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San Clemente Journal

Search Engines - Just "Google it"

May 01, 2008 09:51PM ● Published by Don Kindred

by Roby LaPorte

Google … just about the most popular word on the Internet these days … no, in the world, I’d have to say. Whatever you need, want, or want to do, you ‘Google it’! Names, addresses, phone numbers, persons, places or things, you Google it and Google answers with many options … and in a split second! It is the most extensive means of gathering information that has ever existed, surpassing all its search engine competition.

So much more than just a search engine, the amount of software services Google provides for us Internet junkies is staggering. Just go to Google.com and click on ‘more’ and there you have huge lists of great stuff you can use everyday to make your life a little easier, and lots more fun. One of my favorite little pieces of software that can be downloaded absolutely free is ‘Earth’, a satellite view of the entire planet. You can fly yourself to anywhere in the world. I like to fly into Yosemite Valley and look up at Half Dome, or go to Paris and check out the Eiffel Tower, then to the Pyramids and back to my own hometown. 

Endless amounts of services and pertinent information are served up by search engines in nano-seconds. While they provide a major service, as a website owner you may wonder how to get to the top of the search engine results pages for a particular keyword that represents your business. This is a most significant question these days, and one being asked by a substantial number of concerned business owners. While there are various types of websites, if you are a business owner using your site for marketing purposes, you want to get on that sacred first page of results as quickly as possible.

There are a great many ways to get yourself better organic search results, (organic being the ones that come up when you search with a keyword). One of the ways many people are getting to the top of the first results page is by paying for it through a ‘pay-per-click’ campaign, a method in which you bid on an amount you are willing to pay for a search keyword. When someone searches with that keyword and clicks on your link, they go straight to your site and it is then that you get charged for it. 

Or, because most people don’t want to avail themselves of the ‘pay-per-click’ option, the next best thing they can do is optimize their site for better organic search results. This can be highly technical since search engine criteria are constantly changing. But if you do your homework, there’s lots of websites that offer advice in this area. 

A great many people, who rely on their website for their primary marketing tool, look into companies that do SEO (Search Engine Optimization). There are quite a large number of SEO firms out there, but beware, they can be quite expensive, and if they are not up-to-date with their efforts, may foster ill effects. However, there are really good SEO firms available that have great success in driving additional traffic to websites.

Even with the best optimization and good traffic coming to your site, there is still more to utilizing the Internet than that. Many people are shopping around on the net and choosing who they want to work with by what they see when they get to the site. If your site looks out-of-date and unprofessional, that’s what will determine their decision to go with you or not. Ultimately, your goal should be to do your SEO homework, and have a graphically appealing website that is easy to navigate, very inviting and professional looking. Then when someone is ‘Googleing’ for you, they will find you and decide to work with you. b
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