Placement and Submission
"Alliances: Databases being Accessed by
Other Search Engines for Results"
Where's the Most Traffic Coming From?
Where's the traffic coming from? Excite, Yahoo, Lycos, InfoSeek and AltaVista listings
used to be a good start. Increasing traffic to your web site used to be
easier when you knew which search
engines get the most traffic.
have attempted to rank the search engines and directories using alliances
(one search engine accessing the database of another for results) and the
prominence of the alliance search engines listings at each site. This will be a key to
determining which of the
search engines or directories will improve traffic to your web site the most.
While I was doing this research I was also doing the research I do for
the secrets section of the the search
engine placement index. Much of the information for optimization has not
changed since my last major update.
What has changed is the ease to do it! All of the major search engines
are using some sort of directory or site review for the listings at the top
of the list. They may come from other indexes like the ODP, Direct Hit
or from reviews for channels within the engine.
This makes the info below in
"Other Databases Accessed" of special importance because it is
often positions on these that really affects "exposure on the site".
Top 30 may not be as important as getting this prominent exposure.
Atlanta-based RelevantKnowledge announced the results of a Study
monitored and estimated the usage patterns of Web users at home, at work and at college.
RelevantKnowledge claims the study is far more accurate than previous studies since it
monitored usage in all three demographic areas.
The results below leave out properties which are not really useful in
developing a search engine strategy. The sites below are from the U.S. study. You may be interested in reports for other countries. Take
this link to see
|Unique Visitors (000)
Other Databases Accessed
and ODP are prominent Inktomi does have a less prominent role *1
||Inktomi, LookSmart, Direct Hit *3
||ODP and Direct hit *4
||LookSmart, on the Inktomi paid
service page they list excite as using them *5
||Go Network (formerly InfoSeek)
||Inktomi for Sprinks *6
||LookSmart to lesser extent Ask
||Meta Crawler Engine *8
||Direct Hit *9
||Paid listings and secondary results
*- denotes traffic includes all properties in the network. For example
Microsoft would include, Microsoft.com, MSN.com
*1- 3 sponsored links at the top of listings which are generally the
most expensive keyword purchases on GOTO. Uses the ODP
*2- Google is used for secondary searches which means a search did not find results in the
*3- Most popular sites list is generated by direct
hit. Inktomi have provided results in the past and still seems to be
although I've heard they were no longer involved the submission page did
seem to suggest they are still using them. LookSmart index is used for
the directory and secondary results.
*4- Direct hit is especially important on
Hotbot. See the update of the secrets index for
more info on Lycos properties.
*5- LookSmart index however I was not able to
ascertain how it affected placement preliminary indications are it really
doesn't matter other than for directory listings. Inktomi listings weren't
readily distinguishable either.
*6- Inktomi is used by many engines such as
Snap. It has been used by Yahoo, MSN and other major engines in the past
however it is a search technology and is being dropped by many in favor of
directories such as Looksmart and the ODP. In order to get into Inktomi you
submit to a participating site like Snap or they have a paid service. I
could not find a means of adding your site on the about.com site.
*7- LookSmart index however I was not able to
ascertain how it affected placement. In the past it has boosted relevancy
however AV is always a moving target and at present it looks like this has
*8- MetaCrawler searches:
and then uses an algorhythm to rank the sites.
*9- Ask Jeeves uses direct hit to some
Search Engine Alliance Summary
Other Facts from RelevantKnowledge
Strategies are part of a plan in this case the plan is for
submitting a site. What we have learned so far is that the sites above get the
most traffic and some use other indexes in their results. If you go to the "Top 10 Portals in July 2000 According to Reach %"
on the RelevantKnowledge site you get a little more useful data.
1-7 were in order Yahoo, MSN, AOL, Lycos, GO, Netscape,
Note that of these two are default search sites for the major
browsers, notably Netscape and MSIE. For this reason I have the following
information on search in browsers.
Netscape uses primarily the ODP and Google for default searches but
as in the past does offer many of the engines in the list above. Note that MSIE
also uses REALNAMES. More importantly the Netscape portal and smart
browsing features use Google and ODP.
You may want to add these 3 to the mix which weren't in the
top sites but also have search as features of the Portal.
Other Databases Accessed
||Inktomi powers search, Top 10 comes from direct hit,
directory uses Looksmart, internet keywords are from RealNames.
||ODP for directory and direct hit for
popular and for obscure listings it's using GOTO.com
||Xoom .com (nbcI)
||Inktomi for search the directory is
comprised of member submitted sites.
Now we've added the top portals lets see exactly what is
happening in the search
services data. Note 1-5 were AltaVista, LookSmart, Ask Jeeves, GOTO and
|Unique Visitors (000)
Other Databases Accessed
||is part of infospace network
||is part of Yahoo
||AltaVista search is prominent
||search uses GOTO
Putting It All Together for a Top Ten
Search Engine/Directory Submissions List!
First off lets start by picking the Top places to be listed to
provide a strategy for improving exposure. Why? Well in my plan
I separate engines/directories which can be manipulated from those that can't
be. Almost all of the top 10 can't be easily manipulated however they do
influence overall exposure.
