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What are Search Engines and why are they important?

Search Engines are basically massive worldwide directories or databases of websites that will help you to locate or find specific information on the Internet. To find what you are looking for, you type in keywords or phrases relating to the information, and the Search Engine will present you with a list of Websites that contain data matching the keywords or phrases you entered.

The more general your keywords, the more sites you will be presented with, and it is not unusual for the Search Engine to present thousands of Websites all containing the keywords or phrases you have used.

Usually you are presented with 10 possible Websites per page. Unless you choose your keywords and phrases with care in the first instance, you may never find what you are looking for, and many people give up searching after the first 4 or 5 pages. In other words they tend to just search through the top-50 Websites presented to them, and then ignore the rest.

Search Engines are extremely important in eBusiness and eCommerce terms. If people don't know your Website exists or know how to locate it, your site will never be found. So one of the first priorities of all new Websites is to attempt to get listed by the Search Engines, particularly the most important ones which are frequently called the Major Search Engines.

As being listed by a Search Engine is a privilege and not a right, it is important when submitting a site for consideration to ensure that the correct protocols are followed, and that the specific Search Engine's rules are not breached. Failure to comply could result in your Website being banned for life!

As if getting listed by the Search Engines wasn't hard enough, it is even harder to reach one of the coveted top-50 ranking slots, and a whole new pseudo-science called Search Engine Optimisation - SEO - has evolved based on helping Websites to attain these elusive goals.

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