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I am currently working on a project and my client has requested to find a way to get her site at the top of the list when people do a search (realty business). That being said, I saw where you can pay to have sites submitted to the top search engines like Google, Yahoo, MSN plus 200 more for only $99.00.. Is this something that should be done or is it a waste of time. Just make sure you have correct key phrases and titles on your web pages.
If someone can just fill me in on the $99 deal on submitting my site to all the search engines. Is is worth it or is it just a scam.
Sure, you can pay someone $99 to "submit" your site to search engines. But why pay someone $99 for something you can do yourself for free? Other than G, Y, &M, few other search engines would be worth spending the time to submit to. And the Big 3 probably won't give you any weight for just submitting the site to them- they still look for the important stuff: content, inbound links, etc.
Sorry, but there is no shortcut (except, of course, for the guy hawking the $99 submission deal).
For a new site, a one time submission doesn't hurt, but log in to Webmaster Tools (or create an account, if you haven't), create a sitemap, do the site verification, follow the recommendations.
Additionally, getting into the index alone will not do this . . .
get her site at the top of the list when people do a search (realty business)
Real estate. Wow, you're in a needle and haystack niche there. The way to do this is relatively simple: lots of pages on real estate. It's all about content. Even then, you might rank for "[cityname] real estate" or similar, but real estate alone is going to be a tough one.
ex. Cityname homes for sale or Cityname, ST homes for sale, even Homes for sale in Cityname, ST.
One site my client showed me (competitor) gets tons of hits and people contacting her all the time (they phrase it as "Leads").
As you can see her site don't get any more plain. But from reviewing her site, she has a lot of good content. My client tells me that this site gets 3 times more hits than hers which is here
[snip] (the site that I will be re-designing).
Maybe someone can provide some info to why this is happening? Scenarios would work also :)
Thanks for the input!
[edited by: phranque at 7:04 am (utc) on Sep. 13, 2009]
[edit reason] No urls, please. See TOS [webmasterworld.com] [/edit]
getting "tons of hits" doesn't say much until you know how they got there.
if it is organic search traffic, what were the search terms?
maybe they are searching for "homes for sale in Really Excellent Neighborhood" instead of "homes for sale in City Name".
how well are your client's pages optimized for those search terms?
in general i would consider the title to be the most important on-page element to optimize for search so start with that.
As you can see her site don't get any more plain. But from reviewing her site, she has a lot of good content.
You answered your own question. I have an art background, have spent 15 years in the printing industry - mostly in creative - developed websites for 16, most of which involved design, so of all people I should be the least likely to maintain this position. But the fact is: design is not the most important thing.
If the examples you gave boggle you, think for one moment about one of the most successful sites on the web: craigslist.org. Why does it succeed? It's certainly not because it's cool, has better graphics, better design.
It's all about content, always has been, always will be, I think.
The trick is to turn those visits into conversions and sales leads. Many times a content site is just that, people visit, get what they need, and leave. So "3 times more visits" may not mean three times more successful.
Google, Yahoo, MSN...
Google, Yahoo, and MSN will find you by themselves, via inbound links to your site from other sites in their indexes. You need inbound links to help your rankings as well as to be found, so if they can't find you then you won't rank anyway. A submission service will not help you.
...plus 200 more...
Forget the 200 more. They won't help you either. They're likely to be "free-for-all directories", which may even hurt you in Google.
Make sure that the content of your client's site is original... that it hasn't been copied from somewhere else or purchased as a templated package (common in the real estate market)... and that it's truly informative, good enough that it's worth linking to.
Some good directory listings may also help you get started, but you're not going to get those in a $99 package. There are not many good directories. Those that are good generally charge for review and they don't list everybody. They are well edited and well organized.
I would do some reading in the Directory forum here, and also the Link Building forum, to get an idea what a good directory is and what's involved in getting inbound links. Directory submission, like link building, takes time and research.
Dropping links on forum threads, btw, is not a good way to get relevant, good quality inbound links. ;)
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