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2.1 Do Search Engines know about you, and do they know enough?

To put it simple, let's check if Search Engines know about your site and will tell the visitors about it if someone's looking for your offer.

Normally, Search Engines will send a robot (also called bot, spider, or crawler) to look around the Web, to see what's new and what's going on in general. Moreover, the spider will look through web pages and evaluate how good and useful they are. But crawlers only come to the places they know about.

So if you launched a site www.buymyproduct.org and, say, Yahoo! doesn't know about it, you can wait for weeks and months and any longer. The spider will hardly visit you.

Unless you make an invitation. And soon I'll tell you how this invitation for Search Engines is done.

In 2003, I met a client in Belgium I'm still working with. Cyr is now the big boss of several flower delivery services in Belgium and Netherlands, and he just launched one in Germany. Sure, SEO is #1 in his business weapons arsenal.

But the story starts with how I found him. I went to see my cousin who studied psychology in Brussels, and Cyr turned to be his roommate. He just launched an online flowers delivery store (great idea for a student, I guess!) and was wondering why it didn't work. Well, I made a simple check. He had a nice site, well-designed and correctly written. But Google.be just knew nothing about him!

We agreed on a favorable fee for an SEO campaign, and I began from submitting his website to Search Engines — and he started getting orders in about two weeks!

So, let's see what Search Engines know about your site www.buymyproduct.org. Go to the web page of the Search Engine that is important to you and type in the following query site:your_domain_name. For example, type site:buymyproduct.com.

DO IT NOW! Check if Search Engines see and display your website, and if the number of pages they show is correct.

Now let's see how it's done and what results it can bring. 4 situations are possible.

  • a) No results are found.

  • b) Some pages of the site are listed by the Search Engine, but they make up even less than 50% of the pages the site really has.

  • c) What the Search Engine shows is approximately the real amount of pages the site has.

  • d) What you see is too much, over 150% of how many pages the site really has.

Now, let me be fair: a) b) or d) is a red flag.
If you got no results at all, too few or too many, this means you have a problem.

Here's the good news, though. The problem can be solved, and I'll tell you how. But first, let's see where it really lays. There can be two basic problems that cause your trouble.

Problem 1: Your site hasn't been submitted to Search Engines yet.

Note! This problem is quite uncommon, and it can only be a reason for a): getting no results for the website at all.

Try to remember: did you submit your site to Search Engines, or maybe someone did that for you? Or, did you get a link to your site from some rather respected web page?
If your answer to both questions is "no", you'll need to correct the mistake. But it's simple and I guess it won't take more than 5 minutes to do. Search Engines' robots will then crawl your website the next time they're out and about, and you'll become visible.

57 comments

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#4351 2016-01-14 23:32:14 Anton Shutenko

g+ is very useful in this question, your site will be indexed much better

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#4023 2015-02-21 12:00:08 Ideamax SEO in Bulgaria

Is there a possibility the search engines to find the site without submitting?

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#4024 2015-02-23 02:36:34 Dan Richmond

Submitting a website is not a must today. Search engines crawl everything pretty fast today, so they will be able to find and index your site within several weeks.

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#4025 2015-02-26 11:50:07 Ideamax SEO in Bulgaria

Thanks!

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#3009 2012-05-09 02:41:39 Rumana Saiyed

Hi Dan,

You have done an excellent job by creating this online book. It will really help me a lot.

I am having one query. When I searched for site:amazingwebsolutions.com.au on google , the result was showing many more pages than the actual web pages of my website. So how can I reduce the no. of pages?

Kind Regards,
Rumana

Answer
#3032 2012-05-22 05:44:57 Dan Richmond

@Rumana Saiyed

Create a new sitemap which contains only actual pages of your website and submit this sitemap to Google webmaster tools. It will make Google drop old pages out of index faster.

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#2980 2012-05-01 15:49:54 Jansen Wendlandt

Awesome suggestion of seeing which of your pages ranks the highest in Google for the terms you have chosen!

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#2760 2012-02-14 06:18:40 evan tanski

Thanks to sharing important information about NHL and NFl. Keep it up.

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#2722 2012-02-02 03:41:13 evan tanski

I think that a good search engine optimizer doesn’t work alone. In fact he or she may have a phone-book-thick list of contacts and websites that have been collected through the years.

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#2564 2011-12-22 10:34:56 Alex Saville

I should add that it looks like it's expanding everything the gallery page out using the possible values from the database - e.g.: http://www.alexsavillephotography.com/m-imageshop-gallery2.php?shoot_id=16

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#2563 2011-12-22 10:33:02 Alex Saville

I've got a database driven picture gallery system on my site using MySQL and php (using the GET method mostly), and Google seems to pick this up, reporting more pages than I actually have - is this a problem?

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#2550 2011-12-13 06:17:52 babuska miki

From my experience: The less Google knows about you the better the Serps!

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#2536 2011-12-09 16:52:56 Jeff Childs

The search engines find me and index my pages. I seem to have duplicate pages being indexed and I fear is then causing me to be dinged in the search engines because of duplicate content, etc. I think the problem comes from having two folders: one correct and one with an extension /httpdocs/ added to the pages. I tried to delete each group of pages in the ftp folders, but that just caused problems with the online version of my site, so I have replaced them - better to have duplicate pages than no pages. My question is basically how to best correct the problem? Do I do a 301 redirect, delete the pages elsewhere, or another solution? Thanks.

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#2552 2011-12-15 08:52:40 Dan Richmond

You could do an .htaccess redirect if you can not fix the reason these pages get indexed: http://kb.mediatemple.net/questions/242/How+do+I+redirect+my+site+using+a+.htaccess+file%3F

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