A Search Engine for your Website ? - Part III Getting Ready...

You need some housekeeping before installing a search engine for your site (local or remotely hosted). Without this preparation, search engine will not be able to index your site properly resulting in failure to locate information even when it is available.

Housekeeping involves mainly two tasks

  • Make sure every page has proper meta tags
  • There are good navigational links interconnecting all pages

In addition, you may have to perform few more tasks in case your site uses frames, flash or shockwaves.

Most of these issues were discussed in detail in previous articles on how to submit your site for search engines (please see the series on e-commerce fundamentals).

The best part is that - the same housekeeping will also work for universal search engines like AltaVista or Google and make your site more accessible.

The Next Step - Sign Up

Now that your website is ready to have a search engine, you need to sign up with a remote site search service. Signing up is the simplest thing on earth - most just ask you to register with your name, a password, and a URL for the robot to start at. The indexer will usually visit your site soon afterward, quickly making its way through all your links - so try to do this during a quiet time.

Which Search Service ?

There are hundreds of remotely hosted search engine services, free as well as fee-based. Usually, search services offer free service for small sites and charge a monthly fee when number of pages exceed a pre-defined limit.

Below is a list of remotely hosted search engine services.

  • FreeFind http://www.freefind.com/ Adds a search engine to your website. Available in free sponsor supported version or ad-free subscription version.
  • Atomz.com http://www.atomz.com/ Offers a free search engine for sites with less than 500 pages. Also has commercial versions.
  • Picosearch LLC http://www.picosearch.com/ Free online search engine for your web site up to 1500 pages. Professional and Premium plans also available that support more pages.
  • FusionBot.com http://www.fusionbot.com/ Offers site search, site map, and reporting services. Includes free and pay versions, customizable, telephone support.
  • Spiderline LLC - http://www.spiderline.com/ Fee-based site search engine for personal and business web sites. Offering complete control of page design, comprehensive query reports, and reliable service. Free trial available.
  • SearchKing Portal Program http://1st-portal-program.searchking.com SearchKing's Portal Program - helps you build a search-driven portal site. 
  • Blossom Software remote-hosted Web services http://www.blossom.com Blossom offers a high-quality, low-cost, fully customizable search service. Notable features include results in context, spell checking of search terms, and fine control over order of search results. Free trial available.
  • CrazyRhino.com http://www.crazyrhino.com/ Free site search with no advertisements. Includes a FAQ and related information.
  • Jittersearch http://www.jittersearch.com/ Hosted search service offering three classes of service: free Community service, Pro service and a Corporate service. 
  • SiteLevel http://sitelevel.whatuseek.com/ Free site-level search tool for up to 1,000 pages. Usage reporting, Boolean searches and phrasing supported.
  • MondoSearch - http://www.mondosearch.com/ Site search and reporting. Available in both software and remotely hosted versions.

Above is only a demonstrative list - there are many more good search services. This place is too short to list them all. You can use any good search engine to find the rest.

Related Links:

Source: FAIDA - Newsletter on Business Opportunties from India and Abroad Vol: 3, Issue 23 September 26' 2002

Author : Dr. Amit K. Chatterjee
(Amit worked in blue-chip Indian and MNCs for 15 years in various capacities like Research and Information Analysis, Market Development, MIS, R&D Information Systems etc. before starting his e-commerce venture in 1997. The views expressed in this columns are of his own. He may be reached at amit@infobanc.com )

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