I want my site listed and ranked higher on Google and Bing, how can I do this?

Many factors determine where a site ranks in different search engines, but the algorithms that perform these functions for the major search engines are mostly a mystery because they are kept secret. As a result, it's difficult to say specifically why some sites are ranked higher than others or how to change your site so it is ranked higher.

How do I get my site listed on Google and Bing?

The amount of time it takes for search engines to index a website can vary widely. It can take days, weeks or even months to get a new website indexed. It's not really possible to predict when Google will find and index your site. But there are a few ways to speed up that process. 

The simplest way to alert Google about your new website is to use their basic Site Sumbit page. A more advanced option is to use Google's Webmaster Tools which allows you to alert Google about your site and provide other information. This requires some search engine optimization knowledge, but, there are extensive help articles and tutorials on the Google site that will explain how to use these tools if you are so inclined.

Bing also has a Site Submit page that let's you alert them to the existence of your website, as well as more advanced Webmaster Tools.

Another good way to speed up the Google indexing process is to set up Google Analytics for your website. This essentially alerts Google to the existence of your website because the pages of your website will need to be indexed to provide analytics. Google Analytics also gives you valuable information about traffic on your website and is free to use. Please see the Google Analytics FAQ for information on how to get started.

To find out if Google has indexed the pages on your site, do a Google site search by typing this into the search box: site:mydomain.com where "mydomain.com" is your website's domain name. This will show you what pages Google has already indexed. If there are no results, it means Google hasn't found your website yet. If only a few pages appear, it means Google hasn't yet found all the other pages on your website or hasn't finished the indexing process. 

What about other search engines?

As long as your site is listed by Google and Bing, other search engines will find your website. For example, Yahoo now uses the Bing index to provide website searches on their website. Many other sites use Google to provide search results.

How can I optimize my site for search engines?

Meta Tags are one of the means used by search engines to evaluate the type of content on your website and it's relevance to particular search terms. They are invisibly embedded on every page of your website and contain information such as Title, Description and Keywords. 

The KultureShock.Net Control Center allows you to create and edit your own meta-tags. To modify your website's meta-tags, click on the Website Options tab in the Control Center. We recommend you keep the list of keywords short — twenty or less. Using too many keywords, very long titles or very long descriptions may prompt some search engines to truncate your meta-tag information, or ignore your pages entirely. Also, make sure your meta tags accurately describe the kind of content on the pages of your site as Google will compare them to the actual content on your website. If a search engine detects that you are "keyword stuffing" your meta tags, your website pages may be ignored. 

Are there ways to make my website appear higher in search results?

Yes. Most of the work is done for you in the way your website is coded with hidden meta and HTML tags. But there are a few things you can do to help increase your site ranking. 

Get other high-quality sites to link to your website

Ask other websites that mention you to add a link back to your website. This applies to management, public relations, venues, online reviews, or anywhere else your name appears on other websites. You can find these sites by doing a search for your name (in quotes) and seeing what comes up highest in the search results. Contact as many sites as you can and give them the address for the page on their website that mentions you and say "I saw that you mention me on your website, would you mind also adding a link to my website? Thanks!" Often they will. The more high-quality websites that link to yours, the higher your site ranking will be. 

Set up a Wikipedia page for yourself

Wikipedia pages are often ranked very high in most search engines. As a performing artist, you can set up a Wikipedia page for yourself and include a link to your website. Use the Wikipedia Article Wizard to guide you through this process. 

Include your website address on everything about you

Make sure everything about you has a link to your website or displays your website address. This includes all publicity and marketing materials, social media accounts, your email signature, everything! The more people who know about and go to your website, the more traffic your site will get and that can translate into higher site ranking. 

Be patient

As mentioned above, it can sometimes take weeks or even months before your site is indexed and then moves up in rank. All newly-indexed sites have to earn "trust" with Google and Bing before they move higher in page ranking, and that simply takes time. If you've done all the things mentioned above, wait for a few weeks and see if there has been any improvement in your ranking. Usually there will be. 

Beware!

There are a lot of search engine optimization (SEO) businesses that will claim they can get your site listed in the top 5 or top 10 for a fee. They usually use what are called "black hat" techniques to do this. While it may result in short-term improvement of your site ranking, there's a good chance it will lead to your site being blacklisted by search engines who detect that your site is using questionable techniques to "game" their algorithms. And once your domain is blacklisted, your site will no longer appear in search results and it's very hard to undo that damage. We recommend you ignnore spam emails you may receive touting better ranking for your website, they are usually scams.  

Be sure your site is turned ON so that search engines can find your pages. This is done on the Dashboard (home) of the Control Center. 

Click here for more detailed information on site and page ranking on Google.

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