Unfortunately, there are still various SEO companies offering to submit websites to Google and Bing in return for a fee. It is in the interest of those companies for them to perpetuate the myth that search engine submissions are still required, but if you pay them to submit your business’s site to search engines then you’re paying them for nothing.
Search engines charge no fee to be included in their search results. They will include in their results any website that doesn’t contravene their guidelines, which are pretty lenient and only take exception to sites that engage in manipulative and unethical practices. The only reason you would need to pay a search engine is to appear in the paid listings sections of the results (pay per click).
If your website has been live on the internet – meaning that it can be accessed by typing the domain name directly into the address bar of a web browser – for more than a week then it’s highly likely that it can already be found in Google and Bing. This is because these days “submissions” to search engines happen automatically.
Where some confusion arises is around the issue of a website not showing up for the keywords that someone wants it to show up for. However, this has nothing to be with search engine submissions. You can’t submit your site to search engines and tell them that you want to be ranked for this keyword and that keyword.
If you want your website to show up when people search for specific keywords then you need to do both on-site SEO and off-site SEO. Which keywords your site ultimately gets ranked for is dependent on search engine algorithms and their assessment of your site’s relevance and authority.
To find out if your website has already been found by search engines you need to do a search in Google or Bing for the homepage URL of your website (i.e. www.yourdomain.com). If your site shows up in the results then it’s already been found, crawled and indexed by search engines.
Even if you do nothing at all, your site will still eventually be included within Google and Bing. If you want to speed up the process though, or find that even after a week your site still hasn’t been crawled and indexed, there are a few actions that you can take. These are simple, quick and free.
Both Google and Bing recommend that you set-up Webmaster accounts with them. Doing so allows them to communicate to you any problems with, or recommendations for, your website. Whilst you should therefore be setting up these accounts with them at some point, doing it straight after creating your site is equivalent to submitting your website to them. Some of the options and tools within both Webmaster Tools accounts may seem complicated, however, you don’t need to concern yourself with those if you don’t want to. Simply setting up the accounts and linking them to your website is sufficient for getting instantly included in their search results.
A link on another webpage, especially if that webpage is on an established and regularly updated site, pointing towards to your site will ensure that search engines find your site. A single backlink will be sufficient, though creating a few backlinks gives search engines more chances to find your site. The best way to get such a link is by making a comment on a newly published article on a popular blog, as most blogs allow you to link back to your own site when making a comment.
The primary reason for creating a Google+ page for your business is that it builds trust and authority with Google, but there is an added benefit too, which is that you can link your business’s Google+ page to your own website. As soon as you create that link within your Google+ account your website will be instantly crawled and indexed by Google. Alternatively, if you have a personal Google account, login to your account, access the + section and ‘share’ your website’s URL. Or, if you have integrated social media buttons into your site, you can click the +1 button for instant submission/indexation into Google.