The position of your website in the hits returned by the search engines will depend on the search you make, and on the extent to which the search is related to the website content. That positioning does not only depend on how important your website is for the search engines, because the importance of the rest of the websites located in the same sphere as yours also exerts an influence.
There could be two reasons why you do not see your website in the search hits: the search engines do not recognise your website, or your website has a poor position in the searches run and that is why it does not appear among the first hits.
To find out whether the search engines recognise your website, you can run the “site:yourdomain.eus” search in Google (substituting yourdomain.eus for the domain name of your website). That search will return the pages that the search engines recognise from your website. If the search does not return any hits, it is because the search engines do not recognise your website. On the other hand, if the number of pages appearing in the hits is considerably lower than the number that your website has, this could indicate a problem.
Various things can be done to improve the website’s positioning, because a single solution will not be enough to improve all the situations. To start with, there are some criteria that the website needs to meet and which help to improve positioning. Here are some of them:
- The website has to have a comprehensible structure, and the links displayed have to describe the content clearly. For example, in our website the English version of the table providing the registrars prices can be found at www.domeinuak.eus/en/register/pricing-table/.
- Search engines penalise duplicated content, so try to have original content and insofar as it is possible, do not repeat content on different pages of the website. In addition, it is advisable for each page to have a minimum content of about 300 words (as long as it makes sense to do so).
- So it is a good idea for there to be links that lead to your website, so try to add your website links to the social networks, the websites of your suppliers/customers and other sites relating to your activity. However, it is not something that needs to be forced and adding these links to these websites needs to be done sensibly.
Apart from the website structure, there are several other things that need to be looked at:
- The time that the domain name has been up and running. If you have recently changed your website to the .EUS domain or the website is a new one, it is unlikely that it will appear in hits from the start. As the days pass the search engines will get to know your website and you will have a greater presence in the searches.
- If you have changed the domain name of the website, visitors to the old address will automatically be redirected to the corresponding page under the new address. That redirect should be of the 301 type. You can do this via your registrar’s management console, or else you will be able to do it via the server in which your website is located.
- Register with the Google Webmaster Tools service to add your domain there. That will let Google know about your domain and will make suggestions on how to improve its positioning. All the other search engines, such as Bing, have similar services, too.
- To help the search engines understand your website structure more easily, it is very helpful to make the website’s sitemap.xml file public, and also to inform the search engines about this by using Google Webmaster Tools or similar services.
- Make sure you haven’t got a robots.txt file on your website, because if you have it will prevent the search engines from analysing your website.
If you follow these instructions your website will appear in the search hits more easily and this will gradually improve. The improvement in the hits will be more obvious depending on the hits in which you want to be better positioned. In any case, it is important to make the website content relevant, to work on it diligently and update it frequently, because that way the search engines will give it a higher rating.