SEO means Search Engine Optimization. It encompasses all practices of improving website traffic for various goals (like e-commerce, blogs, or branding) through organic search engine results.
The key premise behind SEO is knowing what people are searching for online, and what answers they are looking for. It also focuses on the words they use (keywords), and the types of content they enjoy consuming.
Armed with this knowledge you can then create solutions and content which people actively look for on search engines like Google.
Is SEO the same as Paid Search?
Although it involves search engines, SEO is not paid search marketing. You can easily tell paid search ads from organic results, as they have a small ad tag next to the link. Paid search ads operate through keyword bidding, and not through SEO, though concepts of quality and relevance still apply to paid ads.
How does SEO affect Search Engine Results?
Whenever you conduct an online search on any search engine, you will be shown a Search Engine Results Page or SERP. These SERPs rank the webpage results according to domain relevance and authority.
Search engines scour pages across the internet and sort them accordingly, this is known as crawling and indexing.
Basically, the search engine explores networks of pages through links which act as highway connectors. From there they are stored away in an index, to be called upon when we make a search. You might think of it as a giant “library” of content.
SEO makes the crawling and indexing process easier for search engines, and also aims to make your content a top choice when it comes time to make selections from the “library”.
SEO is all the more important as new SERPS show snippets of information and even related questions instead of just page links (as shown above). This means your page needs to be easy for search engines to read and pull information from.
Are all SEO Practices Good?
Although the goal of SEO is to improve web traffic, not all actions that increase web traffic are actually beneficial in the long run! Good and bad SEO do exist and they are known as white hat and black hat SEO.
White hat SEO means abiding by the rules provided by search engine operators and being sure that the webpage’s content and quality is up to standard.
Black hat SEO involves attempting to trick search engines into ranking a webpage through sneaky methods, or “cheating”. These may increase traffic in the short term but lower the overall quality of traffic in the future. Search engines may even penalize these pages if discovered!
We’ll help you understand how to do things the right way here.