Search engine listing


M

Michelle

Once a website is uploaded, how does one get it listed on the various search
engines & how does one get it at the top of the search engine list of similar
sites? TIA.
 
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D

DavidF

Google SEO or "search engine optimization" for an open ended discussion
about your question. I see that there are only 194,000,000 hits for just
those three words.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Search_engine_optimization

http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=35291

In Publisher go to Tools > Web page options and you have the option of
entering a description of the page and keywords. The description is probably
more important...

The search engines will likely find your site but it will take time. You can
also submit your site. As to a top ranking don't hold your breath. Beware
the 1000s of offers you will get to give you a top ranking..most are BS. Do
a search for sites similar to your site...how many hits do you get? Ask
yourself how the SEO services can make the same promise to thousands of
other websites? Save your money.

Use print media, your business cards, newspapers, and all other advertising
to push people to your website. How do you target your market group now? Add
the URL of your website to everything. Rather than getting obsessed with a
top ranking ask yourself how will you get your local target group to look at
your site.

Exchange links with other top sites or get other sites to include your URL.
The more sites that point to your site the higher the ranking. But be
careful...some link exchange services will actually hurt your ranking as
they are recognized as bogus.

Like I said, this is an open ended subject and I have just highlighted some
of the things to think about. I am sure others can share a lot more
thoughts, and that is why I suggest googling the subject. Just don't get
overly obsessed with it...just remember that content is king. Write
something unique and you will get a high placement.

DavidF
 
M

Michelle

Thank you David, for your as usual excellent answer. I'm very grateful to
you & others like you who are so knowledgeable and will freely impart their
knowledge to those of us who require it.
Many thanks indeed.
 
M

Michelle

Thanks for that link. This is so much more complicated than I thought. I
was thrilled when I finally got my website up & running, only to find when I
Google it - NOTHING! So now I have to learn a lot more about running a
website than simply designing it and uploading it with no previous experience
(however simple it is) :/

Your link has the following very interesting information:

"P.S. Many folks confuse hits with actual visitors. Hits are NOT a good
indicator of how many actual visitors you are receiving. You need to know
exactly how many visitors you are receiving, how many of those are unique
visitors, and of course how many pages they are viewing while visiting.

Define: hit

As used in reference to the World Wide Web, hit means a single request from
a web browser for a single item from a web server; thus in order for a web
browser to display a page that contains 3 graphics, 4 hits would occur at the
server: 1 for the HTML page, and one for each of the 3 graphics. Hits are
often used as a very rough measure of load on a server, e.g. Our server has
been getting 300,000 hits per month. Because each hit can represent anything
from a request for a tiny document (or even a request for a missing document)
all the way to a request that requires some significant extra processing
(such as a complex search request), the actual load on a machine from 1 hit
is almost impossible to define."

This was to be my next question - how does one install a hit counter? It
would almost seem by the above that a Hit Counter is a waste of time?
 
D

DavidF

IMHO hit counters are indeed a waste of time.

If you want one you can google for one. They make free javascript based ones
that you can install via the insert html code fragment feature.

Alternatively I think that almost every webhost already offers you webstats
of one form or the other. Go to your control panel on your site and look
around, or read the FAQs for where to access them for your site. Those stats
will provide meaningful information, not just provide a show for your
viewers like a hit counter will.

Web design is an open ended endeavor, but don't let it overwhelm you. It may
take a while but the search engines will find you. Heck, if you posted your
URL on this forum, that alone would probably be enough for it to be found
and crawled by Google and others. Just remember to KISS, make sure your
content is worth reading and I would highly recommend that you test your
site in both IE and FireFox and make sure your site is crossbrowser
compatible. It has been our experience that if it works in both those
browsers then it will probably work in most of the common browsers. Download
and install FF and when you install it make sure to opt out of making it
your default browser and it should not create any problems for you.

I mentioned the concept of KISS above...one of the most common mistakes made
by beginners is to add too many bells and whistles to their sites that
distract from the message. Ask yourself when you get ready to add such
things as a hit counter, how does this improve the viewers experience and
help communicate my message? Remember that just because you can do something
doesn't mean you should. Here is another of my favorite links:
http://www.webpagesthatsuck.com/

Good luck...have fun, and feel good about how much you have already
accomplished.

DavidF
 
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M

Michelle

Ok, David, regarding getting Google to list my website, when I am on the page
'Verify Website' and it asks for Verification Method it gives a Meta Tag that
I must insert i.e "Copy the meta tag below, and paste it into your site's
home page. It should go in the <head> section, before the first <body>
section."

Now, where do I insert that Meta Tag exactly? In other words, what is
regarded as the <head> section? I'm using Publisher 2007. Thanks!

ps. The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know!
 
D

DavidF

You cannot easily access the head section of a Publisher web. You would have
to edit the html code manually using NotePad or some other editor...not
realistic for Publisher users. If you use the insert > html code fragment
feature that only inserts into the body. If memory serves there is another
way to do that verification...put some text file or something in the root
directory. Go back and read those directions. Use that if you must...many
don't waste their time.

