Thursday, 25 January 2007

Indexing with Google

I am registered with Google and have signed up for 'Webmaster Tools' (this is all free!) here you can manage your site and submit new sites for indexing. You can also manage site maps and see how Google has rated your pages etc.. It's a good starting point, but you can get more if you also register for Google Analytics as well - here you can see where your visitors are geographically located and check visitor and page view stats. All free and well worth a look!
Now, the important thing is that you should submit your site - even if it is a blog - even if it is a google-related blog (like this one) so that google indexes your site and can drive visitors to you. I mistakenly thought that maybe as I was using 'blogger', had a google account and was registered for Adsense...that I wouldn't need to submit my blog...wrong! If you want to know whether your page is indexed by google, use the page-rank buton on google toolbar or enter: 'cache:http://YOUR DOMAIN' into your browser address bar, if it comes up with 'your search did not match any documents', then you should get the site submitted.
So how to do it?
Google will want to verify that you actually 'own' the site or blog. You can do this by adding a specific page to your site (html) you can't do this if you have a single-page blog, so the other method is to insert some html into the 'HEAD' section of your blog HTML template. Get your code from the google webmaster site and for 'Blogger' users go to the 'dashboard'/layout, edit HTML and insert the code as supplied after the 'HEAD' statement.
I tried this today, and Google has verified the page, in a couple of weeks (?) I hope to have the page indexed. I found a site the other day which will submit your site to a whole load of serach engines in one go - '' - I have added a link in the form of a submission-box in the right-hand side of this page for your convenience... (sadly I don't get commission, but they did me a service, so am happy to provide the link). It looks like you can use this service for blogs also, so I would recommend giving it a go to get more visitors to your site. They submit to 14 search engines for free. One of the 14 requires an ROR file, which can only be added to a site rather than a blog, but still worth doing for the other 13 engines. If you opt for a paid service, they will submit to 100's of sites at regular intervals. I prefer FREE services myself!

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