The term ‘Search Engine’ has a traditional definition but it is used today as a catch-all term for ‘Search Engines’, ‘Pay Per Click Search Engines’ and ‘Directories’. Getting your website to appear on these three types of search engines requires three different strategies.

Search Engines

Search engines are programs that gather information about websites by sending out small analysing programs called "spiders". These spiders crawl through websites looking for prominent text and links and report the findings back to the search engine. The search engine then uses these results to display the most appropriate webpages to users of the search engine site according to the given search criteria.Many popular search engines, such as and, offer free website submissions. It is important to note that all search engines require registration for that particular search engine to include your site in their database.

Pay Per Click Search Engines

Pay per Click Search Engines can be stand-alone websites or incorporated into Search Engines and Directories. Each time a user clicks on the link to one of the website results the owner of the website is charged a small fee. This fee may be a set cost or keywords may be bid on to determine the price and hierarchy of search results. This service obviously requires registration by the website owner.


Directories differ from Search Engines in that the information gathered about your site is not computer-based (spiders) but human base. You either submit a detailed description of your site or editors do it for you. It is this description that is searched by the Engine to find appropriate matches for users of the directory. Most directories charged a fee when submitting your site but if your site is of a high quality and has lots of content you may be added to the Directory for free. was the original Directory-based search engine.