DavidF
 
M

MAURH

DavidF would you mind if I added something here?

Michelle, to help the search engines to find your website, it will be
helpful if you tell them that you are there. You can go to
http://www.google.com/addurl/?continue=/addurl and submit your URL to Google
and then repeat the process for all the other search engines, or you can
simply go here http://www.addme.com/ . It's free and will submit your URL to
the top 20 search engines in one go.

I agree with DavidF though, beware of SEO companies offering to optimize
your site. On the first page of Google are 10 websites and whatever SEO
companies offer and however hard they work, not everyone can get onto that
first page. However, you can do much to improve your chances, but it can
take a while.
Good, relevant content on your pages is important and adding good
description and keywords to your site does help. When choosing your
keywords, ask yourself which word or phrase you would enter into a search
engine to find a site such as yours. Make that word or phrase one of your
keywords and then include it in the content of your home page. Don't overdo
it and it must be relevant to the story, otherwise the search engine will
penalise you.

To show you what I mean, enter the words 'Devon Cliffs' into Google. Now go
to page 2 and scroll down to a website 'devonviewcaravans.co.uk, I think
it's about 6th or 7th down. Now click on the word 'Cached'. This will tell
you when Google crawled this site, but also on the home page of the website
that comes up, the words 'Devon and Cliffs' are highlighted. That's because
they are two of the keywords and two of the most used words when people are
searching for this kind of site. You will also see that although the words
appear quite frequently, they are very relevant to the story on the page.

As for the hit counter, my hosting company, 1&1, provide all the statistics
that I need, including how many visitors to my site and more importantly,
when. In addition to this, they tell me how many pages were viewed and how
many page views per visit. They also provide me with information like
location of the visitor, how visitors found my website, i.e. URL and Domain
and even which browser and operating system was used. The stats also tell me
which were the popular pages and most frequently required and one that I
have found the most helpful, any Error pages or pages that didn't load
correctly. This gives you the opportunity to look at your pages and find any
errors.
So if you have a hosting company, look at the statistics they offer and you
may find you don't need to add a hit counter to your website.

Good luck

Maureen
 
D

DavidF

Maureen,

Thanks for the additional information and perspective. There are no
absolutes and the more opinions the better. I hope others add their thoughts
about SEO, etc.

DavidF
 
M

Michelle

Hi Maureen
Thanks so much for your great info. I submitted my URL to the link you gave
:
http://www.addme.com/ and it has asked me to do the following:

"Congratulations
Your free search engine submission is complete!
Please make sure you put this link below on your page, that's all we ask in
exchange for our great service! Just copy and paste the code below into your
page!
Search Engine Submission - Addme.com
<!-- START OF ADDME LINK -->
<a href="http://www.addme.com/submission/free-submission-start.php">Search
Engine Submission - AddMe</a>
<!-- END OF ADDME LINK --> "

Now where exactly in the website would I cut & paste this link?
Many thanks!!
 
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M

Michelle

Well that's way above my capabilities at present so I'll just leave it:)
Thanks.
 
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M

MAURH

Hi Michelle,

Personally if I was going to add this link to any of my pages I would put
it on my 'Useful Links' page, but if you don't have one of those you can add
it to any of your pages where it won't interfere with your page content.

You need to insert it via your HTML code fragment. So, highlight the code
starting at the <!-- then go to Edit >Copy, if you copy the code you are
sure to get it correct. Then open your pub. doc to the page where you want
the link to appear and go to Insert >HTML code fragment. In the box that
appears, paste your code, control V will do this. Click OK and on your web
page will appear a box with the code inside. You can change the size of the
box and make it small, but you will need to place it where you want the link
to appear. When you've placed the code in the correct place, do a page
preview and you will see the link. If you click on the link it will take you
to the AddMe website. Just note that the link will not appear until you
either do a web preview or publish your site.

Just one other thought about getting your website on Google pages, of course
there is one way to guarantee that your site is on page one and that is to
pay for the privilege. You will have noticed on the right hand side of
Google's pages are 'Sponsored Links'. They will put your link there and you
pay a fee each time someone clicks on it. But the link will only stay there
whilst you pay. Here is the link to Google AdWords.
https://www.google.com/accounts/ServiceLogin?service=adwords&cd=null&hl=en-US&ltmpl=regionald&passive=true&ifr=false&alwf=true&continue=https://adwords.google.com/select/gaiaauth?apt=None&ugl=true&medium=link&sourceid=awo&subid=uk-en-et-symh

Getting other websites to link into your site or doing exchange links with
other sites, can also help. But I agree with what DavidF says, there are no
absolutes with this and if you don't pay, it will take a while to get your
site noticed. The search engines will find you, just don't expect it to
happen quickly.

Good luck.

Maureen
 

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