- Ranking well takes time – generally 2 to 5 months from the time work is begun.
- No one can promise a #1 ranking unless they’re going to bid for a sponsored link (your money) until you’re #1.
- Reciprocal links have not been very useful the last ten years. Paid links have never been. Of course, that doesn’t include sites you advertise on. But there’s a difference between advertising and paying to have a link to your site.
- Staying in the top 5 takes work. You may get there, but that doesn’t mean you will stay there.
- A single web page cannot rank well for hundreds of words or phrases.
- If people know your company name, your site should be found easily without paying anyone to do anything.
- Ranking and keyword reports are interesting, cost next to nothing to produce and do nothing to improve your ranking. Don’t pay for something that doesn’t has a remote chance of improving sales.
- How a search engine ranks sites is its trade secret.
- There is no reason to resubmit your website to search engines every month unless your site changes every few weeks and, even then, it’s probably unnecessary.
ABOUT SEARCH ENGINE RANKING
All search engines are not created equally. You probably have a favorite, because it gives you good results or is easy to use — or both. I prefer DuckDuckGo right now because it doesn’t track you.
Some search engines aren’t even search engines; they’re directories or catalogs of websites. But the difference is subtle and not important to the average person.
The difference in results is due to how the search engine reads, classifies, and ranks various elements of each website they visit.
Some search engines (and directories) count the readable words on a page to determine what that page is about. If the word “cooking” shows up more than any other word on that page, the search engine will likely assume the page is about cooking.
Other search engines may read the “meta” tags which are hidden code. There is –or should be — a meta Title tag and a meta Description tag on every page. The meta (hidden) Title tag is what shows up when you search for something.
The meta Keywords tag is not used by directories or search engines anymore, so spend more than 30 seconds on it.
The list goes on. Our job, when we design a website or when we maintain an existing website, is to know what’s in that list. We spend a lot of time and money staying educated to the ins and outs of search engines.
For example, you may not realize that when you look at the text on some websites, it isn’t really machine-readable text, it’s an image.
No search engine can “read” images although they can read the “alt” text of an image. That’s the text that shows up when you hold your mouse over an image for a second.
Having text in image format is essential for certain effects, such as using a font that isn’t universal. But an entire page of image text will render it nearly invisible to most search engines. So a search engine-savvy web designer will take that into consideration when designing a website.
Google is still the most popular search engine, but Bing and Yahoo! have their followers.
All search engines have “spiders” or “robots” that “crawl” the web, going from site to site, seeing what’s there.
Once you do get listed, your work (or ours) isn’t over. New websites are added to the Internet daily and some will be in competition with yours. So, just because you’re #3 in search results today doesn’t mean you’ll stay #3.
Keeping or improving a website’s ranking in search results is often as much work as getting there in the first place.
If you’d rather we worry about this stuff because you have been lost since paragraph two, let us know. We offer monthly retainer plans that can be used to work on search engine ranking, as well as a tailored submission program for new and existing websites. Plans start at $500/month.