Launching a New Site : With SEO in Mind & as if Search Engines Did Not Exist

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Launch a new site with SEO in mind:

1. Choose a relevant domain name – I am not saying “keyword based” domain as that’s getting more and more difficult, but “relevant” domain that will:

  • help your readers/customers associate your site with your niche;
  • ensure relevant backlink anchor text (people tend refer to a site using its domain name).

2. Think over website structure (I am listing only those points that are crucially important at the very start):

  • URL structure (short static-looking, page-title-based URLs);
  • Website size (if you are planning to launch a huge dynamic website, don’t start with showing search engines all multiple pages – start with few most important ones and then grow it gradually and consistently).

Pretend search engines do not exist (enjoy your life while waiting for search engines to find you):

1. Don’t try to get the site indexed as fast as possible:

  • don’t rush to get backlinks to show a search engine your site (SEs are so heavily spammed that it might make things even worse);
  • don’t submit your site to SEs (that’s stopped working long ago).

2. Gradually update your content;

3. Search for alternative traffic sources: start commenting at relevant blogs, participate in forums and social media. That’s a great way to find your audience before a SE finds you and also generate nice natural backlinks from people you meet there.

4. Don’t rush correcting the mistakes once your site is indexed and you see that something is wrong. If you, for example, see the SEs indexing ‘wrong’/’extra’ links (you might have forgotten to nofollow) or ranking some non-important pages higher than your home page, don’t try to implement any changes at the very start. Continue enjoying your life until SEs make sure your site is good, then steadily implement changes if you still think they are necessary.

Ann Smarty
Ann Smarty is the blogger and community manager at Internet Marketing Ninjas. Ann's expertise in blogging and tools serve as a base for her writing, tutorials and her guest blogging project,
Ann Smarty
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  • Barry Welford

    Good post, Ann. Simply put it’s getting the fundamentals right then watching it grow.

  • Eric Martindale

    Great post! You’ve got a great point about diversifying traffic sources – organic traffic can fluctuate, and can even disappear entirely.

  • Gary Huhn

    Ann, I completely agree. Stick with the basics and let the rest play out before diving into more advanced techniques.

  • David DuVal

    The way I think of SEO, I just include it as part the normal task of writing good HTML. Your pages need the following:
    1. Page Titles
    2. Headings
    3. Easy to use navigation
    4. Alt text of images (also a standard)
    5. Correct use of the meta title and meta description

    In many ways this IS search engine optimization. You are making it possible for search engines to understand what your page is about, what the images depict, which parts of the page are the most imports, and which links they can follow next.

    Outside of this, I feel most activities are marketing, not optimization. Your thoughts?

  • James, SEO, Australia.

    Nice overall approach to SEO and some good points made, however I can’t agree with what you said here:

    “don’t rush to get backlinks to show a search engine your site (SEs are so heavily spammed that it might make things even worse);

    If you don’t rush to get at least one backlink that the search engines can follow, they will not know that your site exists. Age is critical to a site, and the ageing can only start when you get at least one backlink into your site and it gets indexed. And unless they find your site for the first time, they wouldn’t know if your site has been there for a day or 2 years.

    I would put it this way: waste no time in getting a couple of backlinks for your site so it can get indexed, but then take your time in building links from there.

    Anyone who has a domain name they intend doing something with in the future should have it hosted and get it indexed. That way, if it takes them a year to use the domain, they can get off to a great start, already being out of the sandbox.



  • Mercy

    Good post Ann! I totally agree with you on “don’t submit your site to SEs”.

    Domain registration/choosing is also a imp part in launching a new site. It is better to go for short domain names which are easy to remember for your users. If your target market is global, go for a .com domain. If you are targeting a particular country or language, it is better to register a domain name in TLD of that country.

    To build trust with the search engines, you should build your incoming links and content at a regular pace. Keep your content unique and relevant to your products/services.

  • Glenn

    I am going through this process now, for the fifth or sixth time. I would agree with all of the above, except for the backlinks part.

    Interesting that Google’s Webmaster Central info runs behind reality — for example, after a week my site now is just getting traffic from Google SERPs but the data in Central say I’m nowhere — no links, no indexing, etc.

  • seo tips

    I agree. SEO takes time, dont rush things. Lets search engines do what they do, you focus on doing what you do, and we will focus on what we do,,,,,,SEO!

  • Chris

    Nice summary of the most important facts, thank you!

  • Nagy

    Good post Ann
    How many times google can ranking my site in top search results if i have every day a new content lick news websites?
    I think any SEO needs some times to get results but it will be bad for the sites which publish timely news

  • Chris Blackwell

    I agree with David DuVal and Ann. Start slow and don’t make any big changes off the start. Any large charges in the beginning could be a red flag for some SE.

  • Ken Jones

    Spot on as always Ann. Really like the advice about not rushing to get indexed.
    @James – I don’t think Ann’s suggesting that you don’t bother getting any backlinks at all. Just that it’s a much better strategy to build up a range of content that the engine can find through natural, gradual linking rather than trying to push a massive amount of links towards a brand new site with little or no content to work with. As the site grows, so will the links and you’re much less likely to set off any flags in the SE’s that way.

  • Ann Smarty

    @Glenn – with links, yes, Google tools seem to fall behind; with top search queries the data seem up-to-date.

    @James – my call was not to rush to get ‘many’ links; one link should be ok even at the start.

  • Brian

    Cool Post nice information about white hat technique.

  • http:.// Sheree Motiska

    Great post. You wouldn’t believe how many arguments I get into over some of these things with the people in my coaching classes.


  • Web Design UK

    Great post. A website is never finished.

    Focus on your target audience and the search engines will follow.