SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and is explained as the process of influencing a website's visibility within a search engine’s organic results. Simplified, it is attempting to get a website ranked higher on Google or other search engines. Good SEO considers how each site works, what users are looking for, and the keywords used to find the sites.
SEO has been around nearly as long as sites like Google or Yahoo. Early on, online programmers and marketers realized the value of having a highly ranked page. While the processes have changed over the years, the overall principles and strategies have remained relatively consistent. These processes can be complex, but we will try and and make them simplified as we go.
As a marketing strategy, SEO is crucial for the success of your online business. Just as a primetime advertising slot on television or radio will garner you the most potential clients, a productive optimization strategy will do the same for your online presence. A high page rank will boost site traffic, which means more potential clients coming in contact with your product or service on a daily basis. Spending money on the right advice would be no different than buying a well-placed billboard or purchasing a TV spot.
SEO can be directed at a local, national, or international level. For example, a small business in New York may not be concerned with the search patterns of someone in Miami. You can focus locally to make the process more simplified. Or, if you are a company that has customers or clients around the globe, you can also take steps so that your rank is high worldwide. Determining at what scale you would like to grow you site’s prominence is one of the first steps.
For a website to be properly ranked it must be indexed. Search engines do this by sending "Internet bots" to systematically browse or the net for algorithmic results. These bots are often called crawlers. Crawlers provide databases with advice as to what should be cataloged or not.
There are many items that affect a website's ranking, either for the good or bad. Good strategies are referred to as "white hat" and are accepted by search engines. They also prove to have long lasting results. Backlinks are one of these times positively affect ranking. Backlinks are links from other website's to your site. For example, Wikipedia sites often have a high rank. This can be explained by the fact that a lot of pages have links to Wikipedia articles. Using XML site maps to insure all pages within a site can be found is another item that would positively affect a site's ranking. At the same time, there are also several "black hat" or frowned upon strategies. Although these techniques provides quick results, they can often get a site banned from various search engines.
Simplified, successful Search Engine Optimization is utilizing good strategies to help your website rank higher in search engine results. Finding the right person to do your SEO is very important. Having the right advice can make or break what you are trying to accomplish. Knowing all of your questions and concerns will be explained thoroughly can be invaluable when taking on an SEO project. Bad advice can be detrimental to your goal, while the right advice can show you an amazing return on investment.
If you have any questions or would like SEO advice on how a strategy could be implemented for your company, contact us and a representative would be happy to help.