How do search engines find websites, anyway?
There are two major ways search engines find the content contained within your website. The first way involves submitting a site map (effectively the “treasure map” of your site showing the search engine spiders exactly where they can find what content) directly to the search engine, which the search engine then adds to its database. Once your site map is in the database for a search engine, the search engine is able to call upon the database when they receive a query, and your site will display in the search results based on how closely that search engine finds you to match the given query.
The second way search engines find websites is by sending out spiders. The spiders weave their way through the content of your website, gatering information about the content, images and links, creating a detailed map of what they have found. The information gathered by the spider is then added to the search engine’s database, where it waits to be called upon by user queries.
Will you guarantee my site is #1 in Google?
No, there is no way to possibly guarantee this. First, Google is constantly tweaking their search algorithms and formulas used to determine organic search placement and page rank. Second, SEO is always an ongoing process, not an overnight fix. There are a lot of SEO companies out on the web that make big promises, but I would advise you to be wary of any company that is promising results like #1 organic rankings or appearing for a particular keyword; they may be using black hat techniques to achieve these results, which will end up hurting you in the long run. Improving a website’s search engine ranking is a multifactorial issue, and requires a detailed SEO analysis of your site.
All of the websites we build include basic SEO optimization, and we offer individual SEO services for existing sites wanting to improve their rankings. SEO should be considered an ongoing process that requires monthly attention to site content, updating and tracking user searches.
Why don’t I see my site you just created in Google?
The web is always improving, but it is still not quick enough to index each page as it is posted to the internet. Sometimes, it can take time for Google (and other search engines like Yahoo and Bing) to index your site. In an effort to expedite this process we submit your completed site map to the major search engines as soon as your site is completed, but a certain amount of patience is still necessary to wait for your site to appear in searches.
I want more traffic! How do I get more visitors to come to my site?
Build it and they will come is not always true on the web. There are hundreds and thousands of new websites being published to the web everyday, so you have to think outside the box to make yourself shine. Effective marketing is a key part in driving traffic to your site. Run specials for new customers, plaster your neighborhood with promotional material, start a Facebook fan page – do what it takes to get your name out there.
I read that Meta tags are all I need for SEO. Do you include these in the sites you build?
WordPress handles in the inclusion of Meta tags very well in the particular framework setup we use for our sites, so rest assured. Meta tags will be included with your site. However, while Meta tags can help the search engine ranking of your page, they are not the only component in building an SEO-optimized website. Having well-written copy throughout your site plays a greater roll then Meta tags with regard to search engine ranking.
I paid for SEO services, but I am not seeing results, what is going on?
Patience is a virtue, and this is especially true when dealing with the web. It can take anywhere from a week to a few months to see real, search engine level changes due to any SEO work done. Oftentimes, the lag in re-ranking depends on how much that individual website updates its index, and how popular the search term you are trying to rank for is.
Google found my site, but I rank very low for my chosen keywords. What can I do?
This, again, is a multifactorial issue that will depend on your particular website. What I can tell you is that search engines are constantly changing their rules for ranking, so you have two choices – either you can hang in there and see if you rise in the rankings over time, or you can be proactive and have someone examine the SEO optimization on your website. If you are ranking low it could be due to structural issues on your site such as images with text instead of actual text, lots of flash animation, improper tags, etc. Another cause for low ranking is a lack of meaningful content and/or copy that is not search engine friendly. If you do not have anyone linking to you, this could also be an issue; search engines tend to favor websites that are viewed as “an authority” on a given subject. There is a whole host of other issues that could be causing you to rank low, but the best way to find out is to have a professional assess the situation.
An umbrella solution for anyone dealing with low rankings is to concentrate on a niche market. The web is becoming more and more saturated with sites, so in order to stand out you need to be the leader in your given area of expertise.