Here are two very important tips to help your site do better in Google, MSN and Yahoo. It's easy and it's common sense and anyone can do it just as soon as you finish reading here. But of course, as usual, before I provide the tip, I've got to give you my reasoning. My readers know I'm...uh...kind of long-winded.
First tip: For those of you that use link farms- stop. They very well may be hurting you.
In case you aren't aware, link farms are often called "directories." They contain no useful information whatsoever. Google crawls these sites and doesn't find what Google loves- which is information. All it finds is page after page of links. The Google doesn't like this. Some of you have been ripped-off already and have paid for links from these places. Sorry about that. Only good days ahead though!
I wrote a post last week called The Big Gay Mortgage Directory, and the post was about a useless directory, with no Google page rank, charging Realtors $80 to list themselves as gay-friendly.
Whether you are gay-friendly or not, you should not pay money for a link from a link farm. If you haven't read that post, and you have paid for so-called "directory" links in the past, you might want to click the link above and take a look.
Not all directories are bad however.
It takes some experience to sniff out the good ones, but there are some good real estate directories out there. I'm not going to promote any of them here, but I am going to promote the best directory on the internet.
DMOZ.org is called a "search engine" by many people, but it's actually a directory...
From their website, DMOZ is: "the largest, most comprehensive human-edited directory of the Web. It is constructed and maintained by a vast, global community of volunteer editors."
You see, DMOZ is a directory that holds sites to the highest standards. Unlike Google, which will eventually find any site by "crawling" the web, the DMOZ has every site manually inputted by users (Realtors for example) and then checked over by a volunteer editor. If you pass muster, you just gave yourself a very powerful, one-way, inbound link to your website.
Unlike with Google, the DMOZ will not allow any sites that have "under construction" pages, or spyware...or any crap. When you submit your site to the DMOZ, it better be an honest, well-done site, or the volunteer army of editors will not list your site at all.
So what you have with the DMOZ is a very pure search engine of sorts. Google, of course, knows this. The DMOZ has been around a long time. MSN actually crawls the DMOZ and if you are listed, will use the DMOZ's description of your site in the MSN search results. That's how important this website is to the other search engines.
Getting listed in the DMOZ is one of the most important (and basic) steps you can take in advancing your site. It has an AWESOME page rank of eight and...
Any other site that has a page rank of 8 will be charging you for text links, and it would be worth every penny. In fact, if you can get a link from a PR 8 site and they asked you for $500 a year-- pay it. (P.S.-- if you don't know what page rank is, you can read about that here.)
So go register your site on the oh-so-free DMOZ right now.
But a word of warning: They are very particular about who is accepted. Make sure you submit your site in the proper place. Read their rules carefully before submitting! Once more: Read the rules carefully.
Do not lie about anything. They will not allow you to use hyperbole-- ("I am the best Realtor in Denver!!!")-- and they won't allow you to manipulate them. Again, it's an army of geeks guarding this directory and you don't want to mess with 'em.
First, search for yourself and make sure you're not already listed. If you are not, browse to your area, for example: http://dmoz.org/Regional/North_America/United_States/Arizona/Business_and_Economy/Real_Estate/
Chris Elizabeth Griffith posted a very useful comment on the topic of getting accepted:
I went back and reviewed the entries and the one's that have the agency name in the headline are accepted. That must be key (until one changes brokerages).
Thank you Chris!
Take your time; submit a good listing and-- once you get listed-- I can absolutely guarantee you will move up in every single search engine. Honest to goodness. Take that to the bank baby.