One of the things people ask about new websites is, “How fast will I get to the top of Google?”
The answer to this generally has been, assuming that the keyword we’re discussing is one for which they should rank, “Anywhere from 1.5 days to 5 months, depending.”
As with all SEO questions, it depends on a lot of factors over which I don’t usually have control. And of course I’m not adjusting for variables when I work on clients’ websites; I’m doing my darnedest to get their sites to the top of Google.
Now I’m running my little lab experiment, though, with the educational site FreshPlans at www.myfreshplans.com. I did nothing for one week to encourage the search engines to notice my newly-launched site, apart from adding good content daily. I mentioned it here and once on Twitter, and that was about it. 32 people came to visit, some more than once. 24 of those people clicked through the Amazon affiliate ads.
After one week, the new website had climbed in rankings, hitting #1 at Google for the term in the URL, “My Fresh Plans,” and #4 for “Fresh Plans,” after starting at #15.
After a week, I made a Facebook page for the site and submitted it to the major search engines (Google, Yahoo, and Bing), as well as dropping a handful of links at logical places. Normally, I would do that immediately for a new site. However, I wanted to see what would just naturally take place without any real assistance. I plan to give it another week before doing any serious linkbuilding.
Today, one day after submitting the site to the main search engines, the placements at Google for the name of the site have not changed. However, it’s now #1 for “Big Turnip lesson plans,” and #3 for the coveted “Cookie Geography.”
No, of course those aren’t important keywords. But it shows that Google has indexed the inner pages of the site very quickly. And in fact, the analytics for the site show the change. The previous day, the only keywords bringing visitors were “Fresh Plans” and “myfreshplans.” In the hours between when I submitted the site yesterday and midnight, seven new keywords were used to find the site: “Alice in Wonderland lesson plans,” “fungi lesson plans,” and “what are some good art projects for earth day?” among them.
19 visitors dropped by, almost half again as many as the previous day’s 13 visitors. However, the day before that had brought 10, double the preceding day’s 5.
The lesson here? It’s worth mentioning your site to the search engines. Submit it as soon as you launch. Here are the addresses: Yahoo! Google Bing DMOZ
Don’t submit it repeatedly. Don’t pay someone to submit it to “the top 1000 search engines.” Don’t check your rankings every day unless you’re doing an experiment, as I am. Not that there’s anything dangerous about doing any of these things (except repeated submission to DMOZ, which, rumor has it, causes the humans there to get ticked off and refuse to include your site at all); they’re just a waste of your time.
Good looking site!