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You can promote your website, and increase traffic to your webpages, by posting your URL (web address) to major Search Engine Directories or Indices on the World Wide Web.
Any time you go to a major WWW search engine you have the option of searching for documents (webpages, e.g.) by typing key words into an open field. The other option you usually have is to post your webpage address and/or submit your webpage information to the search engine for inclusion in its database. You would look for an icon or text link somewhere on the search engine directory's home page that says something like "Add URL" or "Add New Listing" or "Add Website."
Some of these search engines, such as WebCrawler or AltaVista, are "spiders." These services will simply ask you to submit your URL. They then send a "spider" to your site which will index the entire (text) contents of your website, or perhaps the first 200 words of your website, so that your website can be found in their database by someone else who is doing a key word search. You can have some control over how your website is indexed in these cases by using a "meta" tag in your html. (There is some excellent documentation on the "meta" tag under AltaVista's Help section.)
For a comprehensive view of search engine operation and indexing, tagging and submission strategies, see Search Engine Watch
Other search engines, such as Yahoo, are directories. These services will often ask you to look through their site and identify the category within which you would want to have your website listed. They might also ask you to submit your homepage title, a brief description of your site, and/or several key words appropriate to your site.
There are dozens of search engine directories and indices on the web, and new ones emerging all the time. There are also an increasing number of specialized directories that are specific to certain industries or services. You will need to spend some time going to these directories, doing some searches to see what other like businesses might be doing with their listings, and finding the specialized indices that may exist in your field. This will be time well spent, however, since promoting your website, and getting as many other websites to link to your website as possible, is as important as the design and content of your site.
To get started, go to Channel 1's original, award-winning Web Gate and select the link for Internet Search Engines. This is a partial list, of course, but does include the major WWW search engines. (You also always use any of these search engines to search for additional search engines!) Also, another resource for promoting your website is EXPOSE: Free Web Site Promotion Database.

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