BEWARE: You can only add THREE domains per Custom Business Search! If you have lots of unified domains across more than three domain names, you will have to split up your domain searches — and pay for them — in groupings of three domains per search box. I added logos to all my Custom Business searches so my visitors will semiotically know which of my sites they are actually searching!
For $100.00 USD per year, Google will index for me — and then serve for you — up to 5,000 web pages. This new Business Edition of their pre-existing Custom Search offers much more customization, reporting and, above all, it is advertising free.
The great thing about Google Custom Search Business Edition is that I can create a pre-drilled deep digging of all the sites I own and operate and have only those sites returned in a search. If there’s something I’ve published or put on the web it can now be found much more easily via this sophisticated and focused search method.
Here’s a peek at my Control Panel. Setup was super-easy. I simply add the domains I want Google Custom Business Edition to serve up and Google does the rest. The real power, I learned, is in the ability to EXCLUDE some parts of your site that you do not want returned.
Urban Semiotic has tons of information across thousands of pages and the current WordPress.com search engine does not drill down well and finding something you want or said in a comment is impossible. With Google Custom Business Edition, you can get returns that include comments.
However, I had to EXCLUDE the RSS feeds for my blogs because when you just enter your domain name, EVERYTHING on your domain gets indexed. So when I did a search on a recent unique phrase in our Comments here, Google provided a link to my Comments RSS feed.
That wasn’t a good thing because when you clicked on the URL to read the result, your localized RSS reader popped up to subscribe you to the RSS feed instead of having Google just give you the comment. The fix was to exclude the RSS feeds from being indexed in the first place and once that’s done, you’re golden.
Customization of your search is great fun. You can add your own logo and have Google load your search returns on a page on your own server.
Google also gives you a Homepage to use for your searches, but it is so ugly and plain no one with the ability to setup a custom search would ever use it in the real world.
Here’s how the generic search returns look when you use the generic search page to call up your results:
The real power and the greatest joy comes in loading Google’s Custom Search Business Edition from within your own pages on your own site.
This is web logo Branding at its best and you can quickly find what you need using all the standard Google search terms:
I added a Google search box under our standard WordPress search box so you can find what you’re looking for here.
When you click on the Google Custom Search Business Edition link you will be taken to http://BolesUniversity.com/search.html where you can search until you can type no more.
All of my sites will be included in those search returns — so if you only want Urban Semiotic stuff — make sure you make that clear in your search.
If you get some great information returned in the search that surprises or pleases you, please share your find with the rest of us here in a comment!