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Starting an Online Business All-in-One For Dummies®, 3rd Edition by Joel Elad, Shannon Belew

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Moving Up in the Rankings

The key isn't always to be in the top spot. Considering the enormous amount of new information that becomes indexed every day — not to mention the continual updating of search engine algorithms — you can waste a lot of time trying to stay on top by retaining the top search engine result for your important keywords.

You should have two goals for your ranking in the search engine results:

  • A position that's high enough on the list before a potential customer sees your competitors
  • A position among the first page or two

Most people who are presented with multiple pages of search engine results typically skim the first page and try a few links. A few of them then go to the second page and try more links. After the second or even third page of results, however, if the destination sites aren't close to what the user is looking for, that person typically enters a new string of keywords, sees a different set of results, and tries again.

You can earn a prominent spot by using keywords in the right spots or partnering with a business to link to your Web site. If you're interested in staying ahead of your competition, though, read these next few sections. We show you how to find your rankings and then how to keep an eye on your competition.

Knowing where you stand

You can't know where you're going unless you know where you are. Your first job is to understand what the search engines know about your Web site.

Search engines provide a growing number of tools that can ...

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