Marketing your art

Preparing for search engine submission

A quick summary of the process of preparing for search engine submission

Search engine submission is the process of making your site known to Google, Yahoo and other search engines. Making the search engines aware of your site is a good way of getting people to find your site. In this process you will have control over the way your site is presented to the search engines, but you cannot dictate to them thou shalt place my site at the top of the list, so the recommended approach is to make your best effort and then allow the process to work.

There are a variety of methods for search engines to get information about your site. They send out spiders (a computerized visitor) to compile the content of sites automatically. Some also send a human to confirm the existence and content of your site. There are also methods for reporting your site to search engines.

From the perspective of someone using a search engine to find a site, they all function same, but each has its own method of determining which sites to present and in which order.
There are some things that need to be done prior to submitting your site. The first is the site must be available at the domain you intend to use. Do not submit a site that is at: This is a temporary location for your site and will eventually not exist.

Since search engines actually visit the site, the site should also be in good order i.e. you have uploaded images and text for visitors to see. You must also be prepared for the computerized visitors to your site which look at the following items: The domain name, the title of your site, the description, keywords, and the text on the first page of the site. Each search engine gives various weights to each of these items, but of these three items the greatest weight tends to be given to the title, followed by the description.

In the process of making choices about what to include in the title, keywords and description of your site, give some thought to what someone might type in a search engine when looking for a site such as yours. You will want to have your name or the name of your studio in all three places, but you should also think about specific things about your work that makes it stand out. Words like “distinctive” or “high end” are of little value because they are too general, but words like “salt fired” or “Kalamazoo” are useful in that they narrow the focus.
The words that you think are best at describing what you do should appear in three places: the title, keywords and the description. You may think hmm.. If these key words are so important, I should really lard it up... WATERCOLOR! WATERCOLOR! WATERCOLOR!, The truth is that if you start repeating yourself, search engines will move your site lower on the list rather than higher.

When preparing these keywords you are not the only artist who does what you do, so your chances of getting to the top of general list of painters is not that great, but if someone is doing a focused search your chances are much better.

Your title should be short and to the point. Something like a headline that makes people want to see more. The title will actually appear in the search engine listing for your site. So give some thought to what would make people want to click to go to your site. As mentioned above it is very helpful to weave some keywords into the text of your title, just don’t sacrifice readability to do so.

The description is another text that might end up in the search engine’s listing of your site. This text can be a little longer than the title, but not more than 250 characters and it is possible if the search engine listing shows the description it will be cut off before the end. Since the description is something that will possibly be read as visitors decide weather to enter your site, it should be informative as to what visitors will encounter at your site. As with the title, the description should also weave in some keywords, but not at the expense of readability.

In addition to the description, keywords and title. Search engines will also scan the first page for text and often use that to look for key words for categorizing the site. FineArtPost automatically puts three random images on the first page. This is great for humans, but computerized visitors don't get much out of it. To add some text to the first page of the site follow this link. It is probably best to have some sort of self introduction which is descriptive of the content of the site.

Throughout this article I have mentioned keywords, In some contexts I have meant the search terms entered by visitors looking for sites, In other instances I have meant a specific text like the title and description which can be edited for your site. Like the description, keywords are a part of your site that are hidden from visitors, but visible to computerized viewers of your site. Keywords are simply a list of terms that are descriptive of what you do. In this case you are creating a list and readability is not a factor. Keywords have the less impact compared to the title or description and text on the first page. Like the description, 250 characters is enough.







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