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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,

I did not know there was so much involved in getting your website on Yahoo, etc let alone not knowing it is not guaranteed even if you pay!!!! I am looking into opening a web site for me tee biz and I just want to know if you have any recommendations at tall as to who I should try to get my search enging through. Should I do Yahoo, Google, About. Are there any special words for me to put in my application that would give my website more of a chance to be noticed. I must say I am green to getting your website listed in the major search engines.

Also, I went on-line today to look at Ebay as an option but it seems like there are so many people selling t-shirts how would mine stand out? Is there anyone making money selling their t-shirts on Ebay and how long was it before you saw a profit?

Any advice would be appreciated.
 

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welcome to the crowd.. First of all unless you do a pay per click ads don't expect you to be seen on yahoo or google. Just because you have a web site doesn't mean you move to the top.. And don't pay yahoo a penny.. it takes time and it take great content and the right wording to get you seen by the googlebots.. yes that is what they are called. about one time a month the little spiders go out looking for new webs. I run several web sites.. Type in my name on yahoo search "Louis Robin" and you will see what happens.. Number 2.. yippee.. Now are you looking for a cat for a pet.. want a pedigree cat/ Type in "pedigree cat" in either yahoo or google and you will see feline USA.. That is my cat site..right at the top.. But it took me several years to get there and I never paid anyone a penny. My cat site is what furnaced my tee business. Your going to have to get in line. if you pay someone I will bet you will never see your money again. Adwords work but they cost money. Good luck. Lou
 

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Hi Tiffany, you don't have to pay yahoo, google, about, or anybody to get your site listed in the search engines.

All the search engines do have paid listings (Called "Sponsored Listings") that show up at the top and side of their regular search result pages. But you can still have your site show up in the regular search results pages without paying.

The first step to do this is to learn about search engine optimization. This basically means making sure your site has all the key elements that search engines look for when trying to figure out what your site is about and where they should rank it with the other listings.

If you can tell more about what your t-shirt site is about, I can be more specific with my recommendations, but a good starter page to read is actually Google's Webmaster Guidelines. You can find links to Google and other good first step SEO (Search Engine Optimization) tips in this thread:
http://www.t-shirtforums.com/showpost.php?p=15443&postcount=2

It does take a while for your site to start showing up and moving up the ranks in the search engines, but it's time well spent. Since the only expense for those visitors is time, it can pay off very well. The majority of people that make a purchase online find their destination through a search engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks to both replies. Rodney, my t-shirt biz will specialize in urban, christian, humurous and children t-shirts. Do you have any recommended key phrases that will get my sight noticed more?

Thanks
 

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Well, the goal is to concentrate on the search phrases and keywords that your potential customers would type in when using their favorite search engine to find the products you sell.

So if you sell urban t-shirts, christian t-shirts, and children's t-shirts, then that would probably be the start of the keyphrases you would concentrate on for your site:

urban t-shirts
christian t-shirts
children's t-shirts

From there, you can expand those phrases and find similar phrases that customers might use to describe the same thing, but with different words.

I like to use the overture search term suggestion tool for that, but Google and Yahoo/Overture both have a tool that will give you suggested, related terms you can use to broaden your keywords.

The Overture tool will show you how many times a particular term was searched for last month. It will also show you related searches and their search volume:
http://inventory.overture.com/d/searchinventory/suggestion/

So the phrase: urban t-shirts was searched for 966 times last month. The phrase christian t-shirts was searched for 13,714 times (a much bigger market?), children's t-shirt was searched for 622 times, but "kids t-shirt" was searched for 1522 times.

As I said, if you decide to use pay per click advertising like Google Adwords or Yahoo Search Marketing, then they will give you some related terms once you tell them what keywords your site is about (urban, christian, childrens t-shirts).

But when you are designing your site, you can use these tips to help maximize your potential visitors from the regular (non paid) search results. If you take time to optmize to make it both people and search engine friendly, your site will fare much better in the long run as more people start linking to your site.

Instead of reinventing the wheel, I'll link you to a couple of good articles/topics that will show you how to create a "good" optimized page:

Building the Perfect Page - Part I The Basics - From WebmasterWorld.com
Building the Perfect Page - Part II The Basics - From WebmasterWorld.com (a great forum for webmasters)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Rodney thank you. You really do take the time to try and help as much as you can and I like the fact you back up a lot of your advice with articles and research. Everyone here is very helpful. Thank you.
 

