The website would need to be studied carefully to decide why keywords are not getting ranked. However a few points to consider include:

If you have paid for submissions but are unable to see results then most probably the keywords and the website are not fitting the criteria set by the search engines.
If the website is new, wait for at least three months before you start making any major changes.
After this period if keywords are still not ranked then you need to employ optimization techniques such as linking to quality text from other websites, taking on advertising partners, etc.

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