According to Statistic Brain, the average Google searches per day in 2012 surpassed 5 billion! I'm sure you can already see why it is so important that your website is showing up in the Google search result pages (SERPs). So, what exactly is SEO and why is it so important to the success of your business? Let's find out.
What is SEO?
Search engine optimization (SEO) can be defined as the process of optimizing and enhancing your website (both on-page and off-page) in order to boost your website rankings in the search engine result pages (SERPs) for given search terms (keywords).
Why is SEO so important to your business?
The majority of search engine users click on the first result that shows up in the SERPs. If not the first result, most definitely any result on the first page is clicked. Rarely do users go on to the second and third pages in order to find a relevant search result for their query. I'm sure you can imagine the traffic a website receives if it can claim the top spot in a search result page for a search term.
If your website sits as the #1 search result for a keyword that has a decent monthly search volume, it's very likely you will receive a ton of organic traffic to your website. More website traffic equals more targeted consumers discovering your business. This ultimately turns into profits, which is why you can't afford to ignore SEO.
How is SEO accomplished?
There are an infinite number of strategies and techniques that go into a successful SEO campaign. In a nutshell, the goal of an SEO is to rank a website for given keywords (terms users key into search engines).
Therefore, keyword research is performed by an SEO in order to find the most profitable, yet manageable keywords to rank for. Once suitable keywords are found, an SEO optimizes the website for those keywords. This is done both "on-page" and "off-page."
- On-page techniques typically involve placing keywords strategically throughout the content, while keeping the content reader-friendly. Keywords are added in meta titles, descriptions, alt-tags, headlines and in the content body itself, among other locations. Other factors come into play as well, such as the speed of your website and the readability of the HTML code.
- When it comes to off-page techniques, backlinking is often the first action that is carried out. Backlinks are links located on external websites that link back to your own website. When Google bots "crawl" the web, the more links in which they discover pointing to your website, the more authoritative your website will appear. However, the area of backlinking became filled with spam, which is why the quality of links is now far more important than the quantity. In addition to backlinking, establishing a social media presence is a huge game player as well. The importance of social media in relation to SEO is only going to increase, especially in terms of Google+.
When it comes to SEO, many techniques can be learned by anyone. However, there is much more that goes into a successful SEO campaign than is outlined in the above. It is recommended that you hire a trusted SEO expert to ensure a profitable SEO campaign.
Far too often, businesses place all of their marketing budgets into advertising campaigns and completely ignore SEO. Potentially, far more website traffic can be obtained through search engines than through advertising campaigns, which is why ignoring SEO is costing your business more money than necessary.