The first thing you have to do is register your website with Google and Bing. Once you launch your website onto the world wide web, it is essential that people be able to find your site. If you don't register with the search engines it is a little like getting a new telephone number and not giving it out to anyone, and then wondering why no one ever calls you!
First of all I registered with Google, you can find the page here, once you fill in the form and add all of the details about your site Google will look at it, and as long as you conform to all there rules, will publish your website on Google search. The same goes for Bing, you register your site here.
Once registered you have access to all sorts of stats about your website, but don't get too excited at this stage as there wont be any stats for a while yet. It may take several weeks for your site to start getting traffic and for the search engines to analyse your site. You must bare in mind that at this point your website is going to appear right at the back of the searches for your keywords. When I first launched it I looked for it and gave up after page 16 of google search!
How do you know if your website has been successfully placed on Google search results if your on page 100,000 or something silly like that? Well there is a neat little trick to find out, just go to Google search and type in as a search site:example.co.uk and this will list all of the pages of your website that have been indexed so far, so if I do it now I can see that there are 218 pages of my website on Google search results. This gives me the confidence that Google has looked for, found and indexed all of my pages so far. This trick also works in Bing as well.
Now that I know my website is indexed and being found by Google and Bing, I can now start to focus on tweaking my website and the dreaded Search Engine Optimization (SEO). One of the things I discovered early on was that Google and Bing have hundreds of algorithms that decide where your site should rank in there searches. I also discovered they are different parameters. This means that you can make a change on your site that Google like and pushes you up the rankings, but on Bing it hardly makes any difference. Now you have to choose which search engine your going to optimize your SEO for, of course the obvious choice for me was Google as it is still the most popular search engine at the moment.
Now my site is designed, populated with products, and ready for buyers. I have registered it on the search engines and it is all systems go!!
Now starts the hard and frustrating part about running an ecommerce website.