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Your search engine ranking is an indication of how your website compares to others similar to yours. Search engine rankings are important because they determine your location in the list displayed by a search engine when a potential visitor has typed in a keyword while doing a search.

In order to improve your search engine ranking you need to begin at the top of your page by using key words that will probably be used by visitors when searching for content similar to that contained within your site. Google has a search engine ranking service that will help you develop a list of these key words:

You may not be able to access this service without signing up for an account with Google:

The Key-Word tool will supply you with the key words from the Google database that people have used when searching for information about your product. For instance, if you are selling pencils you would enter something like “Pencils for sale” or “Buying pencils online.” Google will then supply you with the phrases and words folks have used when searching for pencils.

You should then try to include as many of the resulting words and phrases in the first paragraph or two of your page.

At you will find a list of all of the great tools and tutorials that Google offers to webmasters. You should try to use as many of these suggestions as possible to obtain the highest rating on their directory.

Once you have your pages written according to the instructions given above you will want to invite Google to crawl your website. The best way to do this is to create your sitemap (sitemap.xml). There is a great online tool to create this sitemap for you:

Once you have your sitemap saved you will need to upload it to the root directory of your web site. Once you have done that you will want to sign in to Google's Webmaster Tools and follow the instructions for submitting your sitemap. A couple of hours after submitting your sitemap you should log in to see if it has been accepted or if there are errors. If there are errors just fix them and re-submit.

You will also want to simply submit your site to be added to the Google database:

Finally, it is very helpful to be able to count the page hits for each page on your site. Take time each day to record this information in your spreadsheet. Over a period of time you will be able to determine a trend and how changes you make can affect this trend.

Don't expect instant success with all of the above suggestions. was originally started in 1996 and has gradually grown in size as well as recognition by the various search engines.