Search Engine Optimization (SEO)


SEO is a process. It is not a piece of software you can buy and you are not in control of what it does. You are at the mercy of the Internet Gods. You use SEO guidelines when building your website or blog to insure that the major search engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing etc.) send traffic your way when an Internet user does a keyword search that is relevant to your site. In visual terms, your website shows up on the first page of the returned search results near the top of the page for that user if you did it right. If you are successful playing the SEO game, you will achieve that result. If you suck at playing the SEO game, find someone who is good at it to build your site and write your content for you. SEO is a powerful tool. SEO analyzes both on page content and off page as well as site organization so you must optimize the entire site if you seek a high natural search engine ranking. That is how SEO affects you. If you are operating an e-commerce site, you care very much about having good SEO qualities. If your website or blog is written for a small community or cult following, you probably do not care about SEO as your followers will find you by word of mouth.

In real terms, the SEO process is controlled and operated by the major search engines. They analyze and evaluate your website to determine what your ranking index will be. You do not get a vote. The relevance of visitor traffic to a site is measured by analyzing how often a visitor who uses a specific keyword phrase in a search actually performs what is known as a "conversion action”. That is, how often those visitors make a purchase, download materials, request information, or interact with the site in any other way that indicates interest in the product or service the site offers. Authority also plays a part in how SEO views your site. How many links to other sites establishes the importance of your site i.e. its authority. You might call each link a vote in your favor.

Google e.g. displays sites it believes areauthoritative andrelevant. They measure relevance by analyzing page content, the words your customer reads (the free and natural stuff), and they measure authority based on the number and quality of other pages linking to the pages your website shows.

That is the simplistic answer. The SEO algorithm is complex and changes frequently in response to public sentiment and what keywords they actually type into the box of the search engine. Thus, it is dynamic and a moving target that you must remain aware of if SEO is your lifeblood on the Internet.