Okay, I start this blog entry with a confession. I have been blogging here for almost a year. I check out my site traffic numbers a few times a month. I even have people randomly email me and tell me they like this blog. So I was more than shocked to discover last week that my blog is not being indexed by the major search engines. How could I have gone so long without even realizing it?
So the best piece of advice I have for any author who’s blogging is this: Make sure your blog is showing up on Google, Yahoo and Bing. Not your website; your blog. Because my site has been placing wonderfully for months. But my blog was nowhere to be found.
Start by searching for some of your blog entry titles on those search engines. Then try your name and the word “blog.” If your blog or blog entries are not showing up anywhere on the results page, it’s possible the search engines don’t know you even exist. Which, as I’ve been beating myself up over for the last five days, can cost you a lot of site traffic.
So how do you get your blog listed on the major search engines? Here are some ideas I collected in the hours upon hours I spent working on this …
- Check your privacy settings. After some sage advice from my WordPress guru, I think this was the source of my problem. In WordPress blogs, there’s a feature called “Privacy” in the “Settings” box on the left hand side of your blog admin. Go in there and check what the settings are. Mine actually said that my blog should be available to readers, but not to the search engines. Why that would be, I have no idea. But I recommend everyone check on theirs and make sure their settings aren’t blocking the search engines from viewing their entries.
- Set up links to your blog. Go to other websites or blogs in a similar genre and start posting comments. Include links to your blog (or specific blog entries) there. That will get your domain out there to the search engines.
- Get your blog listed on blog communities, like MyBlogLog, BlogCatalog, Blogged and NetworkedBlogs
- Submit your blog through Google’s Webmaster tools section. In the “Add new site” section, enter the full URL of your blog. Google will usually index your blog on its next crawl.
Now, even after you do all this, it can take anywhere up to a month before it’s fully indexed. But hopefully these steps will help get your author blog out there to the general public.
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