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Trying to nail down Direct Hit
Is it worth the time?

 2:27 am on Apr 10, 2001 (gmt 0)

I am toying with the Direct Hit pages and wondering....well what should I do to them? What do they look for?

Who uses them? Hotbot, Lycos, MSN, Ask Jeeves...is that it. How much weight does it really have?



 6:03 am on Apr 10, 2001 (gmt 0)

I find that if I do a search on my keywords and click on my link in directhit, it is enough to give me a substantial boost in their ratings of my site. Apparently there is little traffic on those keywords, so a click makes a big difference. Oddly enough, though, there is another site that is either just above or below mine that also gets a boost. Don't know why.

Now by a boost, I mean that I have more of the guys filled in. I'm already at #1 or #2, so the position doesn't change.

So for about a minute a day, I can get some small benefit.

Someone want to write a tool that allows you to punch in a url and a set of keywords and have it punch it for you? I suppose that I'll get around to it eventually.


 8:07 am on Apr 10, 2001 (gmt 0)

Ive been trying to nail down DH for a long time now.
One thing you do need to do is click on your link once a day to keep it active (assuming you appear in the results of course)
They do seem to track the ip address of the clicker to stop artificial boosting.
THere keyword algo baffles me - what workd for one page does not seem to work for another....


 1:36 pm on Apr 10, 2001 (gmt 0)

>>Someone want to write a tool that allows you to punch in a url and a set of keywords and have it punch it for you?

Has been tried in the past with Perl but to no success. Like Jimmykav said, they must be tracking by IP.

jeremy goodrich

 1:54 pm on Apr 10, 2001 (gmt 0)


In case you haven't read it yet, we had some discussion about the Direct hit algo recently, as regards to the click thoughs, etc here [webmasterworld.com...]

I believe that if you've gotten their spider to come around, you'll do okay. I haven't ever optimized specifically for them, so I can't say exactly what elements to put into the pages, but my standard efforts include good site navigation, H1, bold, links off site, on site themes, and a keyword density around 6-12%.

As long as you can find your site by keyword, you'll do okay. Even if it's not near the top, rotate the ip you surf on, via proxy or what have you, and keep clicking. I'm sure it will help.

Robert Charlton

 5:22 am on Apr 11, 2001 (gmt 0)

12%??? I'm trying to imagine what a page with a 12% keyword density would read like.

a) Are you talking about very short pages with the 12%, in which case it makes sense? or...

b) How are you computing that 12%? Say you have a 100 word page with a 3 word phrase... Are you calling one occurrence of that phrase 1% (ie, each word occurs once in 100) or 3% (3 words out of 100)?

jeremy goodrich

 1:36 pm on Apr 11, 2001 (gmt 0)

:) The pages I'm referring to I count the density as both metas, title, h1 style description, as well as the actual content. And I'm also removing stop words in the count, and adding to that the words used in anchors, be they pointed within site or not.

The pages are also not terribly long on content, but then, I don't calculate the densities every time. There are many reasons you can end up with larger desities than this, and still do okay, if you are including the keywords in the anchor tags to the rest of your site:

say you have 5 products, all with a 2 word combo as a phrase, part of the description, and in the hyperlink to the product specific page detailing all the nitty gritty about your "inexpensive widgets." Add those links together, with the little product descriptions you might use, if it's a catalogue style page with a cluster of related products, and you easily end up with high densities.


 2:22 pm on Apr 11, 2001 (gmt 0)

I have been using the same page I use for Ink. Lots of bold and <h1,2,3> tags and the all important meta desc and title tags are simplified using only the keywords.

I recently started seeing them spider my site and thats what spurred the interest.

Honestly I cant see the effect of Direct Hit with all the paid stuff in the way.

Robert Charlton

 4:15 pm on Apr 11, 2001 (gmt 0)

>>The pages I'm referring to I count the density as both metas, title, h1 style description, as well as the actual content<<

Now it makes sense. For my basic density measurement, I just look at body text and exclude all of these things (though body text does include hx headings and link text). I think different sections should probably have different densities.

How would you regard the phrase example I gave above? Is a 3 word phrase used once in a 100 word text a 3% density or a 1%? I tend to think of it as 1%... but I find not everyone looks at these things the same.

Also, to get more back on topic here, I do think Direct Hit is important because it affects positioning on HotBot and other Inktomi engines in various ways, as well as Lycos... and that DH affects the first results reported on HB. I've always thought that whatever would generally do well on Ink, AV, Fast would do well on DH.

