As a small business owner we often need to explain what we do for a living. In my industry, internet marketing, it isn’t as easy as.. “I sell sports hats” or “take wedding portraits” but tends to lead to a lengthy conversation and educating potential consumers. It usually entails working on websites to make them more searchable by the search engines which in turn make the website reachable by the consumers. And still I’ll get asked later if I build websites because people don’t always get it.
It’s all about education
Not all of us are lucky enough to have a profession or product/service that easily explainable like a car mechanic or shoe salesman (no disrespect to those folks) but dern! I can’t really explain what I do in a 30-60 second elevator speech but that’s okay because with the right amount time and education about SEO, PPC, email marketing, website readability, social media marketing and the like, the more informed the consumer is to make a decision and that right there is the Best Value!Be sure you are educating your consumers – that’s the best value you can provide! Click To Tweet
The search functionality
- A person types a search into the search engine (that’s Google, Yahoo, Bing, Ask, etc) in order to help them find something.
- Those search engines then show the SERP, or search engine results page, that provides 10 organic (not paid) results with websites that best meet the needs of that search query
- The person searching hopefully finds what they are looking for within those first few, maybe 10 results. If not, they continue to page 2 or maybe 3 but that is likely as far as they will go before trying a more specific search phrase
How the search engines work
As you know, you type in a search phrase and quickly get what you want within a matter of seconds, so the information that the search engines provided must have previously been cached, stored. The search engines crawl every website and store that information until needed. If you are updated (or optimizing) your website on a regular, ideally monthly, basis, the search engines will see that it is being updated and crawl your website on a more regular basis.
Authority is given to websites which provide value to the consumers, update their website regularly and ones that have good functionality (for the lack of better words and simplification). Further, if your website is shown in the SERP and actually clicked through, search engines are happy, because they are providing their consumer, the searcher, with what they want to see.Give the consumers what they are looking for and keep the search engines happy. Click To Tweet
So what really IS SEO
Search engine optimization is basically optimizing your website for the search engines. While this is true, times have changed and there are mean people in the world following unethical standards, black hat SEO. So, this has caused search engines to be more particular about how they rank websites. However, one thing really hasn’t and won’t change – providing value to your consumers.
Optimize your website with value:
- Provide keyword rich, not spammy, content that is easily understandable to your consumers
- Create meta titles that clearly explain what each specific page is about
- Create keyword rich descriptions that clearly explain what each specific page is about
- Utilize your alt tags (picture identifiers) using words that describe the picture and the benefit of it being near that accompanying text
- Add header tags to help break up the text for the consumer to make it more scannable
- Update your website on a regular basis – ideally monthly but every other would be suffice if you can’t manage. A blog is a great way to continue to add value and quality content to your website
There are various other tactics, such as website readability, navigation, page speed and the like that can make your website more user friendly for the consumer. Similarly, these things also make it more search engine friendly as well, but as long as the reader/consumer is happy, the search engines will likely be as well.
Bottom line:Optimize your website to be seen by the search engines, in order to be seen by your consumers Click To Tweet
Hopefully this has provided a little more basic insight into search engine optimization, how to utilize SEO and benefit the reader and how search engines work. Let me know in the comments below…. What is your biggest struggle with SEO?