles from many sites and put google adsense
adds on the pages.
Example How to troubleshoot home electrical problems he knows nothing on fixing electrical problems
i have read where the seo robots stop after  reading a page only so far so i am attempting to put the pages contents first.

In the normal flow of my pages layout many pages the footer goes below the longest column
But in the page it seems to be tied to the center column only
Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
Before the <hr> just above the footer, I would put <br clear="all" />.
isnoend2001Author Commented:
the  <br clear="all" />. made no difference
Scott Fell, EE MVEDeveloper & EE ModeratorCommented:
What you read is old.   This is a great article from a very good source and a nice little cheat sheet

Notice the emphasis is on content, human and bot usability, multi device and sharing.
Dave BaldwinConnect With a Mentor Fixer of ProblemsCommented:
I see that it didn't.  After looking a little further, it's obvious why.  Your left and right columns are positioned 'absolute' which takes them out of the normal page flow.  That is completely different than you have done with your other pages.  I looked at 'Download.asp' and I see your 'normal flow' and no section with 'position: absolute;'.  Sections with 'position: absolute;' do not affect the normal sections whose default is 'position: relative;'.
isnoend2001Author Commented:
Thanks Dave none of my pages are positioned absolute. This is some thing that i am experimenting with to see if I could get the content before the left nav column. Seems the only way to make this work would be to make sure the center content is more than the side columns content. In my old table based site i did it using colspan for layout.
Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
With relative position, content 'pushes' the other content in the page flow.  With absolute position, 'flow' doesn't exist inside that container.  I have a customer who designs all his pages with 'position:absolute;' because it acts (to him) like Photoshop does.  It can be a mess to clean up after him at times.  But I've learned how to calculate the position offsets that are needed while he uses Dreamweaver to 'drop and drag' elements to where he wants them.
isnoend2001Author Commented:
Not even sure if i even want to change. It would probably not make any difference in seo,
but on the other hand it would not hurt that i can see.
I figured a hack:
<div style="margin-top: 790px"></div>
Of course most pages would not need this much margin
isnoend2001Author Commented:
padas thanks for taking the time and the links, very informative.
I had not decided to rearrange the layout, just wanted to see if it could be done
Took me about 2 months to change the old table based layout to html5
Thanks to you guys i did it
I made notes on every 160 pages for content improvement.
My most popular page has always been
for years I was #1 on the first page, but now have slipped.
I will try to edit pages and get back
I know the question is closed but just to add my 2 cent
Search engines are clever enough to know what is content and relevant and what is not.
Trying to jig your layout to get your content to appear first in the HTML is a waste of time provided you are marking up your content correctly. (Though you can do it by floating your content)
That means using your H1/2/3 etc tags correctly (one H1 tag to rule them all)
I'm talking about you Roof Estimating and Roofing Tips-How-to etc ;o)
(do you get the sarcasm?)
isnoend2001Author Commented:
Thanks for adding that in the past i never used  the h1-5 at all. Now i see where i need to start using them.Have to read the correct way.
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