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Web site listing and Design

Tips from Tonna for your PC
Web Site Listings
by Tonna Kutner

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Q. My company has built a beautiful web site, but we don’t get much business from it.  Someone said it needs to be listed.  What does that mean?

A:  “Listing” is incredibly important in getting new qualified customers to your site.  Many companies have a web site in order to attract new customers.  However, the potential customer has to be able to find your business.  Most likely, that new customer will use a search engine to find your company.

A search engine is a free service.  Popular ones are Yahoo, Google, Excite, Go, and LookSmart.  There are hundreds of search engines, but only eight or so that are really important.  In order to be sure that a customer will be able to successfully find your company, the site must be submitted to each of the important search engines.

Each search engine is different and each of them changes – so dealing with search engines can be complicated. Some use lots of humans to help the engines.  Some charge for the submission process, others are free.  They’re like a multi-dimensional, dynamic crossword puzzle, part of which can be seen and part of which is invisible.  There is also a lot of competition among companies vying with each other for top billing.  If this sort of thing intrigues you and you want to find out more, type in keywords “search engine criteria” on one of the search engines and start following some of the links. 

If you really want your potential customer to find you, it’s not enough to just submit your site to search engines. You also want to be sure that your site is coded properly. This is because, when using a search engine, a customer will type in “keywords” that refer to the type of product or service they are looking for.  The search engine will then go and find sites that feature those keywords. If you want your customer to find you, your site must feature the proper keywords.

When I help companies go through the listing process, often the most difficult piece is determining exactly what keywords are the right for the company.  Whether you have a web site or not, here are two activities to see how your company might be listed on the internet. 

  1. Bring out and/or revise your company’s statement of purpose – those words are very important. 

  2. Go surfing on the web and pretend you’re looking for your company.  What keywords do you type in?  Who comes up?  Are they your competition?  Are they an ally?  Who is your competition and what keywords do they use?  Ask your customers what keywords they would type in to find you.

I encourage you to try these things: You might start looking at your company in a whole new way.

If you have a computer question you would like answered in this space, send it to tonna@computer-lynx.com.

For past columns of Tips from Tonna, check out the web site: www.computer-lynx.com.

Tonna Kutner, Computer LYNX, works with companies to list and develop their web sites.  Phone (206) 575-3979 or email tonna@computer-lynx.com. Visit Tonna’s website at www.computer-lynx.com.

Printed in "Verve" - March  2001. Copyright Tonna Kutner

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