Fine Line Design
OK. So now you have your own web site being hosted on one of Fine Line Design’s servers, right? But how are other people going to find your site on the Internet? Search engines! That is how! If you have ever tried to find something on the Internet yourself, you have probably used one of the major search engines such as Yahoo!, AltaVista, WebCrawler, Google, Excite, Infoseek, HotBot, or Lycos.
Fine Line Design is going to help you submit entries not only to the major search engines, but to over 400 others as well! The most important step in making your site visible is selecting your keywords. These are terms that the search engines use to match against users’ queries. The keywords must be both commonly used and relevant to your site.
What does relevance mean? If your website is about "Glass Beads" and your site comes up first in a search for "Mutual Funds", you may get some hits. But they won't do you much good since people looking for mutual funds aren't necessarily interested in glass beads. Most likely, you run a website that is geared toward a specific audience or interest group. You want to draw people who are interested in what your site has to offer. Proper keyword selection can help draw interested parties to your website.
On the other hand, if you simply want visits and don't care what your viewers' interests are (for example, if you are selling ad impressions on your site), then it doesn't matter so much. In this case you want to simply use some of the most searched-for terms.
If you are trying to attract relevant hits, then you need to be careful in selecting your keywords. If you are trying to sell something, you are much more likely to make a sale if the person seeing your site is already interested in what you have to sell. For example, consider a site about geology. The website owner could repeat the word "geology" 20 times as a keyword. While this may bring hits from people seeking the word "geology", it misses many other users who might also benefit from seeing the site. How can you draw these other users?
Use Synonyms and Related Terms
In addition to "geology", useful keywords might be "rock", "geologist", "geological survey", "geological fault", etc. One of the best things to do is look up your chosen keywords in a thesaurus, and then include all the variations listed.
Be sure to include both the singular and plural version of your keywords. A person seeking "geologist" might also type the query "geologists". You want him to find your site either way.
Repeat Your Keywords - But Don't Repeat Excessively
Many search engines will rank your site higher if it contains multiple instances of a word that is searched for. Therefore, in theory, you could repeat each keyword 100 times to gain a corresponding increase in priority. However, most search engines are now penalizing (either by giving a lower ranking or rejecting altogether) sites that repeat the keywords too many times. We have found that 2-3 repetitions of each keyword will be accepted by most search engines.
Use Varying Forms of Punctuation
If your keyword can be punctuated in different ways, include them all. For example, if your site is about NASA, you would want to include "NASA", "N.A.S.A.", and "National Aeronautic and Space Administration", as well as "nasa", "n.a.s.a." and "national aeronautic and space administration".
In a recent study conducted by one of the major search engines, it was revealed that over 65% of all searches made use phrases rather than single words.
Web Site Title
This is the descriptive title that will appear after your URL in most search engine listings. A common mistake is to simply place a company or program's name in this field, generally creating repetitive title's in the ultimate listing. For instance, if your company name is ACME Widgets, and your URL is 'www.acmewidgets.com' your listing would end up looking like this: www.acmewidgets.com - ACME Widgets, … When you consider that the average listing on a displayed search is often 25 words or less, you will see how critical it is to catch the would be consumer's eye fast. A better use of the Title function for the website in this case would be: www.acmewidgets.com - The World's Largest Source of Widgets. The next consideration in determining a title is, obviously, IMPACT. Remember that your listing will be one of hundreds, or even thousands of competitors and related subjects. Studies have shown that while little tricks like all capitalization, graphic inserts, etc., will draw a consumer's eye, consumers are still most likely to follow the link which makes it's point quickly and succinctly.