by Bob Nunn
Last month we covered how to insert META tags in your pages. If you missed my article, go to: http://www.webpromote.com/tools/metatag.asp to learn about setting up META tags. This month well look at getting your pages listed.
Tip #1 - Dont Be A Fish!
This is a common sucker spam message and they are looking for you!Your customers can't find you! We GUARANTEE you a TOP TEN listing on all the major search engines...
Send your check to...
These listing sites offer to list your site on 300 search engines for $XXX price and some even offer this service monthly. Ask them to send a list of the search engines they will be listing your site with. Ask them to supply 6 web sites they are in the process of listing or re-listing, so you can do a before and after check to see their results.
I put most of these guys up there with the lifetime guaranteed light bulb salesman of a few years ago. My overpriced bulbs burned out, but I cant find them to get my replacements. For the most part, they use a program to auto-submit your site. You can buy your own program, by the way, for about $100. Assuming you have good tags already, if they offer the service at a fair price, you might talk with them.
The only way a service can do this correctly is to have access to your web pages to properly install and update the META tags. If you really trust these guys to edit your web site, then more power to you.
Tip #2 - Getting The Most With The Least...
In my experience, most of the traffic on the Internet comes from about 10 different search engines. On http://headgap.com/addurl/ I have listed 12 of the top search engines and linked each directly to its add URL page. Number one should be Yahoo, which should always be listed by hand.
Yahoo is a human indexed site. That means that each entry is looked at and added by hand. They dont look at your tags. You can write whatever you want in the description field but they will likely shorten it. You should read through Yahoos submission policies and search the site for categories you could be listed in. Pick the most important one to your interests and make that your primary category. Select others as secondary categories and write those paths down on paper (Home>Health>Fitness>Aerobics). Youll use these in the submission process. Go to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/suggest/ and read through their guidelines before submitting. List with Yahoo first and spend the most time on it. They also offer a premium service for a fee; I recommend this if you have the budget.
Tip #3 - The Sleeper Tip! The Open Directory Project
The sleeper tip is DMOZ. (http://www.dmoz.org) "The Open Directory Project's goal is to produce the most comprehensive directory of the web, by relying on a vast army of volunteer editors." This is a direct quote from their About page. Many of the top search engines use the material these guys produce! For example: All the Web - AltaVista - Amazon - AOL Search - Deja - Direct Hit - Dogpile - EuroFerret - EuroSeek - Excite - Google - GoTo - HotBot - Infind - Infoseek - Lycos - MetaCrawler - Netscape - Northern Light - WebCrawler - and Yahoo.
When I ran across these guys I realized that if I could get my listings in the right places, that they would naturally propagate across the best search engines! Spend time getting your listing in the appropriate categories. If you have the time you might even volunteer to be an editor. What better way to make sure your listings are up to par!
Run through and list up with the rest of the links on http://headgap.com/addurl/. Make sure you keep a text file with your META tags nearby as you will have to fill in some keywords and description entry boxes. I also keep basic information already keyed into this file, like my email address, name and address, etc. so I can cut and paste into the appropriate areas.
Tip #4 - Get Good At This
Repeat the procedure on a regular basis with the exception of the human indexed sites. The robot cataloged search sites seem to require refreshing. Do a search periodically for your domain name less the .com or .net and see if you come up. If not re-submit. I check All-The Web regularly! (http://alltheweb.com) It quickly gives you a count of how many times your site came up. Try typing headgap (headgap.com is my personal domain) in it and see what you get. This search engine is a good indicator on how effective you have been in listing your site.
You of course will want to search the way your customers are searching for you. A good web reporting program like Web Trends or even an old freebie like Analog can let you know how, when and where your search engine traffic is coming from. If you arent running your own web server, ask your ISP if they have reporting capabilities for your web site. You may want to rework your META tags to help improve your standings.
Remember Last Months Tip:
Search Lycos, Hotbot or any of the non-human indexed sites, take the top entries, view their source code and use the tags that apply to your site. Dont forget to add any commonly misspelled versions of your keywords.
Next time we will address other ways to promote your site.
Bob Nunn is owner, Operator Headgap Systems, http://headgap.com, http://tfbbs.com
Board Member, AppleCore of Memphis, Inc., http://headgap.com/applecore.spml