The top 10 are sites whose databases are being accessed by
other sites and placed in prominent or prime positions. This is important
because it is the prominence or position of the results which makes them so
#1- ODP (Open Directory
Project dmoz.org) it is used prominently
by 2 0f the top five sites for traffic, 4 of the top 10 portals directory
listings, and by several other directories. Since anyone can use the database
of reviewed sites free of charge and you can only list your site once, spend
some time when submitting here! It will only grow in importance. You may also
want to spend the time submitting to other categories. Read the guidelines
for submission carefully, this is why most sites don't get listed.
#2- Yahoo for all the same
reasons as it has been number 1 for years. It drops in my view because ODP has
far more potential for growth of its exposure. Yahoo is tied to Internet Demographics. I
have seen reports that 45% or more of all traffic from search sites comes from
Yahoo. I have been collecting some data on my server and in my case it is
significantly higher than 45%. However much of that seems to be tied to my
prominent positions on Google for search engine optimization and webmaster
#3- MSN is the default
search and default home page (until it is changed by the user) for the browser
with the greatest market share. At present
submitting here gets you in Inktomi as well which is used by several of the
other sites mentioned above. MSN.com is like AOL and Excite@home in that it is a network which
provides members with access to the internet. Many are most likely using it as
a default home page in the browser.
#4- Google is the search
service for Yahoo when there are no directory listings. It is also the default
search service for Netscape browser (smart browsing) and Portal and is used by
infospace properties in its meta searches. It also placed number 5 in the
search service study.
This engine is quickly becoming the engine of choice for
internet savvy individuals. It is also highly regarded among members of the
search community because of the quality of the index. The added bonus is to
some extent it can be manipulated but not in the usual manner.
#5- Inktomi because it
supplies main or secondary results for many of the top sites in all the
studies. It now is offering a paid service. You get into their engine by submitting to the sites that they provide
results for. For example MSN.com or snap.
#6- Ask Jeeves was number
3 on the search services list and is used by a few of the properties above
such as AltaVista. This is also a trend I see. Search engines have pretty well
given up on spidering to find the "best of breed' and are looking for services like this one to improve
#7- Direct Hit because it
is used prominently on many of the properties above and was number 7 in search
sites study. Most important is the prominence factor and how it is used.
Usually it is used with a heading such as "most popular sites" and
is, in most cases, before the actual results for the search. On HotBOt it
literally makes up the first ten listings on many searches.
#8- AltaVista because
although down on the traffic side most of its traffic is search related. All
of the others traffic numbers are higher because a large part of their traffic
is to other properties that aren't search related. It is also easily
#9- GOTO.com a paid
listings site which is used by some of the properties mentioned. Note that it
has a prominent place on the AOL results page. I see this as a real trend as
far as engines go almost all are trying to find a way to get paid for
submissions or are willing to give prominent positions in the results for
cash. GOTO was number 4 for search services. It also comprises almost all the
results for the #10 portal Clickheretofind.com.
#10- Lycos Network because it is
so high in the traffic study and includes some very good properties such as
Tripod, Angelfire, HotBot, Webmonkey and wired.com to name a few. Tripod and Angelfire feature Lycos search. Wired news features HotBot search.
I have not listed LookSmart in the top 10 though according to
them their database is used by more than any of the above. I don't believe
they are as well represented as they would have you believe. They do get
a lot of unique visits as illustrated by its number 2 position in the search
services study. However, this list is about maximizing exposure.
Although LookSmart has a presence on a large number of the
sites in the RelevantKnowledge studies it is by no means prominent and has little or no
affect on top 30 results for the
best keywords, AltaVista being the loan case where it is possibly used
prominently. I looked closely at all the sites they are on and in most cases
the listings are no where near as prominent as ODP, Google or Direct Hit on
the sites using these services. They provide mostly secondary or directory results.
Purchasing a keyword at RealNames.com
may also be a good idea it is used in the MSIE browser and sites
<snip from RealNames>
Google, and iWon.
When you enter an Internet Keyword, they simply look for the Internet Keyword
symbol displayed prominently in the search results. To see a full list of
navigation partners, Click
Well that's ten! What is significant is that a year ago over
half would not have made the list! Search engines are using these types of
databases to make it harder to manipulate them. The ten sites listed here are
now even more important than what used to be referred to as majors:
Excite is a top site traffic wise because of its
partnership with @home. Both of the indexes it used to power are almost
entirely off the radar. When @home was installed for me the default home
page was Excite @home. With millions of customers I would say this could
be why it has such big numbers. I am hoping that there are reps from both
Excite and Go at the upcoming search seminar so I can maybe get a better
idea of the actual % of traffic is search related. Due to its'
traffic portal reach and the fact you can still manipulate it easily it
would be where i would spend a considerable amount of my optimization
Go (formerly Infoseek) gets a lot of the traffic from the Disney properties.
The actual searching going on there would be significantly lower than the
figures in the study. Note it was nowhere to be found on the search
WebCrawler (see below)
Lead Times for Listings At the Major Search Engines:
Of note here is that recent information has declared
WebCrawler dead! It no longer is spidering and receives little traffic. I used
to keep track of lead times but it is becoming harder and harder to find
The paid submissions do result in quicker listings and I would
say generally the info on the sites you're submitting to are using optimistic
response times. Generally add at least a week and quite possibly more.
Related Articles & Information
secrets | search
engine placement index