You have spent hours constructing and filling your site with your precious content and products if you are an online store front. Now you need to get the world to see you and come rushing to your site to purchase your products and services. Its time to submit your hard work to the search engines but there are a few things you should know before you submissions start.
Preparing your website for the spiders and crawlers
Before you begin the process of submitting your site to the search engines ensure your site is designed to help the spiders and crawlers collect the important information on your pages and index it correctly. Make sure your key words have been chosen correctly and are consistent with your sites content. Google hates it when keywords are overused and irrelevant. Your site may get indexed as a spam site.
You should also make sure your images are clean and tagged with there relevant information. Using the Alt text code on your images will add more information for search engines to index your images in the image search databases they offer now giving your products and services greater exposure. Ahh and lets not forget about the flash intro. More and more people are choosing to use a flash introduction to their site. Please be aware the Google bot cannot read your flash content as it is presented in a different format so please make sure you put a text link to your second index. Another important requirement is the sitemap. It seems your sitemap is becoming more and more important to Google these days. This will ensure better ranking and your visitors can easily be directed to the page they want straight from the Google search results!
HTML Tags. Make sure they are all correct and intact
Take a look at your title tags. They will appear at the top of your browser window and you visitors will read them. Make sure they contain good relevant keywords and sentences that your targeted visitors will search in the search engines. Google loves good title tags. Meta tags and description seem to be a great debate these days though I tend to make sure my tags are great and my description is luring. I have found my descriptions still appearing in Google results and it only takes five minutes to put them in so I highly recommend putting them in. ALT tags. Make them short and sweet. Dont over do them but make sure they have enough keywords or search phrases entered to help them to show up in Google images search. I have had a great deal of traffic come from image searches.
The robots.txt file
Make sure you have a robots.txt file to filter what the robots can read on your website. This will protect your privacy and keep them away from login areas and other sensitive pages on your site.
Make sure your hyperlinks are not broken
Your links make up every path the spider will crawl. One link down and the pages behind it do not get indexed. Double check all links. Your visitors will appreciate it too. Nothing pisses me off more than a dead link to info I need.
Which Directories to submit to
Google, Yahoo, Bing and Ask are the major 4 directories. Some would say this it is not necessary to submit to any at all as they will find your site eventually through incoming links. I recommend submitting to at least the four listed just to get your site crawled and ranked quicker. It will only take 15 minutes to submit your url.
Beware of the web companies that offer submission to thousands of directories. Apart from the four I mentioned earlier the true value of the remaining sites would probably not be worth the money you are paying for the auto submission.
Do you use frames or have dynamically generated pages
If you are using frames there is a chance not all of your site will be indexed. Please read this article by Danny Sullivan which is a recommended by Google for people building sites with frames. Make sure there is a NOFRAMES tag if you cant get Google to read them. More and more websites today are being developed in dynamic scripting languages (PHP, ASP, etc) but Google has stated they are limiting the amount of dynamic webpages they’re indexing. Try to have some static content in your pages, it will benefit you greatly.
Other sources of traffic to your site
Googles click pay per lead or adwords as they call it is a very affective way to get targeted traffic to your site. It does cost money though and depending on your niche costs will vary. I have found some traffic generation programs and services in the crowds of of companies offering traffic that have helped me generate some good sales. I have also been ripped off many, many times so beware! Look through traffic generation reviews before committing to anything.
About The Author: Jenny Sutton is a SEO teacher and web marketing author. Jenny has assisted in driving traffic to high profile multinational web sites and helped online businesses create strong income streams through traffic generation resulting in companies producing more than $250K or more in their first year. Visit http://www.eslumdogsystem.com
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