A great deal can be said about not putting your eggs in one basket. Not that we all haven’t heard it all before though. But at the root of this message lies a fundamental wisdom that cannot be denied. Particularly in regard to search engine optimization.
With all of the constant tweaks, prods and beta-testing going on with the new and improved search engine algorithms, this ensures one thing with certainty, that at any time your rankings could drop for specific keywords your website depends on. As a result you can weather the storm, understanding this to be a phenomenon which is anticipated and planned for accordingly with a solid SEO strategy.
The problem is, we have a tendency to be attached to our viewpoints and sometimes another viewpoint is all it takes (for a break-through), more specifically shifting the focus of your search engine optimization efforts. If you are “Google Sighted” like so many of us (which is why it is the default of zillions) then we only care about what happens in the periphery of the Google Bot and how it impacts our rankings.
But one only need consider that there are more than 3 search engines that exist B.G. (Before Google) I know many of you find that hard to believe, so I will repeat it again “there are more search engines to consider than Google, Yahoo and MSN“. Despite the fact that they are my favorites, but everyone walks to the beat of a different drum. Take for example kartoo (a very cool flash based search engine) that shows you relationship charts based on common keywords in the meta data.
Then you have icons like altavista, Go.com, dogpile, Alexa, Lycos hotbot, and newcomers like ASK (new generation of search engine), and countless others that are up and coming in popularity & function.
The point is, take a breeze through some of those search engines, type in your main “Google Blind” search terms (keyword you rank highly for in Google) and see where you rank across the board. If your consistently in the top 10 for 2 out of 3 search engines for your main keywords, then you can save yourself the trouble of reading any further, if your not consistently in the top 10 or top 20 for your main keywords, chances are there are some crawler or ping issues you need to work out.
SEO Tactic #1
Try getting an ROR Site Map (like an XML site map, but instead it is interpreted by thousands of search engines in addition to the big 3. Here is a great resource to create an ROR Site map for your website. At this point, I can hear our competitors groveling something murmured under their breathe like, “Man, when is this guy going to shut up!!! and quit telling people our secret SEO techniques? D#@N…..he’s at it again” and after you have added it, don’t forget to ping the search engines and let them know you’ve got some goodies for them. In case your wondering what a ping is, just think of it like throwing a spitball, or launching a taunt rubber band at the back of someones neck, (ping!)…trust me you will get their attention.
If you have a blog, you can use Ping-o-matic to get the word out.
If you have a regular website then you can always go old school and use some code like: http://api.my.yahoo.com/rss/ping?u=[add your domain here] less the brackets of course. Or by using Ping-o-matic, you already have done that by the time your reading the next step, so save yourself some time go back, click all of the applicable search engines and automate the process with one click.
For those who insist on code, you can also use the how to manual Google Provides, or just leave it up to the spiders to do their job. These shortcuts and snippets of commands come in handy, when you finally see where you rank in some of these other search engines and you see the content from when your site was 2 months old and it still has you referenced under that time frame. That is definitely a sign that you need to find the code to ping that search engine. Here is a page about such information for pinging ASK.com
You cannot exist on bread alone, you need to spice it up with variety from time to time. Not to mention (god forbid) that something in your site caused your rankings to slip in Google (if that is all you were concerned with) then where does that leave your livelihood, except for you holding the bag with a big “what do I do now” look on your face…
SEO Tactic #2
Trust me, save yourself the agony and invest some time in finding out, what each of these search engines likes about your website. Perform some tests on your links check out your site by typing in your URL and see which pages in which order are returned. You can tell allot about which websites that link to you and which search engines like them based on the chronology of the site:www.yourdomain.com command. Granted this will not work in some search engines, but their should be some way in which to determine how many pages you are indexed in, for each of the respective engines.
When you view the link command results look for the pages that are higher up in the search results, if you are in Yahoo and you see one site predominantly rising above the others, then realize that that site has authority in Yahoo. You can also socially book mark your posts in del.icio.us or sign up to MyBlogLog as well (since Yahoo is the parent company) and that should unleash the slurp spider to devour your content. Let the ROR site map bait the rest.
Visibility equals probability. The more chances for your website to make an impression, the more chances are it will do just that, “impress someone” enough to take action and investigate your offer or value proposition a little bit further. Catch the eye of enough decision makers and you have carved yourself a niche that you can rely on to keep doing what their doing, as long as you are doing what entertains them or piques their undying interest.
So, why take the chance of relying on traffic from one source (because your SEO was Google Sighted) vs. enjoying the other thousands of potential visitors from other search engines, rss feeds, social communities and other unique viral methods for creating a buzz for your niche. Remember, it’s not how they saw you, as much as they fact that they saw you. Does a visitor really care which search engine or link they followed after finding a satisfying article or post, or that cool pair of shoes you been looking for, or the new specs on the latest gadget? I would hardly think so, what matters is, they employed a means to an end and utilized search for what it was designed for “finding what your looking for“…