What's the best way to promote my site?

One of the big problems with site registration is that unless you actually visit all of the indexes, you can never be sure if they have actually listed you.

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Fortunately, since most of your hits will come from the top indexes and search engines, all you should really worry about is "Am I listed in the top sites?"; listings in the minor sites are pretty much "gravy" in my opinion; nice to have, but not crucial.

Therefore, here is my suggested strategy for registering your site:

1) Register with the Search Engines and Major Indexes

These two categories of sites are the most important to get listed in, so do them first.

2) Register with the General Indexes (and the other categories of indexes) as appropriate

It's nice to get into these sites, but not crucial. So as time permits, register with all the appropriate sites in these categories.

3) Anytime your site changes, re-submit to the Search Engines

Search Engines are the sites (like Excite, Lycos, etc) which have a "Spider" program that visits your site and indexes it. They don't mind if you resubmit to them over and over again, so you should do so every time your site changes significantly. Use the Search Engine Resubmit option to quickly do this.

4) Every couple of months, check the sites in the Major Indexes to see if they have listed you

If they have, great. If they haven't, resubmit to them. With really major indexes like Yahoo and LookSmart, I'd give them 3 months before resubmitting, and make some improvements on your site in the meantime.

Getting your site listed with the search engines and indexes is only part of a well-rounded promotional program. For more thoughts on other things to do, you may enjoy a short article I wrote entitled The 500 Sites Fallacy.

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