The need-to-know about SEO

Not too sure what SEO means? We’ll explain!
Plus: 3 reasons why your business’ website needs this.

If you are not so familiar with world wide web lingo, you might think that SEO is some airport’s IATA code. That might be correct (Seguela, Ivory Coast – to be exact), although it’s much more likely to refer to “search engine optimisation”, which has more to do with where websites land than where airplanes do. Landing on Google, that is.

We all know that the internet is extremely crowded with gazillions of webpages, videos, directories, etc. Without search engines (like Google, Bing or Yahoo) that organise this content mass, you would hardly be able to find anything. (Let’s have a moment of thankfulness for their inventors!) But have you ever wondered how Google decides which results to offer you at the top of the page when you do a search? Well, the short answer to that is: They have a type of algorithm or set of rules by which they calculate this. And here is where SEO fits in – the process of ensuring a website plays according to the rules in order to obtain a high-ranking position on a search engine’s results page.

Many companies are willing to pay big bucks for SEO and for very good reasons. Likewise, many website designers become a bit cranky when clients are upset if their budget websites are “not featuring on Google!”

Here are three good reasons to buy your flight ticket to SEO:

1.  Increased traffic to your website.

More traffic = more potential clients. More clients = even more clients through good reviews. More traffic can also lead to increased linking to your pages which in turn heighten your website’s authority on Google even more and, again, lead to more viewers and more clients. You see, it’s a snowball effect. But you’ll have to keep it rolling by continually investing in SEO.

2. High return on investment.

SEO brings organic traffic to your website, as opposed to traffic generated by paid advertisements. Research has found it to be a very effective online marketing strategy and one that is cheaper than pay per click campaigns. And who is not interested in pay less, get more – right?! SEO is thus crucial to internet marketing and definitely worth the investment.

3. Immediate conversion of browsers to buyers.

People are on the move and want quick solutions – something which is very attainable through smart phones. Modern folks can go from seeking to finding within seconds and then call, visit or buy online whatever it is they have satisfactorily found through their search. But if you do not show up on their results page, they won’t be finding you! Let’s admit it, when most of us are looking for anything from a pizza to a plumber to a portable house, we are likely to start by asking the one with all the answers: wise, old Dr. Google. And then we obediently accept the first or second solution he offers.

Now that you know that SEO is not just an airport code and you have a good idea of why your business needs it, the next step will be to examine the HOW – i.e. the requirements for a website to be flying high on Google. This will be the topic of the next two parts in this series:

Part 2’s Blurb: Like a suitor romancing a lady, your website needs to contend for Google’s affection. Here are the on-page factors involved in this passionate pursuit.

Part 3’s Blurb: The romance between your website and Google continues with some off-page SEO reputation-building strategies!