Talk about websites and the conversation will intertwine with one about search engines, but there was a time before search engines too and not too long away too. However, search engines have made accessing online information so easy that people cannot fathom a time before search engines. Some might even ask how people accessed websites before search engines. Well, there were a few ways, and here is a list of just some of these methods.
The first way that people promoted their websites was the traditional way of writing down the web address – sometimes complete with the Http://. It would be too uncommon for someone in the Internet business to have a diary that had – they did not call it links back then – addresses of websites that they like, and would like to visit. This was also the reason behind the short and easy to remember domain names back then.
The other way that webmasters promoted their websites was via traditional advertising and marketing. They would actually advertise in offline events, sponsor them and pay huge money just to have their web addresses out there. Some websites would even advertise on other websites, which was a predecessor to the link exchange programs that are quite common today. Many websites sponsor and advertise on offline events even today, but the reason is not just advertising, but others too, like fraternizing with a common niche business, etc.
Another important way to promote a website was to list the website in the website directories. Two decades ago, website directories were the top dog when it came to promoting a website and getting traffic to it. It worked more or less like the offline telephone directory, where webmasters would submit their website addresses along with a brief description. The directory would then categorize the website according to the niche that it belonged to, and users would have to browse through all the listings in the categories.
Website directories are not dead and gone. Today, they form an important part of search engine optimization because of the seminal database of websites that it is, and the age of the website. Some directories offer free listing, while yet others offer a listing for a fee, either a flat lifetime fee or a monthly subscription. This method is still relevant, and one of the first baby steps that a search engine optimizer takes while optimizing a particular website for better traffic. There were several website directories, and many of the complete information portals today started out as article directories. These directories also offered free hosting to people who wished to start a website but did not have the resources to – a predecessor to blogging. A good search engine optimizing company will submit a website they to all the relevant website directories, as the link juice that they give to the site is invaluable.
These are just some of the ways in which people used to promote their website back in the days when search engine optimization was not an option.
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