Search Engines and Directory Submissions – The Basics By Richard Hoy

People expend lots of energy and discussion on getting listed in search engines. There are companies that promise all sorts of amazing results if you just pay them a fee to perform their often questionable tactics. And people invest inordinate amounts of time fretting over where they are in the search results.

Truth is, there’s really only a few things you need to know about search engine and directory submissions.


Often people call everything a “search engine”. But that is technically incorrect.

There are two kinds of sites people use for finding things – search engines and directories. It is important to understand the distinction because they each require a different tactic to get listed properly.

A search engine takes the URL you submit and sends a piece of software called a spider out to it. The spider builds information about your site based on the page content. An example of a search engine is Google. So the important point here is: how your site pages appear in a search engine is entirely dependent on the content the spider finds on your pages.

A directory, on the other hand, is a manually compiled and organized list of links. When you submit your information to a directory, you give the directory the description and keywords it should use and that is what it uses to create a description of the page. An example of a directory is Yahoo!. The important point here is: how you appear in a directory is entirely dependent on what you put in the form when you register the site.

The major Internet search/directory sites (Yahoo, Google) are hybrid sites. They incorporate aspects of both search engines and directories.


The goal of search engines and directories is not helping people find web sites. The goal of search engines and directories is to help people find content relevant to the terms on which they search.

That statement right there should clarify a lot. Search engines and directories love good content. They hate tricks that game the system. And they actively look for, and ban, sites engaging in questionable practices.

Relevant and frequently updated content is the only sure strategy to produce results with search engines and directories.


1.) There are only three major search hybrids nowadays worth the botherGoogle, Yahoo and MSN.

2.) Aside from creating good content that people will read and link to, and making sure your site is reachable by these engine