Saturday

Four Reasons Why The
Smaller Search Engines Matter



These days, all search engine optimization gurus only seem to talk about
Google, as if Google was the only search engine on the Internet.
Of course, we all know that there really are hundreds of search engines and
directories available to us, and we know that some of the smaller search
engines serve a very tïght niche of users.

Honestly, I can understand why there is a lot of press on Google, because
after all, granddaddy Google is the biggest of the big. We know that
millïons of people use Google daily for their search activities, and we know
that our websites receive a lot of traffïc from Google.

There are actually four reasons why you would want to extend your search
engine marketing activities beyond Google. I will discuss each of those
reasons here:

Reason #1: Targeted Traffïc

Niche content search engines can be a very powerful force in your marketing
arsenal.

For example, suppose you have a website dedicated to helping sell real
estate. Does it make better sense to list a house for sale in Google or in
one of the many real estate search engines?

Let's face facts. When we look for tightly focused content such as real
estate listings, we generally seek out a search engine that will serve our
search the best. When searching for a new home, an individual may begin his
or her search at Google to find the real estate search engines, but once the
niche search engine has been found, there is no need or desire to return to
granddaddy Google. The real estate search engine will allow the individual
to search through cities and neighborhoods, prices, features and pictures,
to find just the house they feel might strike their fancy.

Even in the game of Internet marketing, a niche content search engine or
directory can be a very powerful addition to your marketing portfolio. It is
only a matter of searching out and locating the niche content search engine
or directory that serves your particular niche the best.


Reason #2: Costs Management

The Big Three have each developed their own pay-per-click search models.
And, because they are the Big Three search engines, they can also afford to
charge advertising rates that permit them to be among the most profitable
enterprises on the Internet.

The perception of pay-per-click pricing at the Big Three is that the little
guy can afford to advertise with them. But with every Internet marketer on
the web trying to compete for Big Three search traffïc, their five cents
per-click easily increases to sixty cents per-click, and in some industries,
it can climb to five or fifty dollars per-click.

The pay-per-click "auction mentality" really kicks into hyper-overdrive in
some industries. And the Big Three eat it up, as do their stockholders. Each
day, they dance their way to the bank with your monëy in tow.

The smaller niche search engines may not serve as much traffïc, but they
definitely allow you to reach more people for the same monëy. You can reach
people who are more inclined to buy your goods and services, because they
were searching on a niche website, and you can get their traffïc for a lot
less monëy than it would cost you to get the same prospect from any of the
Big Three search engines.

Reason #3: Linking for Google Placement

For those of you who are still involved in the Google PageRank chase, the
smaller search directories can be counted on as a really valuable asset in
your linking portfolio.

Many of the smaller search directories carry some pretty decent PageRank
with them.

For example:

a.. Blog-Search.com carries a PR6.
b.. Search66.com carries a PR6.
c.. GoArticles.com carries a PR6.
d.. SearchWarp.com carries a PR5.
e.. SitesOnDisplay.com carries a PR5.
f.. SearchRamp.com carries a PR5.
g.. MixCat.com carries a PR5.
h.. TorontoMalls.com carries a PR5.
i.. OutdoorHits.com carries a PR4.
j.. FindYourForum.com carries a PR4.

As you are already aware, the PageRank of a website that is pointing to your
website plays a role in determining the value of your own website in the
Google PageRank calculations, thereby increasing your chances of gaining
ground in the Google SERP's (Search Engine Result Pages).

Targeted directories pass their PageRank value to the websites that list
with them, which is great for your website. Additionally, getting placed
into these directories is often cheaper and easier to accomplish, than with
any other method of linking for the purposes of increasing PageRank.

Reason #4: Extra Traffïc

Yahoo, MSN, WindSeek.com, ExactSeek.com, and many others are making
changes, improving their results, and trying to position themselves to compete
toe-to-toe with Google or to compete for searchers not happy with Google's
search product (yes, there are actually people out there who do not like to
use Google). These non-Google engines are currently serving millïons of
additional searches a day or month.

The Big Three: Google, Yahoo and MSN only served 73% of the Internet's
search traffïc in July 2005
(http://searchenginewatch.com/reports/article.php/3099931),
and 81% of the search traffïc in November of 2005 (
http://searchenginewatch.com/reports/article.php/2156451). These percentages
are based on a rough estimation of just over 5 billion searches per month.

Even on the November 2005 numbers, search engines that are NOT in the Big
Three are delivering 950 million searches per month. That is a lot of
additional traffïc!

If your search engine marketing activities are focused only on the Big
Three, or even worse, only on granddaddy Google, you are throwing away
anywhere from 20% to 53% of your potential customer base!

Locating The Smaller Search Engines and Directories...

Below are a few resources that can help to find hundreds of the smaller
search engines and directories that may be available to you:

Independent Search Engine & Directory Network
Yahoo Search Engine & Directory Listings
International Directory of Search Engines

Small Search Engines and Directories Really Do Matter...

I have just outlined four reasons why the smaller search engines and niche
directories should matter to those of us who market our goods and services
on the Internet. I have also given you a starting point for locating these
excellent search websites.

Sure, it might take a little bit more time to get listed in these smaller
resources, but if you calculate how much time you spend developing your
positioning in the Big Three, then it really is not that much of a time
investmënt after all.

The smaller directories can help us to improve our Google PageRank.
They can help us to get more mileage from our advertising dollars than
what we can get from the Big Three. They allow us to tap into additional
sources of targeted traffïc with a real potential for increasing our salës
and profïts. And, the best reason to use the smaller search engines and
directories is that they actually serve another 950 million searches a month.

Bill Platt

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