Website search engine optimization (SEO) is the subject of MILLIONS of keyword searches every month (Google Keyword Tool: May 23rd 2012)
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a process for producing website pages that function effectively with search engines. Yes it's that simple -- no magic or mystery. However, to fully understand SEO you also need to know how search engines work.
Search engine providers such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing use programs called "searchbots" or "bots" or "spiders" to visit every website to collect data about the website pages, links, images and site information.
The information collected via this "crawling" activity is stored in an "index".
This search index is the heart of the search engine since it is referenced every time a user enters a search term in the search page.
The search index guides the search engine to present the most relevant web pages for the given search term on a search engine results page (SERP).
In the above example, the resulting web pages referenced are those where the keywords "website", "search", "engine", "optimization" have been identified and tagged in the search index.
The results include web pages that include one or more of the keywords grouped together in a phrase (e.g. website search, search engine, search optimization etc.)
If the search term entered by the search user is altered slightly (i.e. enclosed in double quotes), this signals the search engine to focus on results that have the EXACT matching phrase.
If you were conducting competitive research for website search optimisation, the above example is actually a better representation of the number of web pages that are relevant for this search term.
The order in which the results are presented is based on page relevance (or "page ranking").
Page ranking is governed by the search engines and the full extent and details of the "scoring" system is a closely guarded secret.
some of these factors (e.g. relevant content) are well known and
understood. To learn more, read the article "Google's Ranking System".
Search engine optimization isn't a complex topic to understand
It's a simple fact -- the goal of SEO is to generate a highly-ranked and relevant web page for a select set of specific keywords.
Web Page Design and Website Search Engine Optimization
For a website page to be viewed as relevant for specific keywords it must be structured to satisfy human readers first and search engines second.
Why is this the case? Because people search websites for relevant content and search engines are in the business of finding and presenting relevant content. A search engine that presents search results "off topic" will quickly lose favour and faith with the demands of the searching public.
Web page design is also an important element for SEO as it encourages the reader to stay on the page to find the information they need. Good web designers know that web page content should be presented clearly using good web typography (font size, font style, font color), have appropriate emphasis to guide the reader (e.g. bold, underline, italics, headlines, buttons, links), have proper grammar, correct spelling and punctuation. A poorly designed web page that is unordered, jumbled and with poorly written content is a sure fire way to get a quick exit by the reader.
These exits or "bounces" effectively cast a negative point about your web page with the search engines and can impact page ranking. Poor page ranking will affect where your web page appears on SERPs with the major risk being that your website does not benefit from any search engine traffic. Since web traffic is the lifeblood of a website, you cannot ignore the importance of web page design and its impact on search engine optimization.
I'm happy to share my 12 Tips for Creating the Best Business Website as a free gift. And I do mean 'free' - there's no strings attached - not even a request for your name and email address!
If you need help, advice, a friendly push in the right direction, to rant or rave about a product or service ... please don't be shy about contacting me. Perhaps I can help you achieve your business goals.
You can do it ...
Feedback is important: If you think this content was useful to you, feel free to LIKE and Share with friends, colleagues and family members.