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February 23, 2010

How Can I Get My Website Listed In Search Engines?

This is one of the most common question for a new website owner.

My short answer is “make sure your site is optimized with the best keywords, have great content people are interested in and get more incoming links <<shameless link

The Yoga Foundation - Number One Google Rank

The truth is if you want to do it right, the investment in time it takes to learn more about these techniques will benefit you and your business with better placement in the search engines.

Fortunately there are loads of FREE ways to market your website that often lead to high rankings in the search engines.

These ways work best when combined together. Picking one or two may help but optimal results will come from combining all of the following suggestions into one effort.

Provide Quality Content

The best way to give yourself the chance of coming up in search engine results is to have interesting content and lots of it.  Make sure it is information your audience wants to read and would want to link to (for example, on their twitter page).  Many people are using blogs as a way to build great content into their site.  It also doesn’t hurt to see if you have a niche and then include content on your site about that niche. (ie: Yoga Teacher Training in Long Island, NY or Stock Options, Covered Call Writing and Exit Strategies )

Submit Your URL To The Major Search Engines and Directories

While other techniques such as building backlinks to your site are preferred methods of getting your site indexed in the search engines, it is still good practice to tell them you are there. Submit your website to the major search engines and directories here:

DMOZ (Open Directory Project – ODP): This is the first place I always start. It is the most comprehensive human edited directory of the Web and can take a while to get listed (at least 2 weeks) but companies such as AOL, Google and Netscape use the ODP as their source of information to run their directories. To submit your site, you need to determine what category to place your business in. For example if you are a Reiki Practitioner in New York, you would navigate over to this page and then hit the “Suggest URL” button on the top of the page. Start out by going to the DMOZ homepage and searching for the directory you want to see your site listed in. Once you are there, hit the “Suggest URL” button and follow the instructions.

Google:  A good place to start for Google is their Submit Your Content section.  From there, you can choose to Add Your URL (where you submit your site).  For business owners who want to list their location of business, we strongly recommend adding your business to Google Local (to get listed in Google Maps).

Yahoo: Start here for Yahoo . There you will find a host of things you can do through Yahoo. While the first link on that page is what we are after here, Submit Your Site For Free, if you have a budget you may want to consider adding your site to the Yahoo Directory ($299/year at the time of this writing).  If you are just starting out and want a great starting point, this is a good one.  It is the authority of directories and will only help to be listed here when being considered by other directories for inclusion.

MSN/Bing: Submit Your URL to Bing here.  Jut like Google, if you have a location you want to list, you can do so for free at Bing’s Local Listing Center

Pay Sites (Directories) To Consider: Business.com, Best Of The Web

Start Social Networking

In basic terms, social networking can be utilized as an easy way to bring more attention to your business, get in front of current and potential customers and colleagues, share information with your network and build a larger network.  All of these sites will provide you with a free backlink to your website, which is of value to your website coming up in searches and becomes of increasing value the more you utilize these social networking sites.  Here are some we recommend:

Twitter – Is a social networking and microblogging service that allows you answer the question, “What are you doing?” by sending short text messages 140 characters in length, called “tweets”, to your friends, or “followers.”

Facebook – It’s no longer just for college kids who want to post their party pics. Businesses vie for advertising opportunities, event promotion and more on this social-networking site.

LinkedIn – LinkedIn is a popular networking site where alumni, business associates, recent graduates and other professionals connect online.

YouTube – From the fashion industry to Capitol Hill, everyone has a video floating around on YouTube. Shoot a behind-the-scenes video from your company’s latest commercial or event to give customers and clients an idea of what you do each day.

Yahoo Answers – Start fielding Yahoo! users’ questions with this social-media Q&A service. Search for questions in your particular areas of expertise by clicking categories like Business & Finance, Health, News & Events and more. If you continue to dole out useful advice and link your answer to your company’s Web page, you’ll quickly gain a new following of curious customers.

If you have a blog or are continuously adding new content on your website, utilize these Social Bookmarking sites to allow others to find and share them:

Digg – Digg has a huge following online because of its optimum usability. Visitors can submit and browse articles in categories like technology, business, entertainment, sports and more.

Reddit -Upload stories and articles on reddit to drive traffic to your site or blog. Submit items often so that you’ll gain a more loyal following and increase your presence on the site.

Delicious – Social bookmark your way to better business with sites like del.icio.us, which invite users to organize and publicize interesting items through tagging and networking.

StumbleUpon – You’ll open your online presence up to a whole new audience just by adding the StumbleUpon toolbar to your browser and “channel surf[ing] the Web. You’ll “connect with friends and share your discoveries,” as well as “meet people that have similar interests.”

Technorati – If you want to increase your blog’s readership, consider registering it with Technorati, a network of blogs and writers that lists top stories in categories like Business, Entertainment and Technology.

(Content above taken from from  50 Social Sites That Every Business Needs a Presence on)

Online Advertising

Online advertising is another good way to get your website to come up in search engines.  Besides coming up as a “sponsored ad” (right hand column ads in google, yahoo, etc) it can help your site come up in organic search results as well.

Public Relations

Public Relations is one of the best ways to reach your target audience as well as build valuable backlinks to your site at the same time.  Here is an example I highly suggest:

Do some Google searches on topics that you are well versed in.  Find a blog(s) in your industry (you can use Google’s Blog Search). Look through the blog and think to yourself “can i write an article for this blog that would add to it’s value?”  Contact the blog owner and offer your expertise and experience as a “guest writer” and tell them you would like to write a “guest post” on their blog.

To sum up, getting indexed in the search engines is not difficult.  Just submit your URL to their spiders.  It’s getting to the top that is the tough part.

Our recommendation is to concentrate on building keyword rich content and then get backlinks via social networking, public relations, online advertising and submit your site to many of the free online directories under your specific category. Build your network and tap into it when you have news and important information you want to share. If you do this right and do it on a regular basis, you will notice a jump in search engine traffic.

Contact Success By Design for all your web development needs.

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