Search Engine Optimization
Let me explain what is search engine optimization. Imagine that you've finished building your new website for your small business, complete with beautiful graphics, a responsive design and content which will make potential clients cry with joy. Everything is done, you just have to sit back and wait for the visitors...
If you stop with merely having a great web design, you're highly unlikely to receive many hits on your site, and some of these will actually be people looking for something completely different. The solution is called "Search Engine Optimization" or "SEO" for short.
How Search Engines Work
The first search engine was basically a list of websites compiled by hand. With the ballooning size of what is available on the web, ever more sophisticated software started by automating the collection of links. The situation today is that search engines are very good at taking a verbal search string and returning a list of the most related websites.
They do this in a number of ways, from examining the HTML code of a website for keywords to analyzing the number of links to your site, especially from websites with a high search ranking. In this way, web pages can "vote" for one another.
Search Engine Optimization and Your Website
If your website doesn't appear within the first couple of links when a relevant search query is entered into Google, you have some work to do. People rarely look beyond the first page of results, so you're losing business if your website is buried at the bottom. Search engine optimization is a specialized, constantly changing field, so you will be far better off contracting an SEO company, rather than trying to do it yourself. To facilitate communication and ensure that you are getting the best possible results, it's recommended you look for local SEO services.
The basic goal of SEO is to enhance the position your website occupies in a search engine's results without using paid advertising – called "organic" results. The first step will be to understand exactly what your business does and how the search ranking can be improved. At the simplest level, this involves using keywords correctly, which implies more than simply repeating the same phrase a hundred times.
SEO is a mystery even to some experts; what worked well six months ago might no longer be relevant. The average SEO Company often ventures into ethically gray areas when promoting the organic growth of a website in order to convince search engines that their clients websites are, in fact, interesting to human readers. Over time, search engines become more adept at spotting tricks, which may then actually degrade the page ranking!
Increasingly, the trend is to use high-quality content and links to drive page ranking, rather than simply spamming the internet. If you talk to a competent SEO advisor, he or she will probably be happy to explain what should be done (and why) to grow the number of people landing on your page, whether it is intended as a sales tool or only as a source of information.
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