This horse would not have been located a decade later had it not been for her report filed on the Stolen Horse International website. Watch this beautiful video detailing Painted Lady's journey.
Opie, a Paint horse stolen from Texas, was found ten years after he was stolen. Soldier, the mule, was found 11 years later. Another horse, Painted Lady, was recently found 10 years later as well. And those are not the only ones!
What do all of these recoveries have in common? All of the owners had filed a report on www.netposse.com. Stolen Horse International’s webpage for each horse was found when a search was performed on Google. Those results helped bring closure to the owners who searched for them for so long.
Technology and Finding Stolen and Missing Horses
Finding missing or stolen horses requires a solid digital presence today. Technology has changed tremendously since Stolen Horse International, Inc. started searching for the first stolen horse with an alert on the internet in 1997. The horse was named Idaho, and she belonged to the founders of the 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Harold and Debi Metcalfe. Stolen Horse International was a presence on the Internet long before most people knew what the Internet highway was about.
The internet began when Idaho was stolen from Shelby, NC, and AOL was king. There was no such thing as social media or Facebook. Emails were slowly taking over snail mail. Websites were creeping into the brick-and-mortar space. The way we communicated with each other, the way we shopped, and the way we looked at the world was changing fast.
Fast forward to 2021, and younger people find it hard to remember the purpose of letters, stamps, a dictionary, or even a phone call. Traffic on many websites is way down compared to two decades ago. Everything is fast-paced, instant and a text or social media post is now king. Or is it?
The #1 go-to resource these days seems to be Facebook for spreading the word about a missing or stolen animal. Decisions about where to spend your time marketing the animal are critical.
Although there are many reasons to add Facebook and other social media to your search, that doesn’t mean it should be Facebook vs. Stolen Horse International’s website, www.netposse.com. Both should be used. The two work very well together, strengthening the chances a horse will be located.
Stolen Horse International-NetPosse Missing and Stolen Equine have a strong presence on Facebook with over 56,000 followers and a reach of over 3,435,331 people through October 2021. Unlike many similar pages on the platform, Stolen Horse International-NetPosse Missing, and Stolen Equine is far from just a Facebook page that puts someone else's Facebook post on their timeline. Both are helpful and appreciated, but only one has the power of a nonprofit organization with decades of experience working with victims behind it.
Stolen Horse International also has had a long-standing website since 1997, and this is where the organization's heart is located. You can use .com or .org to search for the website. You will find all the report listings, educational articles, videos, educational information, the NetPosse Store, and more. Facebook is just one of the many tools the organization uses for its NetPosse Alerts, the equivalent of the missing children’s network in the horse industry.
Over one 365-day period, the website had 602,513 hits and 297,193 unique visitors, with 440,504 of those coming from mobile phones. Considering how much social media has replaced traffic to many websites, those numbers are phenomenal for a small nonprofit organization whose only advertisement is word of mouth and Google.
Let’s consider ten things when choosing between Facebook, NetPosse.com, or both.
How Google Finds Stolen Horse International’s Website
So, what does this have to do with you, and why your missing horse should be on NetPosse.com?
Before you search Google, their web crawlers have gathered information from billions of websites. They have that information organized in a search index.
Think of Google like you would the index in the back of a book. Google has an entry for every word seen on every webpage Google indexes. When they index a webpage, they add it to the entries for all of the words it contains. Keep in mind that Stolen Horse International has been around for almost 24 years so the crawlers have been crawling on www.netposse.com for decades.
Stolen Horse International’s website is indexed in the back of Google’s book! Although Facebook pages are indexed, your post on Facebook, depending on where it is located, is most likely not listed in that Google book.
Don’t you want your information in the Google index if it could mean bringing your horse home?
How Google and Stolen Horse International Help Find Horses
Stolen horse, stolen horses, and missing horse are the most common phrases used on NetPosse.com and are the most used words in an internet search on Google when a horse is missing.
So if those words are most common on NetPosse.com’s website, what do you think is going to happen when someone enters those words into their search feature? The NetPosse.com website may come up first in your Google results!
If you put other key phrases in the search like the name of a horse that is missing, the location, or the type of a horse then there is a high likelihood that one of the many indexed report listings on NetPosse.com will pop up.
If you know you saw a NetPosse Alert somewhere, add the words NetPosse or NetPosse.com to your search criteria. That increases your chances of finding the listing you want to see.
Let’s break it down.
If you file a report on www.netposse.com / www.netposse.org, it gets indexed. Because it is indexed then days, years, even decades later someone can put in specific keywords or phrases and a NetPosse Report can come up in the results.
Unlike much of the information on Facebook that is not indexed, the NetPosse.com webpages may be searchable in Google forever.
Now you know the rest of the story as to why you should always file a report with Stolen Horse International on their website. Facebook may be one of the best tools for you to use, but it pays to understand why you need to keep that NetPosse report listing going as part of your online search strategy.
Seeing your horse again may depend on it!