How To: Ensure You are Discoverable (Connecting to Google, Bing, and Yahoo)
Where Can You be Found?
Once your website is finalized and launched, it can be tempting to think that’s the end of it and now you can be found by your target audience. However, unless you actively connect your website to search engine(s), you won’t be found when someone conducts a search on them. Launching your website and buying your domain gives you a place on the internet and the ability to have your URL entered and found that way.
Being found on search engines is completely different. It is important to be found on them as well because this is how most people discover websites and companies—most of us aren’t testing out and typing URLs!
There are a few similarities in the process of getting connected. One is that you will want an account associated with that search engine to both connect your site and have access to the analytics. For example, when connecting to Google, you will need a Google account. Each set up will require verification of the domain as well; so it would be a benefit for you prior to connecting to ensure however the website is verified, you have access to that once again.
Depending on if you are using a hosting platform that has forms or plugins that can take care of the connection for you, or you are going to embed the HTML code within your site’s code, there will be a slight difference in the set up. This article will provide you with general notes on how to get connected and how to make sure you are connected to each search engine.
Google is the top search engine, controlling the most of the industry. For many, it’s the search engine they think about when asked about search engines. And there’s a reason for it. Google has many tools for both searchers and websites alike.
To connect to Google, you must have a Google account because the set up goes through Google Search Console. You will then be asked to verify the domain; this can be done with the domain (which will cover all URLs across subdomains and https or http, but does require DNS verification) or the URL prefix. To verify you will enter input the code within your website (one way is through TXT). Once your ownership is verified, your site can be connected. All the steps are walked through from smart to finish.
Bing is the second most prolific search engine after Google. Taking advantage of that can bring you more users to your website.
You will want to access Bing’s Webmaster Tools to verify and add your website. You can create an account utilizing Google, Microsoft, or Facebook. Once you create an account on Bing Webmasters, you can add a site clicking on the upper left corner. You will be walked through the steps by Bing. If you have already verified your site on Google Search Console, you can import the site that way, or you can do so manually. Either way, the domain verification is a necessity, as is adding record to your site.
Yahoo! is the third top search engine based on popularity / number of searches. Bing powers Yahoo, so there is a close similarity between the two sites, but each has their own benefit. However, since it is powered by Bing, your site will be submitted via Bing Webmaster Tools to be present.
How to be sure your website is on each search engine?
One way you can check is by going on Yahoo Search and checking for your website. You can do this by using a phrase that matches your website title or description, or searching for your website domain (such as site:yahoo.com or site:google.com, etc.) Additionally, if it is connected, you should see your website’s analytics on the profile of that search engine (Bing Webmasters or Google Search Console). It most cases, either the hosting platform or search engine account will indicate if your website disconnects and you can reconnect it in a similar manner to the first start up. You may be asked to reverify the domain, so be sure to have the account ready.