You have a brand-new commercial real estate website! The website looks amazing, has animations, streaming video, calls-to-action, blog and everything you’ve heard that is necessary to get your brand recognized online. Day by day you watch your traffic count and tell yourself, “it’s brand new, I need to give it time”. Days turn to weeks, weeks turn to months and you’re upset, “There 3 billion people online! Why aren’t any on my website?!”
The internet has a lot of noise. 51 million new websites go up each year (that’s 140,000 per day!). How the heck is Google supposed to see your website? Here’s a few EASY ways to get your commercial real estate website indexed by Google.
1) Submit your website to Google. Most website designers won’t do this for you (I do this for you, btw) so you’ll need to submit the site to Google yourself. Search engines use “crawlers” to capture webpages, but if they’re unaware your website exists, they won’t try “EdsCRE.com” randomly. To get those crawlers to pay attention, you’ll need to send Google a request to crawl your website.
Don’t worry, it’s quick and easy, and will take you about 5-minutes to submit.
- Google: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/submit-url?pli=1
- Yahoo: http://search.yahoo.com/info/submit.html
- Microsoft (Bing): http://search.live.com/docs/submit.aspx
You won’t need to enter every page, just your home page. The search engines will crawl each page and take over from there!
2) Add an XML sitemap. Your eyes probably glazed over a bit and the urge to scroll to number 3 is becoming overwhelming, but hear me out! A sitemap helps crawlers figure out what exactly is on each page and the structure of your website. Crawlers will use an algorithm to figure out your content, which may turn into something quite strange.
Making a sitemap is quick with XML Sitemaps online generator. It will map out a website under 500 pages for free. Type in your URL and hit “Start”. Save the .xml and submit this to Google’s Webmaster tools.
3) Submit articles to Reddit and Digg. Submitting blog articles to social media services like Reddit, Digg, or other large social news websites can get your URL picked up very quickly. Typically, an article posted on a news site will appear after only a day or two.
When using article submission, your URL will only stay Google’s top rank for a few days or a week. This makes sense, as big farms will only push timely content. If your article becomes popular and has shares, you may see it stick to page one for a few months.
4) Backlinking. Today, the easiest way to gain ranks is by getting industry-related websites to link to yours. Meaning, getting a relevant website to place a link to your website. You can do this by writing guest blogs, buying ads, or posting comments on top-industry websites. The more websites linked to yours, bumps up your “trustworthy” score.
Don’t bother buying a “100 backlinks for $15!” deal. In a time not long ago, Google went on a rampage punishing sites that have spam-backlinks, dropping their rankings dramatically. Seeing an opportunity, criminal geniuses bought thousands of spam-backlinks for their competition’s websites. Today, spam-backlinks are not counted for or against your website, making them a waste of money. Creating backlinks individually is the only way you can rank in this manner.
5) Social media. “But Brandy, I hate social media!” I hate it too! But I have a feeling social media will be the new SEO. In fact, most of us SEO nerds are scrambling for social media before Google adds number of social media platform associations, number of followers, shares, likes, etc. to its algorithm. At the time I’m writing this article, social media is not counted on Google’s algorithm, but Bing is beginning to use “social signals” in their rankings. Google will likely follow suit.
Take on the social media beast now before SEO rankings change their strategies. It’ll happen sooner than later.