OK, so you've made a great site, you've uploaded it to the web, and you are now ready to unveil it to the world. Surprisingly enough, this is the step that makes or breaks your site, yet most people do not spend an adequate amount of time on this step.
Many commercial sites with paid webmasters spend a significant amount of time each week promoting their sites. It isn't unreasonable for them to spend 8-12 hours a month on the task. Of course, these people are trying to be top in the list for common search words like "market","ecommerce" and "news."
The best approach for the average webmaster is to aim to get your site to come up in the top 10 list of most major search engines if the search words show an interest in your type of site, in your geographical area or niche market. This approach treats the search engines more like phone book yellow pages than billboards; If someone is looking for your site or your niche, they will find you.
Submitting your site is a lengthy project. To do it correctly, plan on spending six or more hours at it. The steps we suggest are:
- Learn about search engines and how they work:
Visit Search Engine Watch, and read the "Search Engine Submission Tips" section.
- Learn about Meta tags, and how to make them work for you:
Visit Self Promote.com and read "Preparing your pages for the search engines."
- Craft your Meta Tags and Title, and submit:
You should now be armed with enough knowledge to adequately submit your site. Self Promote.com, where you read the article "Preparing your pages for the search engines." is a good site to promote your site from, as it automates quite of the bit of the process, but do also promote to the human-indexed search engines such as Yahoo.
- Promote your site to local portal pages
Now that you have posted to many global search engines, it's time to get local. There are many local sites in Western North Carolina that have free listings for local business and non-profits. Take some time finding these sites, and submitting your site. This can not be automated in any way, but you will also get to learn the local web color of WNC while you are searching and submitting. We suggest starting with the MAIN site, in our Community Link or Business link sections.
- Repeat this process at least every 6 months.
Slowly, your ranking will drop in most of the search engines, so you'll want to resubmit your site to "refresh" your rankings.