Search engine optimization, or SEO, is what the websites appearing on page 1 of Google search results do very well. Becoming number 1 or being listed on page 1 is probably the dream of every web developer, web page owner and marketing expert and getting there is always a result of merit based on effort, consistency and through understanding of how search engines work, or, in web vocabulary, Search Engine Optimization.
SEO prepares and upkeeps your website so that it is easily found, navigated and remembered, or in one word – loved - by search engines. When your web site finally goes online, a number of processes, expertly called crawling, indexing, processing, calculating relevancy and retrieving results, are undertaken to include the site into the engines’ search databases and ‘googling’ results. Further, when a phrase search is conducted, Google, Yahoo and others measure the relevance of your site’s content to the phrase in question by using a complex, ever changing algorithm, designed to look into a number of criteria established as relevant for producing quality results. The fact that the algorithm changes as often as multiple times per month means that your page needs to be constantly maintained to keep up!
In turn, an increased number of relevant searches – thus interested visitors, thus potential business, will be directed to your site, further increasing its dynamics and appeal to search engines. It’s a loop really, and while it takes a while to get there, once you are in it, spinning becomes better and faster! SEO is a long term process which requires concentrated energies in several areas, and unlike AdWord campaigns which bring fast results but also fast drops once you stop paying, when done properly, SEO guarantees longstanding results with substantial immunity to algorithm upgrades.
While the name ‘Search Engine Optimization’ might mislead you into thinking that it’s all about pleasing the engines, your customers’ satisfaction is really the first parameter for successful SEO. Entailing a number of activities to make your site interesting, relevant, simple-to-use and most importantly – active, SEO demonstrates you follow trends and care for your customers’ expectations. To illustrate, at the present moment, when the number of tablet and smart phone users is increasing exponentially, Google is discounting pages which are not mobile optimized, as they find that this is directly related to customer satisfaction.
In short, SEO includes developing web site content, on-site optimization and link building and can broadly be categorized into On-Site SEO and Off-Site SEO.
On-Site SEO, often referred to as SEO copywriting, includes various types of textual content, such as blogs, published at least once per month for regular activity on the site, skilfully crafted headlines, subheadings, photo captions, metadata, but also illustrative domains, as well as interlinking the pages on your site for easy navigation. The keyword here is keywords, words and phrases crucial to the topic of your post, which need to appear a certain number of times to draw the search your way, but in a fashion which is attractive to the reader. There was a time when you could get away with just good 'keyword density', but nowadays search engines have superbly refined tastes, requiring textual content primarily to make sense, inform and entertain, and only then contain properly placed keywords!
Off-Site SEO could be described as 'cyber networking', intended to establish backlinks leading to your site from other webpages. But here especially, skill and caution are crucial, as the search engines’ attitude to back-linking could best be explained by paraphrasing an old saying: “the website is known by the company it keeps”. This means that the point is not to have innumerable back links, but to have a selected number of high-quality ones, from pages which practice good SEO, regular maintenance and have a respectable number of visitors.
We could go on and on here, about all the little details that make a difference between successful and unsuccessful SEO, but you could also contact us for a revision of your website and a SEO strategy proposal. In collaboration with our partner Walking and Writing, Jazz IT provides complete SEO services for existing web-sites, as well as those in-the-making, and we would be more than happy to aim for page 1 Google results with you!
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