Search engine optimization (SEO) is a marketing strategy employed by website designers, online marketers and advertisers to bring their website to the top or near the top of search queries in relation to their service or product. Potentially millions of other sites offer a similar product or service. Advancing your website to the front of search engine returns can be the critical difference in the survival or failure of your online business.
How a Search Engine Works
Search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo are primarily text driven; their software is oblivious to how cool your website looks, although esthetics are important once someone lands on your site . Google and other search engines repeatedly comb the internet for related text and links associated to the queries they receive. These search engines utilize a program often called a ‘web-crawler’ or ‘spider’. The web-crawler Google uses is ‘Googlebot’. This crawler software combs the internet – over 240 million sites and related links and builds an index. Crawlers may not visit a particular site daily; it could be 30 days between the times a crawler first indexes your site and returns to monitor any changes
After Your Site has Been Crawled
Once your site has been crawled its contents are then indexed, stored in a database for retrieval later. What is identified during indexing are words and phraseology that chronicles what is on the webpage. SEO is the science/art of helping a webpage’s indexed content become the most relevant answer to search queries. Many sites use their own ‘crawler’ or ‘spider’ simulators to get an idea of how they stand in the search engine indexing process.
The Subtle Differences in Search Engines can Complicate SEO
Generally, search engines operate in the same manner, but small differences in the algorithm of their indexing software can affect SEO for varying search engines. SEO for multiple search engines can be a maddening balancing act. Search sites have diverging priorities; SEO for Google can obliterate the work you did for Bing, Yahoo does not look for what Bing or Google registers. Google loves relevant links, while those are not as important to Yahoo or Bing. Yahoo is really keyword aware. Google prefers older established sites, while other search engines aren’t as concerned with longevity.
SEO – Are You Qualified?
SEO can be an intricate endeavor; but the fundamentals are pretty straightforward. You can educate yourself on the web. The most important factor is staying current on the changes in web crawler algorithms. Google has made nine algorithm changes this year as of the end of July 2013. Knowing the basics in SEO, gaining experience and staying current in search engine technology will soon see your web traffic and revenue increase.
Five Ways to Improve Your Site’s Search-ability
Google in particular tweaks their search algorithms regularly. However, there are several ways to stay on top of Google’s changes. The following are fundamental SEO techniques, regardless of Google’s tweaks.
- Use strong keywords at the beginning and end of articles on your site. However, be wary to not Keywords stuff your web content. Google reads that and detracts your site from the top of their search returns. Construct your content to sound naturally conversational. Keywords usage is an art, do not use them like a hammer.
- Use Google Adsense for direction on search terms that the public uses when searching for products and services like yours. Matching keywords usage on your site with the most commonly used search terms will improve your page rank.
- Make sure to tag any images on your site with strong keywords. Although Google does not rank esthetics, it does scan images. Use original content for your images.
- Research ways to construct keyword usage. There are very good several services that rank certain keywords for a product or service. Wordtracker and SEO20/20 are examples of keyword utility sites.
- Include testimonials for your service or product on your site. Many customers search for testimonials before they decide to buy.