Understanding Search Engine Optimization is the FIRST Step towards successful online marketing!
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a train you need to hop on. The day you decide to join the brigade will be the day you can begin refining your marketing approaches and improve your business. Make it TODAY!
Any business and promotional activities you participate in online can be deemed SEO. Often if you post or publish something, it is linked back to a personal or professional profile or your website. These links create a pathway that leads users to your company. Let me explain how this works.
Search Engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.) have these software robots that we call “spiders”, and they crawl the World Wide Web searching for unique terms and phrases, which we web developers like to call Keywords and Keyphrases. They also search for links. When spiders find a link, they follow it and begin the crawling process over again and again and again. The spiders collect the data and save it. Web users go to a search engines to look up a service or product and the search engine is able to locate the most relevant site based on the terminology submitted. This is how search engines find you, but there are many factors that determine your relevance in Search Engine Return Pages (SERPs).
Your ranking relies on your relevance or what we call a “trust factor”. Is your company real? How long has it been established? Is it managed and marketed by real people? Is your online presence consistently updated? The SEO techniques you rely on heavily impact your trust factor. If you use White Hat SEO Techniques, which are approved methods of improving your ranking, your website will steadily become more reliable in the eyes of spiders and their related search engines. If you use Black Hat SEO Techniques, methods which have been banned (because they tend to try and cheat the system), your credibility is lost and you must begin from scratch. Use of the web and digital media is ever increasing; as a business owner or representative, it’s important that you use it regularly and that you use it right.
SEO takes a long time to build and never ends. If you spend years building your reputation online and it is crushed by a Black Hat technique, you’ve lost years of organic growth! Organic SEO is this slow, steady climb in reliability that is built not just by yourself and your other representatives, but by people outside of your company. Other web users may link to your website, your Facebook Fan Page, they might RE-tweet from your Twitter page or comment on your blog. This is the following and web of links you are looking to establish and build upon, and it takes forever, literally. But one bad move and you’re back to the bottom of the food chain.
I cannot press how important it is to follow the rules, to understand the rules, and to regularly educate yourself on the topic. Luckily there are endless resources that you can SEARCH for online! As search engines continue to increase in accuracy, you will find more relevant SERPs.
SEO – Search Engine Optimization: helps Search Engines locate and translate your website’s meaning and/or purpose into unique phrases to achieve a high ranking on Search Engine Return Pages
(SERPs) SERPs – Search Engine Return Pages: are the results displayed in the browser after you have submitted a search via a search engine.
Search Engine: examples include Google, Yahoo, Bing, Dog Pile, Ask Jeeves, etc.
Spiders: are Software Robots that build lists of words found on websites and the location they were found. This process is referred to as Web Crawling.
White Hat SEO: refers to approved SEO techniques that will improve your website rankings in the long term.
Black Hat SEO: refers to banned SEO techniques. They are typically implemented to con search engines into appointing higher ranking to the related website. Often these techniques are short term solutions to gain higher rankings but can also lead to a site’s removal from search engines. (NEVER DO THESE)
Gray Hat SEO: refers to SEO techniques that are not banned, but frowned upon. As a web developer, you never know when one of these unsavory techniques will be banned and damage your online reputation. (AVOID THESE)
Organic SEO: is achieved over time through efforts of those outside of your organization who may refer to your website or other online presences. Organic SEO greatly increases your “trust factor”.
Trust Factor: is the relevance of your website or the likelihood that your products and services are true and of interest.