In the huge cyber world of blogging, getting noticed and adding traffic to your site may seem like a daunting and reward-less process. Fortunately, Google has made it a lot easier for bloggers to get their name out there and be ranked high on the Google search engine. Within 24 hours, you can get your blog indexed by Google so that certain key words will pull up your blog up first. As long as you have a well-planned and detailed strategy, these efforts will not be wasted. After you create your blog, you can follow these simple steps to have your website show up in search results within a day.
1: Submit your blog to Google
Google will need to have your blog submitted with proper verification before it can be indexed. One popular platform is blogger.com, which, as it just so happens, is a seamless transfer of information since it uses your Gmail account. Blogger.com and others like it tend to be free, while self-hosted blogging platforms might require you to pay some money to be indexed and require you to do it yourself. Once submitted, the Google webmasters will verify that you are the owner of the blog.
Step 1: Go to google.com/webmasters. Sign in using your Google Account or create an account if you don’t have one already.
Step 2: Add your blog site by clicking the “Add a site” button. Then type in the domain name you wish to add, and click “Continue”.
Step 3: Once added, you will need to verify that you own this site. This can be done by one of two ways, Meta Tag or Upload a HTML file to your blog. The Meta Tag way is slightly easier.
Step 4: Meta Tag verification. This method requires you to add a piece of code to your header.php file. Copy the Meta Tag code Google has asked you to copy to your blog site.
Step 5: In your WordPress dashboard go to “Appearance”, then “Editor” using the menu tabs on the left hand side. Then click on Header (header.php) on the right hand side to open up the header template. Find the tag highlighted, and BELOW it “paste” in the verification Meta tag Google has given you.
Step 6: Then scroll down and click on “Update File”
Step 7: Go back to the Google Webmasters Tool website and click “Verify” and Google will confirm that you own the site.
Step 8: After verifying, Google will display a confirmation page.
2: Submit your blog Sitemap to Google
If you are using WordPress, install the Google XML sitemap plugin that creates a sitemap of your blog that search engines can read.
You now want to add your blog’s sitemap. This is how:
Step 1: From within the Google Webmaster tools website, click on the domain name you have just added and it will open up a Dashboard for your site. On the left hand side menu, click on “Site Configuration” and then “Sitemaps”.
Step 2: Click “Submit a Sitemap” and enter the name of your sitemap. It should be sitemap.xml
It will take a few hours for the sitemaps to be analyzed and added. Then you can return here and make sure there are no errors, see how many URLs are being indexed and the time that Google last visited you. Even without the sitemap, you will begin to get a list of the top search queries that your site is being found for, incoming links to your site, and the keywords that Google thinks your site is optimized for. By verifying your site and adding your blog’s sitemap, Google is notified that your blog needs to be indexed.
3: Use social bookmarking to generate links right away
It’s time to start marketing your blog everywhere. Since the Internet is endless, the amount of traffic you generate can be endless as well. Social bookmarking websites like Twitter, StumbleUpon, Digg, Yahoo Buzz have thousands of inbound links and monthly visitors coming in. The number of link backs you get will be surprising. Word of mouth also helps, so make sure you let your network of family, friends, and colleagues know to ‘favorite’ your blog.
4: Get posting on forums
Marketing your blog is time consuming but rewarding if done right. Much like business in the non-Internet world, you have to target a specific demographic that will care about the things you write. If you have a travel blog, you might want to become active on travel forums and post shameless plugs for yourself without spamming in any way. When you have your blog link in your forum signature, people are more likely to click on it as you post comments rather than when you actively try to force the link on them.
5: Install SEO plug-ins for your blog
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is necessary for generating and maintaining traffic to your blog. Without it, the great content on your website could be a wasted effort. Some blogs come with an SEO pack such as WordPress who lets you download it for free, if you’re not getting as much traffic as you expected. You will improve both the volume and quality of traffic to your blog as SEO targets various kinds of searches including images, local, video, and industry-specific search engines.
These five steps will help you optimize your blog and be indexed by Google in no time. Remember, the hardest work is in the beginning. Once you have laid the foundation for generating traffic to your blog, it will be easier in the future to maintain it.