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Rodney said:
Have you seen how big I am? My middle name isn't XXL for nothin'

to answer the question though, anybody with enough posts gets a big black t-shirt :)
Ooooooohhhh!!!!

Big Black Shirt...I was wondering...Now I know...I can't wait!!!
 

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If you can find a free way of running a reverse search it will tell you all the keywords and 1/3 of the times it was searched for in the last month Like if you typed in T-shirts It would start out saying t-shirts X amount of times then maybe, funny t-shirts x amount of times then wierd t-shirts and so on. Then with this info you know which key word phrases to list on your site. and which ones are the most looked after. I still dont get very many hits from google or yahoo mayby 1 or 2 a day We have been opened for 2 months. I am told that that aint bad I get most of my search engin hits from msn. I have better luck with the phrases that are not as popular because every t-shirt shop out there that sells what I sell has the most popular key word in them. So there is alot of people in front of me on that. But slowley but surley.
 

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tiffhlove said:
Any advice would be appreciated.
Tiff,

SiteBuildIt offers a lot of free information on search engine optimization. They also sell web hosting but are primarily geared toward people making money off of information/seo rather then selling hard goods.

its good reading though and puts things in the right perspective, IMO, but best of all its free. :)
 

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If you can find a free way of running a reverse search it will tell you all the keywords and 1/3 of the times it was searched for in the last month Like if you typed in T-shirts It would start out saying t-shirts X amount of times then maybe,
That is available at the overture link I posted in post #5 above.

I have better luck with the phrases that are not as popular because every t-shirt shop out there that sells what I sell has the most popular key word in them
I think this is an area that most people overlook when starting out. Web searchers are getting more and more specific when they are doing searches for products. Instead of searching for "t-shirts", they are now searching for chess player t-shirts or even chess checkmate t-shirts. While the volume of those 3-5 search word searches is lower than say "t-shirts", the person doing the search is actively looking for products to buy. That's why it's so important to build a quality page from the top down when making your t-shirt shopping pages.
 

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Rodney said:
I think this is an area that most people overlook when starting out. Web searchers are getting more and more specific when they are doing searches for products. Instead of searching for "t-shirts", they are now searching for chess player t-shirts or even chess checkmate t-shirts. While the volume of those 3-5 search word searches is lower than say "t-shirts", the person doing the search is actively looking for products to buy. That's why it's so important to build a quality page from the top down when making your t-shirt shopping pages.
I agree, Rodney. The overarching idea in business is to provide something of value to your customers within your niche, for example: high quality or low cost shirts with unique designs catering to the niche.

Once you've identified the value in what you're selling, it becomes easier to find/exploit keywords that people use to search, because you've identified the need (or want in most cases) that you're fulfilling as a business.

When it comes to keywords, you want to think in terms of supply and demand. Keywords with low supply and high demand are ideal, but unlikely. Keywords with moderate to low supply and moderate to low demand (at least 100 searches per month) are where you want to cut your teeth as a start-up.

I think that owning your niche in the search engines, or at least breaking into the top ten, for the keywords you decide to roll with, is an attainable goal for a start-up to have with a little work up front.
 

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Will searches pull any word on you website or just meta tags. I'm starting to build mine and any help would be appreciated. Thanks Bruce
 

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Will searches pull any word on you website or just meta tags.
Yes, most search engines use mostly the words on your page to figure out what your site is about. The META tags aren't factored in as much as the actual page content.
 

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Tiffany, Rodney's advice regarding search engines is right on. Today the Internet is a mainstream communication tool. My approach to marketing and conducting business online is a lot different than it was in the early days. My best advice to you is to not forget to market your web site address on your t-shirt designs and any of the traditional promotional materials. I find that to be the most common oversight. It can take a year or more for your site to come up in the search results of a major search engine, even if you do everything according to the "rules" of the players at the time.

As for making an eBay presence pay, I learned a lot about that game in particular this past year. I had always considered eBay a place to dump unwanted stuff quickly. I am getting ready to launch a store through that service, myself. The name "eBay" is memorable when you are walking around in geospace (the real world); you can take advantage of the power of their name by referring the people you meet to your presence there. You tell everyone you connect with that they can find your stuff on eBay and give them the key words to search for to find you. Your ID and store names can be instrumental in making your presence easy to find. eBay offers lots of great advice on listing your products for sale.

Barb
 

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You dont want to put words or word phrases on your page that has nothing to do with your page though. One you will get vistitors that dont want what you have and two the search engines can detect you as a spammer.
 
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