Showing up in the natural listings of the search engines is no easy feat. The search engines change the criteria that they use in their algorithms regularly. However there are a few accepted principles that the experts agree you need to do in order to have a chance of appearing in the natural search engine listings.
Submit Your Website to Google, Yahoo, MSN, and AOL. These are the biggest and most important search engines. They all have a section on their website where you can submit your website. You should submit to each of them, one at a time. Never use a service that says they will submit your website to hundreds of search engines. The search engines do not like when people auto submit and they will not index you if you do it. Don't waste your time with every little search engine, the ones mentioned above are the biggest and cover most of the Internet.
Try to get other websites that are relevant and that already appear in the search engines to link to your website. You can do this by offering to exchange links, or offering them something else of value such as a recommendation or testimonial on their website.
You should try to use the keywords people search on to find a website like yours, in the content of your website. It is important to strike a balance between having important keywords and still making sense to the reader.
Customize your meta tags. Meta tags are invisible tags, or code, embedded in your web page which are read by the search engine robots to learn more about the content of your website. The jury is out on how beneficial they actually are, (some say not at all) but it certainly does not hurt, and probably helps a lot, to follow the proper protocol in order to help your website get listed. The main meta tags you need to think about are language, author, title, description and keywords.
Even after you do all of the things above, there is no guarantee you will get listed on the first couple of pages of the search engines. Your chances of getting listed on the first page for certain keywords depends on many factors, such as how competitive your topic is, the quality and quantity of the links going to your website, how long your website has been live for and some factors that change all the time. You should at least show up under the title of your website though, which is important for most people.
There are ways to show up on the very first page of any search engine but you have to be willing to pay to do so. This method is known as "pay per click" or "sponsored listings".
Sponsored search is for serious Internet marketers only. It is for people who want to get more traffic and are willing to pay for it. You need to know that you will get a return on your investment or be on so few keywords that the small amount you will pay is acceptable to you.
Most search engines do allow you to pay to appear on a page next to the natural listings (usually the right side of the page in little ad boxes to get your message across to people browsing the Internet). These listings usually referred to as sponsored listings cost you money every time someone clicks on them to get to your website. The good news is that you only pay when they click and not just for the ad appearing. This is commonly referred to as "pay per click" (PPC) advertising.
There two major players in PPC and they are Google and Yahoo. We do not recommend that you waste your time with any smaller players. Google and Yahoo cover most of the Internet because in addition to their own sponsored listings they syndicate to many other websites and search engines.
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