Web Design & Local SEO for Small Businesses

Sitemaps

How to Tell Google About Your New Site?

In order to get your site to appear in the main search engines you need to tell them that the site is out there.

You could use www.google.com/addurl/?continue=/addurl after all you enter your url / web address enter the “prove you’re real” code, job done.  But then all you can do is sit and wait.  In my experience this is the slowest way to get your site listed on Google.

So how should I add my site to Google?

The quickest and most efficient way I’ve found of getting a site listed in Google is to follow these steps.

1) Make sure it’s ready -is your site is finished or at least presentable, for people to see. Google may find you quickly, but may take a few weeks for the spiders that crawl websites to get back to check.  So by having all your info, your keywords, your descriptions, the site all set for visitors, it means that if the do take a little while to get back they already have the right information.  Nothing worse that seeing your new site on Google with glaring spelling mistake for all to see.

2) Add your sitemap – Create and add a sitemap to Google and Bing Webmaster tools, this means when the spiders arrive at your site they’ll be able to find their way round and hopefully explore as much of the site as is possible as quickly as possible.

3) Get Links – Google’s little spiders search back through all it’s known sites, the more often a site is updated the more often it’s likely to be crawled.  So good places to get some early links would be active  forums and blogs.  Also if you got a web designer to create your site, they might add a link to your site (especially if good if they have good pr (page rank) on the page you’re listed on.

3) Social Bookmarking – Submit to bookmarking sites like Digg, Delicious, etc. there are lots out there. Bookmarking sites are a way of saving links of sites, blogs etc of interest, and sharing them with others, it’s way of showing you liked something on the web and you can then share it with friends and followers.  The more votes a link has, the more popular it was.   But even if you just add it once for the purpose of getting Google listed it all helps, and ideally in time you’ll get more votes.

4) Social Networking – Adding links on sites like Twitter and Facebook, will hopefully help direct traffic, but they also help to get the search engines attention.  These links should not be your only links though as they don’t appear to give much juice.

The bonus of getting listed using links rather than submitting it directly, is the links will also count in your SEO efforts for to get a better ranking.  Using the right combination you could get listed in just days, rather than weeks, be aware though that although you’re indexed on the search engine it will take time for your rank to emerge and settle, so keep going with the link building and reap the rewards when it does.

Do you use any other methods? want to share?

To see how Pippasweb could help your start up or small business, check us out.

Broken links and Sitemaps

During a quiet Sunday I was working through some background checks on my own website to make sure things were all running smoothly and I came across two useful sites.

The first is a Broken link checker, it checks both internal and external links to ensure all your links are to active pages.

So Why check bad links ?

Bad links are bad for users, they may take people away from your site totally and they may be left in link limbo.
If you go to a site and the links don’t go to where they’re supposed to, does this give you a good or bad impression of the care given to the site.
But the big one is search engines like Google crawl through sites using the links, and finding dead ends will count against your site.

How to check for broken links?

There are many different site that offer this service but I came across this one http://www.web-site-map.com.
I liked this one because
1) it worked through the full domain, no need to go page by page, which some of the ones I looked at today did.
2) It listed only the links that had a problem, some listed every link and I needed to scroll through to find any issues.

The second tool which is very useful from a search engine point of view is the site map. The site map of a site uses links to show the layout of the site, and then the spiders that crawl the sites for Google can crawl your site accordingly. They are particularly useful if you’ve got a new site, or added pages, or made changes to your sites structure.

1) go to http://www.xml-sitemaps.com
2) Enter your web site url.
3)Change frequency, how often do you update your site?, weekly monthly?, yearly? Or you can just leave this set to none.
4) Last modification, when was the last change made to the site. set the date .
5) Set the priority, The priority of a particular URL relative to other pages on the same site.
6) click start
7) Click on the link to download the file and save on your computer.
8) FTP the xml file onto the root file of your website.
9) log into Google webmaster tools > Site configuration > Sitemaps
10) Add the address where you uploaded the sitemap and submit.
11) To submit to Bing.com copy and paste url into address bar of your browser
http://www.bing.com/webmaster/ping.aspx?sitemap=www.YourWebAddress.com/sitemap.xml
12)Change “www.YourWebAddress.com” to your domain name
13)Press ENTER

So how did you spend your Sunday?

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