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Best Practices for Search Engine Submission

According to, search engine submission refers to the act of getting your website listed with search engines. It is also known as search engine registration. It doesn't have anything to do with your ranking with the search engines. Search Engine Watch says that search engine submission is akin to your purchasing a lottery ticket. Having one doesn't mean that you will win, but you must have a ticket to have any chance at all.

Search engine optimization refers to altering your site so that it may rank well for particular keywords, especially with crawler-based search engines like Google or MSN. Search engine placement, also known as search engine positioning and search engine ranking refer to a site actually doing well for particular keywords or for a range of keywords. Search engine marketing, also known as search engine promotion refers to the overall process of marketing a site on search engines, which includes submission, optimization, optimizing paid listings and more.

Before submitting your site, here are some things you should have in your site the following elements: descriptive keywords, relevant links, unique Meta Tags for promoting each URL, easy navigation, catchy design, original content and quality resources. Having these will make it easier for the search engine to spider (index) your site once it finds you. Once you’ve put your site together, it’s time to get ready to submit it to the search engines. It’s a good idea to first familiarize yourself with each of the search engines before submitting your sites. Then, you’ll have a better idea of what they expect, and you may find some ways to further optimize your site before actually submitting it.

Here are some basic guidelines for search engine submission, once you feel your site is ready:

Establish Your Budget

Free search engine submission is still possible, but free search engine submission companies often spam the search engines with repeated submissions. Automated submissions are not always good, either, pretty much for the same reasons free ones don’t work well. So, it’s recommended that you establish a budget for search engine submission. To start with, it costs $299 to be listed in Yahoo’s human-compiled directory for a year. For those needing to be listed quicker, a pay-per-click (PPC) service should seriously be considered. Once you’ve been there for a while, you’ll start generating some natural, free, listings. It usually costs about $15 to get set up with a PPC plus the cost per click (CPC).

Submit to the Open Directory Project (aka ODP or DMOZ)

The Open Directory Project, like Yahoo, is a human-compiled directory built by volunteers. It is provided as an option at many major search engines, including Google. So, getting listed in the Open Directory Project can help your search engine rankings. To submit to the Open Directory, locate the category under which you want to be listed and click the “Add URL” link. Fill out the form, and your site has been submitted. The editors will review your site for relevance under the chosen category and your site will appear within about 6 weeks if it’s approved.

Crawler-based Search Engines

The best way to submit to crawler-based engines is to have an outside link to your site. By submitting to Yahoo and the Open Directory, this has pretty much been accomplished. But, it’s good to have other sites linking to you. It helps your search engine rankings.

In addition to having other sites linking to you, most crawler-based engines like Google have a “Add URL” page where you can key in the URL to your site. Add your home page and a couple of other important pages. Three’s no guarantee that your site will be listed this way, but it doesn’t hurt.

Submit a Google Sitemap

Finally, you can also build a XML sitemap, also referred to as a Google Sitemap. Although many call it a Google sitempay, it can be submitted to Google, Yahoo, MSN and Ask. They all support the XML format. And, you can submit the sitemaps even after you’ve submitted your site. Visit for more information on XML sitemaps. You can also build your XML sitemap there.