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How to get on the search engines

Posted on 2004-08-17
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Last Modified: 2010-04-27
I built a website, and I want to know how the correct way to get it recognized by the search engines. My understanding was there "was" or "is" crawlers that used to search for meta-tags. But then I read that the search engines do not do that any more and meta-tags are of no use.

I've gone to google and typed in my website name, and I used to get only two entries...none of them to my webiste... just to some guy in yugolsavia, who lists all registered domain names...lol...

But now I type in the name and a gazzillion answers come up, and none of them my website...

So, please explain if meta-tags are still useful and how I get on the search engines, without paying some third party person a bunch of bucks  to register me for their profit...
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Question by:Phoenix2582
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by:duz
duz earned 25 total points
ID: 11824945
Phoenix2582 -

Search engines still crawl but tend to ignore anything that is easy to abuse like meta tags. I suggest you read through this tutorial http://www.seo-guy.com/tutorial.html which although not 100% accurate is much more accurate than most. As you put into practise what is contained in the tutorial if you have any questions please come back and ask them here...

- duz
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humeniuk earned 175 total points
ID: 11831950
A comprehensive answer to that question would fill pages upon pages in websites, books, tutorials, etc. in fact it already does.  You want to find good resources like the one duz presented and do a lot of reading (another good one is  www.highrankings.com).  Use the knowledge you gain there and monitor the results.  Keep what works and adjust the things that don't work and you'll start to get a feel for it.

The most important thing to remember is to forget about using any tricks, because they generally work against you.  The best way to get SE recognition is to create a quality website, because that is consistent with the objectives of any search engine, to deliver quality websites to their users.  There are lots of people who look for ways around that, but the SEs are constantly refining their methods to focus on that primary objective and they're starting to get pretty good at it.

So what is a quality website?  Content is king -  you have to provide lots of useful, original content.  From a design perspective, it has to be clear and uncluttered (both visually and in terms of your coding) so that it is easily accessable and navigable by users (and SE crawlers).  For a basic one-page overview of some of the elements related to the design aspect, see http://earthskater.com/library/seo.asp.

What else helps?  Keywords and links.  The best way to think of keywords is as words that someone looking for the kinds of services you offer would type into a search engine to find those services.  You want to put some serious thought into which keywords best represent your website and then use them in your Page Title tag, your Heading tags, your Alt tags, etc. as outlined in the earthskater link above.  You also want to use them in your website content (very important).  Try to use the 'early and often', but never at the expense of compromising the relevance and clarity of your content.

Most search engines use the number and quality of links to your site as an indication of the relevance and importance of your site.  How do you get links?  First and foremost, you build a quality site with relevant content as above.  If you create a valuable information resource, people will link to you.  You can also exchange links with other websites.  However, make sure they are also quality websites with content that is related to yours.  A link from a poor site won't benefit you at all and remember to avoid Link Farms AT ALL COSTS.  Not only will you not benefit from their link to you, SEs will penalize you for linking to them.  The best place to start is to get your website listed in the appropriate directory at the Open Directory Project (www.dmoz.org).  This ensures that your site will be crawled by Google and numerous other SEs and legit directories.

Again, please note that this is a VERY basic starting point.  You still have to do your reading and commit to the ongoing process outlined above.
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