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Friday, 10 August 2018

Introduction to Search Engine Optimization

 Search Engine Optimization

Introduction

Imagine that you would like to find information on red widgets. Since you don't know any online resources for red widgets, you will have to use a search engine. How will you do this?

Most likely you will use either Google, Yahoo, or MSN. After searching, you will see a number of different things on your screen. The top section of your results will most likely display pay-per-click ads. This simply means that any link you find here was put here by somebody paying for it. You will also find these ads usually running down the right side of the screen. However, the largest section of the results page is in the center, where you will find the natural search engine results. You notice that there are thousands, if not millions of results returned. Each individual search engine must have a way of ordering these websites in order to display the most relative results to you.

This is where the term search engine optimization (or Search Engine Optimization) comes in. This leads us to the first frequently asked question.

What is SEO?

Search engine optimization is the art of employing certain methods which, in the end, have the intent to move your own website as high as possible in the search results for specific keywords or keyword phrases. This is also what is meant when you hear ads about "boosting your ranking" or something similar.

These methods cover a wide range of factors, including both on-site optimization and off-site optimization. What is also interesting about search engine optimization is that there really are very few objective factors which affect your rankings. Webmasters and SEOs have a pretty good idea of what factors have at least minimal impact on your rankings - but the significance of each factor is largely disputed. So why do you hear about SEO firms and companies that claim to be able to help your ranking?

Many theories on search engine optimization are actually theories. Meaning, they have actual data to back up any conclusions. Other than the largely accepted theories, different people develop their own hypothesis on what they feel to be important. These are often supported by many different SEOs but often do not have any evidence or data to back it up.


How do you know what to do?

Google, the single largest and most used search engine, has provided webmasters with quality guidelines for getting your site included in their results. This should be the most basic set of guidelines any webmaster should follow Search Engine Optimization. There are, however, many factors which the majority of search engine optimizers agree on. These factors are based on research, observation, and accounts of experiences from webmasters and search engine optimizers.

What are the factors?

Although this list could be overwhelmingly long, the factors below are a brief list of basic factors which are known to have some type of effect on website ranking. Keep in mind, that Search Engine Optimization each search engine most likely weights each factor differently, which is partly why you see different results at Google, Yahoo, and MSN. More information on how to optimize these factors can be found in the articles section....

The full version of this article (3 pages) is here: SEO FAQ