SEARCH ENGINES FOR PROMOTION
There are many "search engines" out there that will list your site, and
this service is usually free. This is not as great for you as it sounds. For one thing,
your site will be listed according to how it is set up now, and relisting it after you
have fine-tuned it can be harder than getting it listed the first time. If your visitors
see your site when is quite undone or one that is really lacking in substance, they won't
come back again to see how great you make it in the end.
FREE VERSUS PAID SEARCH ENGINES
Many search engines now charge to be listed. Even some of these offer a
free listing but warn that it could take months - if they get around to actually
listing your site at all. If you need to build your customer base quickly, this may be the
way for you to go. With some search engines, you pay per click. That means that you don't
pay because your listing is simply shown, you pay only when someone clicks to the link to
your site. This is especially good if you have something to sell that can cover the cost
of the paid click throughs.
SEARCH ENGINES AND DIRECTORIES FOR PROMOTION
There are actually two kinds of services out there where you can list
your site. One is the search engine, and the other is a directory. The directory is the
best source of traffic, if you can get listed, because most search engines get their
listings directly from the directories. Getting listed can be really tough. Directories
have live people instead of robots, and these people actually look at your site to judge
several things: if it really offers what you claim it does; if your site is working or not;
if the category that you chose is the right one for your site; if you have padded your
content with the same "keywords" over and over to try to get a better ranking in their
listings. Even some of these now require payment to be listed. Because the directories use
live people, getting listed there does take months. If you chose the wrong category, they
might not list you at all (and they don't tell you this, so you wait and wait in silence).
So read their directions carefully and do exactly as they say, then don't submit your site
over and over - this could get them upset enough to put you on the "forget this one" list.
But, since directory personnel will take so long to even look at your site, you can list
with directories before your site is perfect - which is not the case with search engines.
Listing your site with search engines is easy enough to do on your own. It just takes time. Or, there is always a service that
will list your site for you. Of course, you pay a fee for such express service. Another
option still is to learn how the pros do it with a book like Top 5 Ranking In Google Guaranteed.
RANKING HIGHER IN SEARCH ENGINE LISTINGS
Keywords For Higher Ranking
Each search engine lists a site based on certain criteria, and your
site may be totally lacking in some of these areas. Some use robots which scan through the
first page looking for "keywords" you've used on the page itself. They also read your list
of keywords in your meta tags. This is a list of words people might use as a search for
content like yours. There is a limit on the size of this list which you should not exceed
(see how to check this later). And, short phrases will get you up to ten times as many hits
as individual words. For example, "red baron" is much better than "red, baron" because
people looking for information on the Red Baron probably won't search for baron or red
alone. If they are, they're not thinking. And, "red baron" will work for those who search
for "RED BARON," "Red Baron" or "red baron."
Many search engines rank your site by how much content you have and if your content
matches your keywords. It doesn't work to use popular keywords if they have nothing to do
with your site. That could get your site blackballed instead. Even overuse of appropriate
keywords in your keyword meta tag can get your site refused (three times is the general
Headers Improve Search Engine Ranking
Even a site with a first page full of content can get a low ranking.
Several things can improve this. One is to cut your content into small paragraphs (like
we've done here) and add a title to as many of those paragraphs as you can, called headers.
A header to a robot must contain header tags (h plus a number for size). Still better is to
make these headers also bold with bold (b) or "strong." And, headers are a perfect way to
add keywords to your content. Your headers should contain a word or phrase describing your
content. For example, "Headers" is not as good as "Headers Promote Your Site."
Titles For Search Engine Descriptions
The title of your page is listed as your title in the search engine
listings. You should give your site a real title by adding your title in the space your
software provides. And, you can give your site a more detailed title by using the title
meta tag. If you do neither, the title in the search engine listings will be "Name" or
"Title" instead, maybe even "Home Page" - now that would really set you apart from the
other home pages!
What about a page that has no title on it at all? You also want to add a title to your
page. This not only looks good, but it is counted in addition to your title meta tag toward
search engine ranking. But, the robots read words. If your title is actually an image, at
least use an "alt=" description in your image link. At least add the words from your title
below the title image (like we did on this page).
Your web site software may have a "title" part for you to fill in. You could put your
site's title only, or you could add a short description also. See how much you can fit
in their space.
Don't Confuse Search Engine Robots
A column of ads can cause the robot to list links to other sites for
your description. Instead, decide yourself what the description should say by adding a
description meta tag. A long line of script at the top of your page can confuse the robot
and send it away until you submit your site again. You won't know if this happens because
they don't send you a note.
If the first page on your site is one large image map, robots think your site is void of
any content and rank your site at the bottom of the list. With lists getting into
300,000 to 3,000,000 each, the bottom is a dark and lonely hole.
Links As Free Promotion
Some search engines judge your site mainly by how many other sites have
your link on their pages. (Actually, it is only the first one or two pages that count.)
Your site may have the exact title that someone else has, but you could be getting a lower
ranking if the other site has many people linking to it (which makes it seem more popular)
and yours does not.
You can do a search for sites related to your own and ask if they would add a link to your
web page on their site. You don't want to look for sites that have the same content as
yours - why would you help advertise the other and risk losing traffic to them. Look for
a complementary topic so you could both help each other. Be sure to add a link to your
site at the bottom of your email (your signature). Post questions in the news areas and
chat rooms - which will show your signature. The more places your link can be seen, the
more people may come for a visit.
Top 5 Ranking In