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Thread: Getting your business found on the internet

  1. #1
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Getting your business found on the internet

    Have you ever made a purchase over the internet? Or used the internet to do research before making a buying decision? Think for a moment exactly how you went about it. Chances are you are not the only person who goes through the same process and experience.

    One of the big buzzwords on the internet is SEO (Search engine optimization). This is because using a search engine such as Google is probably the most used tool for research on the internet before making a buying decision.

    Conventional thinking is that you need to optimise your business website to perform well on search. The basic idea is if someone does a search for a particular widget or service you are selling you need to get your website listed in the top 5-10 results. This thinking is being driven particularly by hordes of enterprises on the internet who are trying to sell their SEO services to businesses.

    It can cost a lot of money in SEO services to get your business website into that top 5, but my main point here is that the way a heck of a lot of these SEO services go about it is not going to produce the results you want - which is sales!

    Think about that for a moment. Just because you get your page into the top 5 (or 10, or 20) doesn't mean you are going to get a sale. This is because successful marketing is more than just being found - it is also about creating credibility.

    My experience is I have never yet bought from a company website that came up in the top 10 search results - and I don't think it is an accident. It has something to do with how search engines calculate what is important. What I have bought from is often a company or website that was just a link or two away from that search result.

    Don't get me wrong - if someone does a search for your brand name, you want your website to be in the top results. If that isn't happening, you need help. But when it comes to the service or product you supply, pages with information about the service or product, not where to buy it tend to win the day with the search engines.

    Exactly why this is and how search engines achieve this is probably quite a long topic on its own. But to cut what could be a rather long article short, I suggest you do yourself a favour right now - Do a Google search on your service or product and look at the results. More important than the actual websites that come up, look at the type of websites that come up.

    Are they company websites or mostly something else?

    Once the answer to that question is clear, we can start talking about what to do about it.

  2. #2
    Full Member derrickm's Avatar
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    I find it interesting that SEO companies still offer the service of submitting your website to XXXX search engines, even though there are only three which really count - Google, Yahoo and MSN.

    Derrick Markotter

  3. #3
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    The others find you anyway - at least eventually
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  4. #4
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    Search Engine Optimisation

    Hi Dave,

    I tend to agree with your buying scenario. I have been actively researching this subject for the past 8 months and the abridged version is that the major search engines allocate merit according to the number of popular websites that mention a particular site that fits your search term.Coupled with this is the websites that have the most relevant content or articles pertaining to a specific topic.

    There are many black hat theories, but traditionally blogs and forum have loads of relevant content that is current and is refered to in other posts. That is why I managed to find this forum. It has great worthwhile and interesting content for South Africa and to emphasize your statement regarding the first page, I was looking for property related content and found this forum on page 3 for my search term, with the first 2 pages being overseas based due to their dot com addresses and as we know their economy discussions were not at all helpful for my purposes.

    Kind regards

  5. #5
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    This list is not mine - but has lots of good ideas. The guy that wrote it says "I was inspired to write this by superflytrainer who posted an excellent 101 ways to get more traffic thread on DP. Alot of the tips have been posted on various forums and blogs, so I make no claim that they are all my own. I have simply tried to collate them into a list and expand where possible. Feel free to plagirise this list to your own ends, but please link back to (I'm no) Search Engine Optimisation Expert if you do."

    so here goes...

    If you're launching a new site, or new content, write an introduction and submit it to share sites like Digg, Reddit and Now Public.
    Create a Yahoo Group in the niche your site sits.

    Create a MySpace account and use it to publisise your site.

    Bookmark your site on and if you're really keen, add a button to your homepage.

    Create a Technorati account and "claim" your blog.

    Submit your site to free, search engine friendly directories. An excellent list can be found here.

    Conduct a survey. This is an excellent way to generate offline publicity.

    Place a free ad for your company on Gumtree.

    Syndicate your site's content by using an RSS feeds.

    Submit your RSS feeds to agregator sites like FeedBurner, Squidoo, Feedboy, Jordomedia, FeedBomb, FeedCat, rssmad, feeddirectory and feedfury. Stolen from DigitalPoint

    Write an article related to your site and submit it to article sites.

