Visibility

A Resource for Search Engine Marketing

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Road Map for Internet Marketing: from the beginning

April 4th, 2008 · No Comments

Most businesses have had websites for years now without any consideration for search engine marketing. We have all been through the stage of putting up a website, adding the web address to all of our printed material. We may have had the site rebuilt by a professional designer.

Search engine marketing seems to be everywhere we turn. The newspapers and trade journals publish frequent stories on the subject. Solicitations by marketing firms offering to make your site #1 in Google prompt us to consider what we are missing. The arguments they make sound reasonable, “being visible in search engines”, has to be a plus. The question is how much is it worth and how do you go about getting there?

The first step in your journey is to lay out a roadmap, with waypoints along the way. Here we plan a 12-step program where you take advantage of the possible benefits of SEM (search engine marketing) for your business. Each leg along the way has a cost commensurate with the benefit. Many steps have little or no, out of pocket expense and others may involve a substantial investment.

Answer these questions: Out of pocket $0.00

Will my business benefit if potential customers become aware of my company’s products? Can my business benefit if my existing customers become aware of a new price or process I am offering? I expect the answer is a resounding yes or you would not be reading this page.

Search engines are in business to make money, delivering the best information they can find to those who use them. The more relevant the results they deliver the more satisfied their customers. Just like hit TV shows, the advertising revenue is greater.

Step#1 in our process is to determine where we are in Search Marketing terms: Out of pocket $0.00

Unbelievably, just putting your website “on the internet” by hosting it with an ISP (internet service provider) does not mean that your pages can be found by a search engine. Each search engine builds an index of the pages it finds while crawling the internet. I do not know why we still call it crawling when it’s so fast that billions of pages are included in these indexes. The search engine employs automated software called “bots” to find and index pages by the content it “reads” from each page.

Search engines provide tools you can use to check how your site is doing in their
index. When you search for “large format printing”, you get instant results. The search engine ran your query against its index. If your page on large format printing is not in their index it cannot not be in the results.

Open your favorite web browser Internet Explore for example and goto: www.google.com

In the search box type; site: followed by www.yourdomain.com
This is a command for Google to list all the pages it has indexed from a domain.

site command google

Each page in the index is listed with the title of the page followed by a description.
The web page designer coded this text into the page. If the designer encoded no description, Google will grab whatever text it finds and display it as a description. Any time a page from your site appears in the search results this is how its’ presented.

This command will work for the other search engines like Yahoo, and MSN.
Review

If your site has been published for more than a few weeks you can expect to see results. A link to your site from any other page that Google has indexed will lead them to schedule a visit to your site. If no pages are listed, you will have to make the search engines aware of your site. This will be accomplished is a later step.

Print your results and add it to your website review folder.

The next step: What does the Search Engine see on your pages?

Tags: RoadMap SEM · Search Marketing