Blog Fiction and Search Engines


Search Engine Optimization or "SEO" is finding little tricks for creating your website so that it will be more friendly to search engines. By "friendly" I mean so that when somebody does a google or yahoo search, your website will come up instead of somebody else's. Most SEO concentrates of google since that's where nearly 60% of all web searches are done.

There are 2 basic ways to make your website more visible to search engines.
1. Make it easier to be searched by a search engine
2. Make it more important.(usually accomplished by getting other websites to link to yours)

There are entire websites, books, and seminars dedicated to teaching you the finer points of SEO. Therefore I can't really add anything new on how to do it. What I can say is that, based on what I've seen, if you have a website with only fictional content (like a fictional blog). Don't waste your time on it. Just let it happen.

Nearly 6 months went by after going live I got zero traffic from search engines on Terran Resistance. I then spent weeks, maybe months, learning about SEO. I made my forums and blog more searchable. I spent time on other forums and blogs creating links to my site and getting others to provide links. Now that I've done all that "optimizing" I now get at least 1 hit every other day. So you might think that it worked right? Well... let's take a look at the top 5 searches that brought people to my website in 2007:

  1. women in combat
  3. marine drills
  4. fast marines
  5. drills marine
Well, that'll teach me to write militaristic scifi. So it looks like people that find my site aren't finding what they are looking for, and people looking for a fiction aren't finding my site. Oh and 2008 isn't looking much better. No one looking up info about marines has found me, but I am getting some equally random searches:
  • Kramble (1)
  • Terran Miller (1)
  • ramona steele (2)
  • alex chou (1)
To a human, these searches make no sense. Searches that SHOULD be finding my website are, "fiction", "science fiction", "blog fiction", or "online writing". To a machine like google though, it does make sense. Google, and most every search engine is based on the words on a website. Therefore, the words that appear on my website like "ramona steele" and "marine drills", are the search words that bring up my website.

This is the problem with people finding online fiction. Search Engines can rarely bring you directly to a fictional story base on how they work. Instead people are more likely to find websites that have lists of online fiction. Therefore, if you're trying to promote your online fiction, don't worry about getting traffic directly from search engines - like I did. Find websites that catalog online fiction(like this one) and get a link on that website.


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