Ask a digital marketer about search engine optimization, and buzzwords like the Panda algorithm, backlinks, or meta description will start flying around your ears. Chances are, if you’re not familiar with the concept already, you’ll likely leave a conversation like that more confused than you were entering it. That’s why we’re trying to help! Consider this blog post an SEO tutorial, designed to help you get a basic understanding of the concept so you can delve into specifics.
In short, search engine optimization (short: SEO) is the concept of designing a website and writing its content specifically optimized so that search engines like Google deem it relevant, and rank it highly for related searches. These search engines regularly "crawl" millions of website, using several algorithms to rank them based on their quality of content and influence on other websites. Savvy marketers know what Google is looking for, and optimize their websites specifically for these factors.
Often, you’ll hear marketers discussing SEO specifically referring to pleasing Google. There’s a simple reason for that: while it’s true that other search engines like Bing) exist, Google is the clear-cut leader in the field with a staggering 68 percent market share (and rising). Put simply, most potential customers are using Google for their search engine needs, so optimizing your website for Google simply makes good business sense.
How do you optimize your website? Here’s where most digital marketers start their conversation. First, you’ll have to know what keywords or phrases your audience looks for. Key phrases like "lawn care business in Pennsylvania" are often referred to as long-tail keywords, and are easier to rank highly for than single words like "lawn."
In the past, marketers sought to include these keywords in as many spots of the website (from the content to the code) as possible. But as Google has become smarter and began punishing website that overtly tried to "stuff" their keywords into the content, designing good content around the keywords has become more successful.
Building links also matters. To deem a site relevant, Google determines how many other sites link to its content. The more links your website gets, the more of an authority it is perceived to be. As a result, many SEO experts now focus on structured link building by sharing content via social media and other marketing channels.
Of course, this is just the beginning of the vast field known as SEO. To get a better insight into how optimizing your website can help your business, don’t hesitate to contact us!