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Congratulations!

Your first pages are up and running.

Your next steps:

  1. Now that you've uploaded for the first time, you want to make sure that your website gets listed in all the right places so that everyone can access your site and you can hopefully connect with new cousins!
  • Your new pages should be listed automatically in the FreePages directory within 24 hours (usually overnight) of your first upload to whichever directory/community you loaded your website.  It will be listed under whatever you put in the Title Tag on your index page.  If you don't find it where you thought it would be, check your Title Tag to make sure it's correct. (If your title tag reads "Home Page of .....", you'd find it under Home!)  If you need to change your page title, see my Title Tag page.
     
  • There are other places at RootsWeb you may want to list your page - your website will be about more than just the title of your site.  For others to find your website easily, consider registering at the following:
    • Surname, County and State Sites - You can add your site as a link under a specific surname, county and/or state.  Enter your website on as many pertinent areas as you want, not just once.  Then, when someone is looking for resources for a specific area or surname, your website will show as a resource. For instance, I registered my website as pertinent to Allen County, Ohio and you can see it on the Allen County resource page.   You can click here to go to the place to register your Surname, County, or State resource, which will then be available through the Websites at RootsWeb resource page for everyone to see.  (NOTE:  The description must be very brief and to the point or it will be chopped off, so make it very specific) 
       
    • Rootsweb Surname List (RSL) - This really doesn't have anything to do with your website, but you can also register your many surnames on the Rootsweb Surname List to let individuals know that they can contact you about those names.  Again, you can register as many names as you want.
       
  • You will want to publicize your website elsewhere also.
    • You may want to register your site and/or surnames at other genealogy link sites.  Here are a few suggestions, but there are a lot more places on the net to consider:
      • GenealogyPortal.com - Registration form allows you to submit your site to six different places from one page.
      • I Found It! - A genealogy surname search engine.
      • US GENWEB Project - Most states have a query or surname registry. Add your surnames and your URL.
      • Cyndi's List - The premier genealogy link on the internet!
         
    • It sometimes takes at least a couple weeks before you'll see your site if you search for your surname on the search engines.  To help speed up the process, some search sites offer a way to register your website for them to add.  Go to the search site you want to "find" your page, look for a link called something like "add site" and follow the instructions.  A lot of the links to the major search sites and site addition pages are listed on James Keebaugh's search site page.  For more information about ways to publicize your site, check out Publicizing Your Site (Without Irritating Everyone on the Net)  NOTE:  Make sure that you put the appropriate meta tags (keyword, description, etc) on your site to help it get "seen" by the search engines outside RootsWeb - Google, Alta Vista, Yahoo, etc.
       
    • It also helps to have links to your site from other places with similar interests where visitors to those sites might be interested in visiting yours.  As you make connections with others who have websites, or come across places that list genealogy websites, share your site with them and ask for a link.
  1. Next  you're ready to add to your website.  Go back and look at your design plan and figure out what you want to work on next.
     
  2. Whether you're done designing your site or you're moving on to add and improve it, you still need to set up a regular maintenance schedule.   At a minimum, plan to do a quick once-over of your site every six months, including:
  • Removing any outdated information.
  • Updating with any new information.
  • Checking that your links still work correctly.

Nothing turns visitors off more than going to a website that has been neglected and contains outdated information and bad links.

You own a piece of the internet - keep your property maintained properly!
 

 

 

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This page was last updated on Saturday, May 29, 2010.

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