The first thing you need to understand about Google is that, given time, if your site is on the Web
and has at least one link to it, you will eventually be crawled. As an example, I have never done
anything with my personal web site by way of SEO. I haven’t checked the code to ensure that it’s
written with search engines in mind. I haven’t used or invested in keywords, and I haven’t submit-
ted my site to a search engine.
Yet, if you type my name into the Google search engine, my personal web site will be the first result
returned. I’m ranked number one for my name, because (presumably) there is only one of me. If
someone searches for my name, I’m at the top of the list. And that’s good.
But your site is probably going to be much more diverse than mine, so how do you get Google to
take notice? Again, be patient. Google will crawl your site in a short period of time (sometimes it
takes less than a week). And once your site has been crawled, you can begin the slow climb through
the search results.
On my personal site, it took nearly a year to reach the top ranking slot for my site. But I never did
anything to boost that rank. It’s my personal web site, so I don’t put a lot of effort into it. In short,
it is what it is, without any type of SEO strategy at all.
If your site is topically related to other sites, however, you probably won’t be able to throw your
site on the Web and wait for it to be indexed at number one. And although you will be indexed
automatically, you’ll have to compete for top placement.
Google doesn’t sell placement, either. There are ads above and to the right side of the search results,
but ads are the only placement that’s available for purchase. That means that where your site places
is based on your SEO and search marketing efforts.
Understanding Google PageRank
Google’s proprietary ranking algorithm is what makes it different from the other search engines. An
element of that algorithm is Google PageRank.
Google explains PageRank like this:
“PageRank relies on the uniquely democratic nature of the Web by using its vast link structure as an indica-
tor of an individual page’s value. In essence, Google interprets a link from page A to page B as a vote, by
page A, for page B. But, Google looks at considerably more than the sheer volume of votes, or links a page
receives; for example, it also analyzes the page that casts the vote. Votes cast by pages that are themselves
“important” weigh more heavily and help to make other pages “important.” Using these and other factors,
Google provides its views on pages’ relative importance.
Of course, important pages mean nothing to you if they don’t match your query. So, Google combines PageRank
with sophisticated text-matching techniques to find pages that are both important and relevant to your search.
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