    Sign up to StumbleUpon and get your friends to Stumble your site.

    Create a custom 404 page so that even if someone encounters an error on your site, they are re-directed somewhere nice.

    Set up a 301 redirect to take traffic from your non-www address to your www address. See here for more info.

    Add a link to your site in the signature of any forums you post on.

    Tell your friends about your site. It's free advertising init.

    Speel cheek ur stie. Nothing appears more amateur than a site with typos or spelling mistakes.

    Test your site and make sure it appears correctly in all major browsers.

    Buy enough hosting. No one likes a slow site.

    Don't worry about PageRank - worrying about PageRank is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubblegum.*

    Offer something for free. Free is good. People tell their friends about free stuff.

    Tell your neighbours, you never know what contacts they might have.

    Offer your users as many ways as possible to contact you. MSN, Skype, Yahoo etc all complement email, phone and a real address.

    Advertise your site on Craigslist. It's free, relevant and localised.

    Do NOT use frames.

    Submit your site to It may take time, but it's worth it.

    Create an XML sitemap of your site and submit it to Google.

    Get a custom t-shirt made with your website url on it, and wear it often.

    Ask a large breasted lady to wear one too.

    Sign up with an affiliate programme to sell your product, or if you're a publish, make some cash!

    On your Contact Page ask people if they mind receiving your newsletter.

    Send out a newsletter!

    Go to a free seminar for Website owners. You might learn something.

    Find quality and relevant blogs and leave a comment (with a link back to your site of course).

    Don't pay people to submit your site to search engines. It's a waste of money.

    YouTube and Google Video are excellent portals on which to launch a viral campaign.

    Giving away an eBook is an excellent way to generate word-of-mouth about your site.

    Sponsor a Wordpress theme or a phpListDirectory template.

    If you sell products that are advertised on television by the manufacturer, add "As Seen on TV" to your site!

    Avoid proprietry technologies like Java and Active X.

    Put downloadable content on your site, but make sure it's not manufacturer specific - so mp3 rather than wma.

    Learn about CSS. It's the new HTML.

    Contribute to related subject areas on Wikipedia.
    Ask bloggers and other Web site owners to review your site and/or products.

    Have user friendly page names - most tools comes with some way to avoid

    If you must have a Flash homepage, make sure you have a "Skip Intro" link.

    Tell your local rag about your site. These newspapers are desparate for stories and you may well even get a pic of your ugly picture published.

    Become a leading authority on your chosen subject.

    Donate money to a charity and most will place a link on their site back to you.

    Abide to W3C standards - it will help your site in the long term.

    Your local community sports teams offer cheap, but highly effective sponsorship opportunities.

    Publisise your site on related forums - but don't spam!

    Ask bloggers to write about your site or product - in return for a link of course.

    Offer a competition related to something in the news - so football around the time of the World Cup etc.

    Add a "Tell a Friend" function to your site, so people can easily recommend you to their mates.

    Have a Sitemap on your site to allow users to navigate around quickly and to aid the search engines.

    Have a nice keyword rich title at the top of each of your pages. Users and search engines both like descriptive titles.

    Include a Feedburner button on your site so people can easily subscribe to your feed.

    If you use PPC then create a landing page for each of your AdWords - it'll boost your conversations no end.

    Appear on Dragon's Den.

    Create a Press section on your site where can you store all your press releases, logos and banners.

    Add a link to your site from within your eBay profile.

    Ask your friends to give you honest feedback on your site.

    The best way to find someone to do any kind of work on your site is through personal recommendation.

    Gain exposure by submitting photos and pictures to Flikr.

    Share your banners on banner exchange sites.

    Make sure it's easy for your users to subscribe to your RSS feed.

    Create a "lense" for your site on Squidoo

    Ask friends, collegues and associates to "Favourite" your blog on Technorati.

    You can add a Bulletin to your MySpace account promoting your site that all your MySpace Friends will see.

    Response to your customer's emails promptly, even if it is with a simply auto-responder. No one likes to wait 3 or 4 days for an acknowledgement of their contact with you.

    Get a professional Copywriter to give your site a once over. If you are on a tight budget, limit to the just the homepage.

