November 2020 // The Business Edition

WHAT IS SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION (SEO)?

SEO is the art or technique(s) used to drive organic traffic to your website in order to obtain a high ranking position on search engine results pages for search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Simply stated, SEO helps to connect you with the people who are looking for you. I specifically use the word “art” because there is no one formula that can be applied the same way to every business that would warrant the best result. Depending on the type of business (service or product based), who they are targeting, what objectives they have, and how saturated the market is will determine what course of actions should be taken. In fact, I’ve never treated any of my SEO clients the exact same way. I do however have a proven framework that can be applied to any business. (Don’t worry, I will share that framework with you in this article.) I also specifically reference SEO as being techniques you use in order for your website to obtain a high ranking position on major search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. The reality is, there are hundreds of search engines on the web. In fact, all online platforms need one, especially if they give their visitors a way to search the content they are hosting. Although most online platforms have search engines in place in order to help online visitors find the information that they are looking for (like YouTube, Pinterest, or Instagram), Google is the largest search engine used in the world today with over 90% of the total search engine market share. As a result, Google has positioned itself as the authority and helps to guide the other platforms in forming their own algorithms. In addition, Google is a major gatekeeper for pretty much everything published on the web, whereas the other platforms are simply the gatekeepers to the content published only on their own platforms. For example, Instagram only shows content that was published on Instagram and sorts this content by its own algorithm factors. Google, however, aims to primarily display search results based on webpages, which come from websites. The word organic is widely used when it comes to the food we eat, but it is also used in the world of tech to mean that things occur naturally with coding. When it comes to digital marketing, we use the term “organic” interchangeably with the word “free,” since many tactics used to increase visibility are paid for. There are over 200 factors or algorithms that Google uses to determine where a site should be placed on a search engine results page listing. These algorithms are ever-changing in importance and Google does a great job keeping the ranking order of importance a secret. Google does, however, provide us with clues on what factors we should pay attention to through special announcements and regular public updates.

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