Categories: Crawling, indexing & ranking :

Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market?

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Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? dagger12 5/9/09 6:14 PM
I have done the following:

1. checked title & meta tags.
2. submitted url.
3. verified sitemap.
4. written keyword rich content.
5. got 2 good site related links to me.

Specific questions:
1. Do all the outgoing links on my site hurt my ranking?
2. Why hasn't google crawled my site lately?
3. Why am I not showing up for the non-competitive phrase "free things to do" when my entire site is built around this topic.
4. Same is with yahoo, what am i doing wrong? I have been all over the webmaster tool sections.

If someone could check out my site I would really appreciate it. Thanks!!!
http://www.freethingstodo.org/index.html
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? Autocrat 5/9/09 6:29 PM
Okay..... I'm really hoping you are not going to go defensive, turn narky or what ever.


But .... is it mre... or is it a site based on links to other sites?
A Direcotry?
As that's what it looks like.


For that to work - you generally have to invest a lot of time/effort and acquire alot of links to make it viable.

An alternative option is to have unqiue/original content, on the site itself.

.

Jus to make sure you are getting off on the right foot - click on my profile.
Click on the link to view the full profile.
Bunch on links on the top right.
Read those
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? dagger12 5/9/09 6:54 PM
Not defensive.. just in dire need of some advice... The site is kind of a directory but i have considered scrapping the links to other sites and just providing more specifics in the content. Would i be better off doing that? I will take your advice in the meantime and check the links and your profile. Thanks for your help!!!
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? ThisNewGuy 5/9/09 8:39 PM
1. Yes, outgoing links does hurt in a way that the crawler might leave your site prematurely. But it shouldn't hurt in a significant way. In other words, it does hurt, but very minimally.
2. Google takes a long time to get to every site that is submitted, especially if the site is relatively new. This is me talking on experience alone.
3 + 4. There may be a lot of things. One of the major thing is that you need to keep updating your content regularly with good content. Another thing is the organization of the code, the cleaner the better. After looking at your code, it's way too messy. Use external CSS and just call it in your header or something. And your website doesn't really have any content on the front page, which is ranked more importantly than other pages (maybe describe what the site is about and what its for). The content looks like just a bunch of random links slapped onto a boring page. Organize it. At least make it into a list that makes some sense.

My advice right now is to organize everything in some cohesive manner so that it's not just a bunch of random links in no order or grouping. Also, a couple of pictures will help to make it look a bit more professional. And move your ads somewhere else, ranking also depends on what the crawler sees first. Since the crawler reads your code like the browser (from top down), whatever your put on top should be more important and relevant to your site. And lastly, just wait a bit longer, it's extremely difficult to get good ranking on the first crawl, you need to update, better style, better organization before you can start competing for the top spot. And google the keyword you want and just see what the top ranking websites look like. Then think, "If I was google, would I list my site higher than these? Why or why not?" and improve from there.

Wish you the best of luck.
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? ThisNewGuy 5/9/09 8:41 PM
Oh, adding to what I said, since the crawler reads your code from top to bottom, all those br tags is being considered more important than the actual content. So in the crawler's eyes, your website is more about br tags than free things to do.
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? Phil Payne 5/9/09 11:17 PM
Jehosophat!

Some of the links on http://www.freethingstodo.org/online.html will keep you out of the index ofrever!
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? voicaemil 5/10/09 3:24 AM
Phil...if he puts that page nofollow and noindex, he should be ok, right? Plus if he "omits" to link it from any other page in the site creating a PR transfer.
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? Autocrat 5/10/09 8:48 AM
Okay - you want to become a resource for thing s to do.
THats fair enough.
And yes - plenty of sites that you could link to.

But the idea here is to get people to your site.... and keep them there (or at least, as long as possbe :D).

The problem with "direcotires" in general is that technically, they are the same thing as Gogle.
They are a way to find other sites.
Thats like picking up a menu, to decide what menu you want to order from (make sense?)

Not only does this tend to nark alot of visitors (they want to land at a destination, not have to change trains and go seomewhere else first!).
It also seems to rate low on Googles "worthiness" list.

.

So - with that in mind - what can you do to change things?

Well, for starters - I have to ask .... how much research have you done?
Did you check out competition?
Did you look and see if there was a market/need/desire for such a site/service?
Did you check and see what strengths/weaknesses are already out there?
Did you talk to anyone about things they need/want/desire from such a site?

Instant things to mind..... 
   Rate/Label things.
      Does it require preperation?
      Is it clean, messy etc.?
      Does it require special items?
      Does it require transport (if so - what sort of distance?  If applicable!)
      Is it for Kids, Adults, Elderly, Males, Females, Everyone etc.?
   Stuff like that can help readers get an idea of whats what .... and permit them to filter/sort according to taste.
   (Ideally, you would permit them to set multiple preferences etc.)

   Feedback/Reviews/Comments etc.
      Let users give ratings
      Let them leave comments/reviews
      Let people sort/filter based on experiences of others.


You could als odo a search here on things like
    Direcotries
    Hotels
    Travel
as those types of sites often get numerous suggestions on how to improve the sites "functionality" for users.

.

And yes, if you can generate unique/original/useful content on site, then that would be better for you.
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? Phil Payne 5/10/09 11:15 AM
> Phil...if he puts that page nofollow and noindex, he should be ok, right? Plus if he "omits" to link it from any other page in the site creating a PR transfer.

No, that will not help him at all.  He needs to delete the content, which he has done.
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? voicaemil 5/10/09 2:34 PM
10x phil
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? dagger12 5/10/09 6:45 PM
Wow, I will surely come back to google webmaster forum with other questions. Thanks for the excellent advice fellas! I will drop the links and write small articles on each item I have listed on freethingstodo.org. As for the research.... I am a complete newby here, so I recklessly took data from adwords keyword tool and wordtracker and believed it to be relatively accurate. Now I am concerned because google and wordtracker say that 2000 people per day do a broad search for "free things to do" but other tools say something like 85 searches. I may have messed up here. But hey, its fun and I'm learning a ton of new stuff. Any advice on how accurate adword tool and wordtracker is would be even better than the info you all have given me so far. !!! Thanks fellas!!
Re: Why am I not ranking in a totally non competitive market? dagger12 5/10/09 6:59 PM
oh yeah, there is virtually no competition for this exact phrase... http://www.freethingstodo.org/  Thanks again!!