Regarding densities, I think it's possible to go too high... noticing this on Google, where in really competitive areas, the body text densities (and this depends on how you measure them :) ) are under 5%, often under 4%. Links are skewing the very top, but I'm not seeing anyone that's super dense.

I don't think you can boost yourself by clicking through (carefully and discreetly) on anything popular. On rare terms, one of the dangers is falling out because of non-use, so when I do occasional test searches I tend to click through... and I do that on DH too. Not sure it's enough to amount to anything.


 6:24 pm on Apr 11, 2001 (gmt 0)

I believe that if you've gotten their spider to come around, you'll do okay.

I get visits from their spiders, but when I ocassionally stop by their site and search for my site by business name, I always get "no results"...

I don't pay much attention to them at all.

<edit>the typo queen strikes again...</edit>

Edited by: mivox


 6:34 pm on Apr 11, 2001 (gmt 0)

They are worth targeting, on some phrases the traffic from AskJeeves can be quite good, not to mention HB and Lycos.

celtic gnome

 6:38 pm on Apr 11, 2001 (gmt 0)

Couple questions concerning Direct Hit. Is Direct Hit important enough (across the board traffic wise)to spend time trying to figure out what works and what doesn't? This is totally for me (I am not clear on the positioning aspect of DH, so that is why I am asking) by the way. When a site first enters their directory, at what position does it start off? (or another way to ask: In the top ____ (i.e. Top 20, 30, 40?)should I be searching for the site?

Does anyone know how often you can boost your click throughs without getting caught? (or, is once a day noticeable or should it be once a week?) (Total side note: Is there any other engines/directories that you can boost your rankings with click through traffic?)

Thanks in advance for any and all answers to my questions.

jeremy goodrich

 8:13 pm on Apr 11, 2001 (gmt 0)

Welcome to the WebmasterWorld celtic_gnome.

You've asked a lot of questions, I'll try to get them all, but if I miss one, please let me know.

When you first enter their db, I don't know where you appear, but I recall from their white paper a while ago it was "high enough" to start collecting click data, and there by either move up or down, depending.

After you're in, take a look at this: [webmasterworld.com...]

We were discussing the click through data, etc. and how you should do it properly to increase your rankings.

The other engines that track click through data: pretty much everybody, these days. But how many of them use that data? Publically none, unless you count inktomi, but then, I feel their relevance is equal to money paid in. Just IMO.

Their traffic isn't great, but worth it for Ask, MSN, Hotbot, and Lycos. Between the directhit syndication at those places, as well as AOL, and others who use their data like meta engines, they are more than worth your time.

However, I believe that if you read through the posts above, you can get a good feel for how to gain in position there.

Again, welcome to the fora!

celtic gnome

 3:46 pm on Apr 13, 2001 (gmt 0)

Thank you for the welcome and information Jeremy. This is very usefull and I am pouring over the thread and information that you suggested. One more question for you guys. Is Direct Hit a downliner for anyone? I noticed that Direct Hit is more important than Hotbot as far as initial submissions, so it seems that Direct Hit is the main supplier to multiple downliners. If this is the case, then the only way into Direct Hit is through a submission to Direct Hit. I guess I just want you guys to affirm my thinking.

thanks in advance
the gnome

jeremy goodrich

 4:14 pm on Apr 13, 2001 (gmt 0)

I guess you could say it that way. Your submission to the directhit.com search engine will filter through to their partners. To power their db, they only use their own data.

So, to get ranked well in directhit, you need to submit your site to them. And later on, it will start appearing on their partners search engine results pages.


 7:41 pm on Apr 23, 2001 (gmt 0)

Hello all! I noticed you are discussing Direct Hit which happens to be my focus for the day. I was wondering if anyone out there knows why there are 3 sites listed at the top of DH's results that are being specifically called "Partner Results."

Are these sites that are found in other SE's ie Lycos, etc; hence they are given more relevancy just for that link and not click throughs? If that is the case I don't get it. We have a gagillion (ok that's an exageration but you get the point) links on Lycos that were "thrown" out there by a previous promotion company. Wouldn't this affect us on DH? Or are these combo's of:

# of links + click throughs = A spot as partner results.

Let me know. I could be WAY off base here, and they just might be paid listings. Looking forward to hearing from someone. Have a good one!


P.S. Off the subject stupid question: how the heck do you guys get those smiley faces on here? Love them!


 7:46 pm on Apr 23, 2001 (gmt 0)

Duh!!!! Ok should have checked further. I'm pretty sure that's GoTo feeding the "Partner Sites" results. If anyone has any input on it though I'd greatly appreciate it. Sorry.

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