Search Engine Optimization
I will, over the next three weeks, attempt to dispel secrets about SEO and share industry standard best practices that any small business can implement to better improve the performance of their website. First one must understand what Search Engine Optimization, commonly referred to as SEO, is and how it works.
SEO is the technical process of affecting the visibility of a website or webpage by search engines. This is achieved by using code and tags to define what your website is about, and how it is relevant to the person who is searching. Google has become the number one search engine by serving up relevant information.
So how does Google and other search engines determine what is relevant. This is referred to as the search algorithm (sequence of instructions for solving a computational problem) which is used to determine relevance to the search term. A search term is a set of words a person would use to find the subject matter or service they are in need of. The search engines never reveal all of the factors and their weight towards your rank. Only through experience, testing and analysis can one determine which factors yield the best results.
While there are numerous factors contributing to your page rank, PC COPS have identified the following 3 areas that yield the best results. For this first installment we will focus on the very first and simplest step of the process which is, can the search engines read your website?
The first step:
Every thirty to forty five days the search engines send out what are called robots, bots, or spiders. These robots read the code and content (the written part of the site) on your website to determine what your site is about. How do you know if the search engine robots can read your website? While images are appealing to your visitors robots cannot read text in images. The pictures on your site make the experience for the visitor much more enjoyable. So what do you do, get rid of all the images? Doing this could increase the ranking of your site however if a potential customer visits your webpage and leaves without calling you what good is the website being found? So in order to maintain the beauty of the site and make it so the search engine robots can read your page you must add something to each and every image on your website called Alt tags. An Alt tag is a text description of the image that the bots can read. This process is simple but takes time to accomplish. Content also needs to be tagged so the robot knows which text is important. Otherwise they may choose the wrong keywords for your target search audience.
This is of course only the first step to improving your websites ranking on the major search engines and any SEO company can accomplish this for you. One thing to keep in mind is that you speak with a web marketing company and they promise and guarantee you results that sound too good to be true, they probably are. Next week we will move on to step number two for improving your search results. Step two is about building credibility for your website by utilizing other sites on the internet.