“Search engine optimization”. Quite possibly the most over-used term in marketing. Interestingly enough, the question what is search engine optimization can result in a wide variety of responses, some of which demonstrate that not everyone knows exactly what the answer is.
Briefly, here’s what you need to know about search engine optimization (SEO):
- SEO is simply a marketing tool that enables an enterprise to improve the rankings and visibility of it’s website (as well as online presence in general) by improving the on-page and off-page factors search engines consider important.
- Without SEO, the company’s Internet search results will be buried too far down the rankings to be of much benefit or, in the alternative, will generate so many results as to be overwhelming. For example, the question what is search engine optimization turned up over 48,500,000 results in a recent search conducted for this content.
- Perhaps more important than asking “what is search engine optimization”, especially for small and medium-sized businesses, is why is SEO so important?
- In a nutshell, effective use of this tool drives traffic, increases rankings on search engines and raises awareness on an organic (non-paid) basis rather than by using paid search engine marketing (SEM).
- A comprehensive online marketing strategy requires more than simply maximizing results based on keyword usage, however.
- Designing site architecture that simplifies navigation is a key factor to improving search rankings.
- A website which search engines have difficulty understanding will likely not rank high in search results and, therefore, not attract much traffic.
- In addition, it should go without saying that the website should load quickly, even on mobile devices.
- Search engines use algorithms that read data found on the Internet and determine which results are most relevant to the initial search.
- Each algorithm is constructed using numerous factors, most of which are proprietary and, therefore, not available to businesses so that they can deconstruct them and develop workarounds.
- When it comes to increasing search rankings which then drive traffic to a website, the site’s content is the factor that most influences algorithms to rank some results higher than others.
So what is search engine optimization? It’s the best, most cost-effective way for companies to market themselves and what they sell or do if they produce content that is unique, informative and related to topics for which Internet searches are conducted and the website itself is easy to view and use.