Posted on August 12, 2016
When we say ”Search Engine Optimization” sometimes we get confused or blank looks, and more often than not, we get the same question: “What’s that, and why does it matter?”. It’s okay to not understand or even know about search engine optimization (SEO for short) as it’s a fairly simple yet complex tool used primarily by site developers. It is, however, absolutely critical to your website’s success, so we thought we’d sit down and explain not only the basics of what SEO is, but also why it’s so critical. Put on your learning caps, here we go!
Now, we’ve all entered a question or a phrase into Google, or Bing, or some form of search engine or another; and every time we do, we get a whole slew of web pages that pop up. These pages are all linked, in some shape or form, to what we’ve typed in. Just how that works is where the complexity comes in. Search engines operate on a complex algorithm designed to weed out the unnecessary and put the most relevant information on the top of the viewer’s web page. Just how the search engine determines this, is based on the SEO of the website in question. Let’s use our own site as an example.
Let’s say you type into google something about shoes, our site won’t pop up as we don’t specialize in selling shoes, or are a shoe company; however, if you type in ‘advertising’ we’ll pop up as we’re an advertising company! This is because of the key words we’ve linked to our business, and how we program our website. Key words and programming, however, aren’t the only things that come into play with SEO. Traffic, new content and the activity of the site are also considered by the search engine when it’s trying to figure out how to best answer the viewer’s question or find what they’re looking for. So let’s say you type ‘advertising’ into Google; our site isn’t the only one that will pop up. Several other sites will come into view, ranked by activity, relevance and traffic. So a more viewed or possibly more active advertising company’s page will come out in front of ours, just as our page will come out in front of a newer, less experienced advertising company’s webpage.
This is where the critical element comes into play. You obviously, as a business owner, want your site to come up on top as much as possible – as the majority of the searching population typically click the first viable looking link on a search engine. It’s in optimizing your webpage to make the search engine believe your site is the most relevant that you draw in the most traffic. The more traffic that you draw in, the more active your site will appear to the search engine’s algorithm, which gives your site a higher chance of appearing when someone enters a word relating to your site.
Now there are several ways that you can improve your SEO, or improve your chances of getting seen via SEO. One is, as we’ve mentioned, increasing your site traffic. This can be through links to your site from other sites, or through varying topics on your site itself that draws in viewers through different medias; such as blogs, videos, etc. The more relevant information you have on your site, the higher chance you have of drawing in traffic. Think of Wikipedia for a moment; ever notice how whenever you google something or someone, (unless it’s sales or business related) a lot of the time you see Wikipedia pop up? This is because of the broad expanse of information available on the page and the high level of traffic the site itself experiences; thus telling the search engine that it’s a good source of information.
Now Wikipedia doesn’t just rely on traffic and its vast base of information, there’s also some heavy programming involved in the background, unseen by the typical web page viewer. SEO can be utilized at an optimal level when coding comes into play, as it can directly link a specific word or phrase to the webpage itself. The best way to explain it would be to use a company name as an example. Let’s say you google “Sly Fox”, you’re going to see the webpages of all the companies or accounts that include the term ‘sly fox’ in it. There are a couple of YouTube users, and a couple of other companies that specialize in other aspects of business than us that share similar names with us; but they all have one thing in common: the words ‘sly’ and ‘fox’.
Now, we know that thinking about all of this while trying to balance books, keep up to date on stock, appointments, services, etc; can be overwhelming. Don’t worry, that’s why we’re here to help! As we’ve mentioned, and as our name suggests, advertising (like SEO) is what we live and breathe. While it’s a good idea to know and understand what’s at play when it comes to your website, it’s okay to not know every aspect of it; that’s our job! Just like yours is specializing in your area, ours is to help your company get the recognition and traffic that it deserves. When our graphic designer and programmer work on one of our client’s sites, they look at what they can do to increase awareness and draw in a larger customer base; it’s alongside our writer, who looks at bringing relevant and entertaining blogs or site content to the table, which includes keywords that will trigger the search engine’s algorithm, that we try to maximize this effect. To put the cherry on top, our social media expert works on social media to include external posts, tweets, etc; that include links to your site, thus furthering the SEO effect.
Now this is a lot of information to take in, so we’ll leave you to mull it over for now. Just remember: the more involved and active your site is, and the more it can be linked to information that the search engine believes is relevant, the more traffic you’ll draw in. The more traffic you draw in, the further you’ll be bumped up the list due to popularity, and the most potential customers you’ll earn along the way. The possibilities of growth and expansion are endless with SEO, all you need to do is keep it in mind whenever you tinker on your webpage. For now, however, we wish you luck in all your endeavors!