    Make a list, "Top 10"s work well. Update it regularly to give your visitors a reason to return.

    What did you learn today? Tell other people and they might learn something too.

    Do you have really hot content on your site that geeks would love? If so Slashdot will bring you a mass of traffic.

    Deep link directories are an excellent way to promote inner pages of your site.

    Meta tags might carry less weight than previously, but you should still have them on every page.

    Ask your Gran for feedback on your site. Never ignore the silver surfers.

    Include a "Add to your Technorati favourites" button on your site.

    Google Analytics is free and will tell you all you need to know about who's visiting your site.

    Search engines will find you. Don't pay money for your site to be "submitted".

    Don't be afraid to link to other sites, especially if they are relevant and to highly respected sites.

    Keep It Simple Stupid: use CSS to control layout, style and colours and use HTML text rather than graphics to represent text.

    Validate your HTML and CSS. It'll help ensure your site displays well in all browsers.

    Small pages sizes and optimised graphics will give your site a snappy feel and won't require users to wait around for it to load.

    If you plan to submit your site to lots of directory or article sites - create an email especially for this. Delete it when you're finished to avoid spam.

    "Link baiting" means writing some killer content that people will want to link to. Like a "101 Tips to Improve Your Web Presence" list!

    If your chosen field is technology related then write a "whitepaper". That's a posh name for an article.

    Google receives roughly 50% of all search requests, Yahoo 25% and MSN just 10%. That's a good rule of thumb as to how much emphisis to put on each.

    Make sure you have a robots.txt file in the root of your Web site. You can use this to control search engines, but if nothing else it'll reduce the number of 404 errors in your Weblogs.

    Free online games, a forum or chatrooms will give your users a reason to come back to your site.

    Ebooks with re-seller rights make an excellent "free gift" for your site.

    Upload your product feed to Froogle. It's FREE!

    This is an excellent list of Top 25 Social Bookmarking Sites

    Search out unanswered questions on Yahoo! Answers and add your site as the "Source".

    PageRank is vanity, ranking is sanity.

    Yahoo are catching up with Google with an excellent set of webmaster tools called Site Explorer.

    Don't buy traffic. It's un-targetted and won't convert.

    Pay Per Click advertising gets you fast results - and if it's handled well can be very profitable.

    Upload a favicon.gif file so that your users have a nice icon when they bookmark your site.

    And that's it!

    Not sure if I should link back - it's from another frum and sure Dave (if need be) can link it in two ticks!

  6. Thanks given for this post:

    RogerH (01-Feb-10)

  7. #6
    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Wasn't this originally on DigitalPoint? Or maybe that wasn't original either.

    I know I've seen it before. Plenty of good points, with some even subtly repeated for emphasis

    And to some extent it backs up what I'm about to suggest - pages with links to a number of relevant sites on a particular subject do very well on search engine result pages (SERPs). If you take a typical business website, you might publish a page with lots of info on a particular subject, but because it's your business website, you can't exactly link to your competitors.

    My thought is this becomes a handicap when it comes to search. The answer is to have that info on community sites. Yes, other competitors might get their link in too, but if you link to your site in the original article, who has the best credibility when it comes to the reader's choice?

    Search engines like all those outgoing links because you will probably get to what you are really looking for within a couple more clicks - to them it's a way of covering more bases.

    And here's a thought - to some extent your competitors' links are helping promote the page! It makes it more relevant and likely to satisfy.

  8. Thanks given for this post:

    RogerH (01-Feb-10)

  9. #7
    Diamond Member tec0's Avatar
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    If I may, what is the first thing you want to know? The product or service right... Well what is the second thing you want to know? Price and availability! Base on that I can promise you now websites that has detailed information on the product and is able to give a price at the same time gets more attention.

    Bing under the top 20 helps but really I have found that a lot of web-pages are just info and you have to phone for a price or e-mail someone. I don’t like that at all.

    I want info I want price and I want availability and most important I want that info as in now... So if your website doesn’t have these elements than chances are you will be ignored!
    peace is a state of mind
    Disclaimer: everything written by me can be considered as fictional.

  10. Thanks given for this post:

    RogerH (01-Feb-10)

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