According to my understanding, good search engines have over one billion listings on file. Unfortunately, there are almost billions webpages on the Internet; therefore even the best search engines give only a sample of what is really out there. Search engines are doing their best to improve this condition and get as many correct, current active listings as possible; they are racing to be the first one to encompass the entire Internet. Each day search engines get better and have more listings; perhaps one day soon they will be able to represent every site on the Internet.
How Do Search Engines Work?
If you want to find a store near you that sells printer ink, you would go to a search engine, enter printer ink and press GO. You'll get 532,889 listings. Well, that's too many names, so you try it again, entering "printer ink" Lexmark Burbank. This time you'll get all listings in Burbank that feature Lexmark and printer ink, including those in Burbank, Illinois as well as in Burbank, California.
But what about all those places in Burbank that also sell printer ink but did not appear on the search engine list? Or what if they were listed at the bottom, and you made a choice from among the first 10 names? They just lost a sale.
So... how do you get listed on search engines, and how do you get your business located near the top of 500,000 other entries?
Do you pay for it?
There are many search engines, but only about ten carry the vast majority of searches. Those are the ones you want to be listed on for sure. In case you are still fuzzy about what a search engine is, here are a couple of the more popular engines you can check out.
How Do Search Engines Get Their Directories?
Search engines populate their directories in two ways:
If you put up a new webpage, the search engines should find and include it in about six weeks and you don't have to do anything more about it.
If you submit a request and pay a fee to the search engine to include your webpage, they will put you in their directory in about six weeks, and you don't have to do anything more about it.
What's the purpose of the fee? I suspect it's because they have to hire people to take orders and do the paper work for what is already being done automatically by their own programs.
How Do You Get Near the Top of the Listing?
Don't you wish we could give you the magic formula here? Everybody wants to be listed near the top of a search engine listing. That is the place where most of the business is done. In a listing of 500,000 names, if ten percent (50,000) of the people including you did what it takes to get their webpage listed near the top, your page would still be too far down. I don't know of a magic formula to get your page near the top, but there are some things you and I can do to help you get a better position on the list.
One way search engines build their directories is by following links from webpage to webpage. If other webpages don't link to your page it may take search engines longer to find you and get you entered into their directory (the "six-week" syndrome).
Furthermore, the more webpages that link to yours, the higher consideration will be given your webpage in the listing order. Therefore, exchange links. Contact people whose webpages are compatible with yours. Add a link on your page to their page and ask them to put a link on their page to yours. He who has the most links, wins.
We at Dimen, Inc. put a link on our business webpage to all our client's homepages.
It is absolutely essential to use proper keywords in the header section of your web page (this section is not displayed on the Internet). Search engines read the keywords and that is how they list your web page, in addition to what is written in the text of the displayed portion of your webpage. Some people who do their own web pages don't realize the importance of using keywords, and so they don't.
Use keywords of everything that applies to you, and also of your competitors, and also of your opposites.
For example, suppose you are Alice Apple who owns AA's Poodle Clipping Service in Tujunga, Califoria and your webpage is www.aapcs.com. Your key words would include this list:
A search of any one of those words would include your webpage on the search engine's list. Furthermore, the more hits you get, the higher your page is in the listing.
If somebody searched for keywords "pet grooming", tujunga, poodle, haircut, you would be nearer the top of the list. If they searched for "pet grooming," you would be anywhere at all on a list of thousands of people, (except that many links to your page may put you higher up on the list).
There now, isn't that more than everything you wanted to know about Search Engines?
Dimen Website Design