SEO is a much bandied-about word nowadays. “Grow Your Business With SEO!” “Learn The Latest SEO Techniques!” “Earn More With SEO And Lead Generation!” All very important-sounding, and very attractive in the well-everyone’s-doing-it way that exclamation points have.
Here, let’s break down the term SEO, and discuss what it does and why it is so important to businesses. After all, the best and quickest way to understand a term is to uncomplicate it.
What Does SEO Stand For?
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Let’s break that down even more.
The first term that we need to learn is “search engine.” A search engine is a site that indexes the billions of web pages on the world wide web, much like the index at the end of a school textbook. The job of the search engine is to bring up the most relevant and useful results according to the search entered.
The largest and most well-known is Google (they are big enough to have bought Youtube). Others are Yahoo!, Bing, Ask.com, and others. Some are better at their jobs at others. Google, known for its strict measures whenever it finds a site trying to fool the algorithms, is one of the best.
This purpose of search engines—to bring up the most relevant and useful results—means that web pages should be designed to conform with those requirements. That is, in a nutshell, what “optimization” means: to design something so that it works the best it possibly can within its limits and constraints.
Now that we know that, let us put all the words together and look at Search Engine Optimization, or SEO. SEO is the art of writing and designing web page content so that it becomes easier for search engines to find and rank them as authority sites. The higher authority a search engine gives the web page, the higher its rank when the keyword is entered into the search engine.
What Are the Elements of SEO?
The most important element of SEO is content-writing. Google has become so smart that it can actually read how long viewers stay on a certain web page. If many web users click your link but click out with not enough time to read, Google lowers its authority. In other words, the content should give actual value to those who stumble upon it. Hence the SEO catchphrase, “Content is King.”
Another element of SEO is keyword research and optimization. Like in that textbook index, Google sorts the billions of webpages by their keywords. Keyword research ensures Google can find your page and index it properly for viewers.
Other elements of SEO are image optimization both for search engines and for the speed of webpage loading, the right way to use and write headings, the best way to write headlines, and so on and so forth. Basically, SEO makes it easier for Google to find and rank your webpages.
Should You Use SEO?
Yes, definitely! Whether you are running an e-commerce site, have a website for your physical business, or simply write on your personal blog, SEO is a valuable tool. After all, you are writing to be read. Why not make it easier for search engines to help you out?