Directory Submissions

Marketing your website for organic search relies heavily on your search engine optimization practices. Submitting your website to search engine directories is the first step to good Off-Page SEO. Only after your website is optimized for search (On-Page SEO), you should begin your directory submission process.

The standards for submission of a new website:

Google.com – Free to submit.
Yahoo.com –Free for their independent directory with no time guarantee, but fee based for the Yahoo directory with a time guarantee.
Bing.com – Free to submit.
DMOZ.com – The open source directory, free to submit.

Outside of the aforementioned directories, there are literally hundreds of directories which accept submissions—many are free, many are fee based either one-time or on an annual basis. Seeking out and submitting your site to these directories is the time and labor intensive part of the process. Not only do you have to pick appropriate directories, you need to ‘drill down’ to the exact category which is the best descriptor of your website. Also, make sure you submit to a directory that gets decent traffic and is well ranked. However, diligent work pays off in the form of valuable back links to your website which strengthens your site and positions you in a favorable light in the eyes of Google.

Local Search

When I take on a new client who only markets their product or service locally, I always run through a bevy of local search directories for submission. Many local search directories get great traffic and are well ranked—the key is submitting your listing so that it is optimized for search.
Google local and Yahoo local are again standards in this category—outside of that there are many others like Local.com, Superpages.com, MojoPages.com and MerchantCircle.com. Some give you the basics, but others let you really expand your listing and add additional content. It is usually a very tedious process of data entry, but in the long run does contribute to overall traffic—plus you get back links!

Basics of On-Page SEO

On-page SEO is the practice of placing certain keywords or phrases in the right places on your webs pages so that search engines know what each of your pages is about and rank those pages accordingly. Some keywords and phrases are in the content on your web pages. Other keywords and phrases also known as metadata are programmed into the code of your pages but are not always seen.

It’s important to remember that you need to place yourself in the shoes of the target individual/entity searching for your product or service. How would a potential customer perform a search query for you? What keywords would they type into Google?

Start by identifying keywords and phrases that people may be searching for related to your web page. When conducting your keyword research look for popular search terms and then try to add more specific words and phrases, associated keywords and phrases.


Pick selected keywords for each page and place them in the following places on your webpage:

Page Titles —The page title is key as it is the first item crawled by Google.
URL’s
--Keywords can be used to optimize a page that is a sub page of a main page.
Headings—The first words of each page

Add Meta Keywords—Hidden in code, but utilize the same keywords.

Add Meta Descriptions—Also hidden in code.

Images—Optimize all images with anchor titles/descriptions.

If you serve a specific geographic area, you should place geo-specific words in the page content before moving on to your next page.

You will want to repeat this for each page of your website as each page has a chance to rank for its own keywords and the keywords will be different as they will relate specifically to the content on that page.

Benefits of conducting On-Page SEO:

On-page SEO gives you a great opportunity to tell the search engines what your site is about. Once you have learned the process it will not take you a long time and should not be a major investment if you do it as you add new content.

If you have not optimized your website for On-Page SEO you should invest in it, as you will not be gaining any benefits from organic search.