Q and A : When will my site show up in Google ?

Question

Hi Kalena

I just created a site for world of warcraft hunter talent builds. It is a blog site, and I checked in cPanel, and googlebot has visited. But I am not indexed.  I tried ‘site:www.domainnameprovided.com’ in the google search box, but it can’t find me.

Is there an average time gap between googlebot crawling and your site showing up in results?  Or should it be basically instant (as long as your site is not rejected).  I checked my site and it seems that none of the keyword densities are above about 4%.  So please can you check out my site and tell me if I’m spamming somehow?
(Website URL Provided)

Thanks
Danny

Hi  Danny

This is quite a common “concern” for owners of brand new sites.  Many have an expectation that their site will automatically show up in the search engines as soon as their site is launched.  As you’ve discovered this is certainly not the case.

Google and other search engines are pretty good at finding new sites (eventually) but there are a number of things that you can do to help speed up this process.  The best way to be found is to get links to your site from other third party sites – the higher the profile, and the more relevant these sites to yours the better.  It is also possible to “submit” your website url to Google via http://www.google.com/addurl/ – but you are much better off getting third party links.  Creating a sitemap.xml file and submitting it via Webmaster Tools can also help.

Use a site: Query to See What is Indexed

Typically, you could expect your site to be crawled and at least partially indexed within a few weeks. Using the site: command as a search query – e.g. site:yourdomainname.com is a quick and easy way to determine what pages on your site are currently indexed by a search engine (this works under Google, Yahoo and Bing).

Under Google, it is likely that you will be found for a query on your business name, or some other unique string from your site – you may even (initially) achieve some reasonable rankings for more general keywords – but typically (unless your website covers a very niche area), these generic rankings are short lived, and you will more than likely not be found for most keyword phrases for 6 to 8 months (this is known as the sandbox effect)

Site Check

It’s now been a couple of weeks, and I’ve had a look at how your site is indexed in Google. You currently have a dozen or so pages indexed.  However, your site appears to be redirecting to another URL which is a subdomain of another site – and that other site contains a variety of other subdomains – some of which include adult content. This is likely to impact your rankings and you would be much better off setting up your site under it’s own hosting environment.

WOW sites are of course hugely popular, and this is a pretty competitive area.  There are many free WOW based blog “themes” available, and it looks to me like you have selected one of the free themes for your site.  This is OK – but is another factor that makes it difficult for you to differentiate your site from the others – and as far as the search engines are concerned could very well make it harder for you to “stand out from the crowd” and achieve better rankings than your competitors.

Keyword Density

Finally, don’t get too hung up on keyword densities. Whilst keywords are certainly important (and you should know which keyword phrases are the most important ones for you to optimise for) – you should be focusing on providing interesting, relevant, useful, and unique content for your users, rather than writing for the search engines.  If it is good for your users, it will be good for search.

Andy Henderson
Ireckon Web Marketing

Q and A: Review my site, Perth Florist

QuestionDear Kalena…

I was just wondering if you would have time to look at my site and give me any ideas of how I could improve it from a customer landing on the site for the first time. I seem to be getting good traffic but conversions are just average at best. Any ideas would be appreciated.

John

Dear John,

There could be lots of factors that result in lower than desired conversion rates. It’s possible that your expectations are too high. If you are only servicing one local community, you have to assume that a lot of your traffic may be coming to your site only to find out that you do not service their area. However, I never like to tell my clients that their expectations are too high, although that is sometimes the case.

The design and professional appearance of your site is terrific. It’s easy to navigate, has all of the important information, and even does a good job at up-selling the customer. One thing I noticed rather quickly is that you do not mention any of the benefits of your flower shop over any others in the Perth area. When someone lands on your site (according to statistics) most people look at the top left of the screen. I would try adding a big button above your left navigation that says something like “Same Day Delivery” or “Guaranteed Freshest Flowers in Perth”, or whatever. Just make sure it’s a benefit that keeps them on the page. Since most of your internet business is deliveries, you might want to feature more information about that on your homepage. In fact, wouldn’t it be really cool to have a little call-out on your site that displays every day up to 11am (your same-day delivery cut-off) that says “It’s not to late to have your flowers delivered today!”? I am sure you can do that with a little PHP code.

One feature of another florist I have used, which I think is nice, is a flexible pricing option. I noticed that some of your flowers have different sizes and different prices. Why not feature this on the category page instead of just the product page? When a user browses all of your flowers you should have a buttons that shows them that they can buy this plant for $12, $24 or $48…. you get the idea. It’s just really nice to know that if they like a specific arrangement, they don’t have to spend $75. Check out this site to see what I am talking about.

You may want to also add a search box on your site. Not only does this help your customer find what they are looking for, but it also gives you invaluable intelligence about what your customers want! Google Analytics has a great feature that allows you to read a log of whatever people are typing in your search box. It provides great information for e-retailers.

Lastly, your site analytics could help you to find out where all of your traffic is going. For example, if you find that 90% of your traffic is entering your site through your index page and that you have a high bounce rate (users who click right off the site), or a very low “time on site”, you’ll know that your homepage may need to be optimized for sales. You may also want to determine what the most frequent exit page is. If you find that most people leave your site on the delivery information page, than perhaps you need to look at your delivery policies, or even your fees.

Again, your site looks very nice! Good luck, and thanks for the question!

Nick
www.TheSmallMerchant.com