Search engine optimization (SEO) is the practice of improving the visibility of your website in search engines, like Google, Yahoo and Bing, to generate free, or organic, traffic.
What does free, or organic, traffic mean?
Organic traffic refers to users who click your natural listings on search engine result pages (SERPs). Search engines usually have a section of paid search listings at the top and side of their search results. SEO is responsible for the listings that show up because they are naturally good pages with relevant content. You’ll see organic results right below the paid ads.
How do you “do SEO” on a website?
There are over 200 SEO signals that search engines use when evaluating websites. These signals are analyzed using complex algorithms to determine which websites are displayed on SERPs.
To properly apply SEO best practices, you must send all the right signals to prove your website is worth being displayed. There are good (and bad) strategies to that can greatly benefit (or hurt) your site and business. Some things are easy and quick to fix – updating page titles, descriptions and headings – while others are more difficult and take time – sending social signals, decreasing load time, and acquiring inbound links.
SEO is a long term strategy. Using proper SEO tactics throughout all your digital marketing will hep your site show up for more relevant search terms. There is no “set and forget” style of SEO if you want to be successful. The SEO arena is constantly changing. Whether you make changes to your site, your competition makes an adjustment, or the algorithm changes like it so often does, it is important to monitor your SEO health regularly and continually.
So if SEO has a formula, Does that mean there is a correct answer?
SEO is not an exact science, but more like a form of art. Search engines are promoting websites that have valuable content, aren’t over-optimized, and make sense to people. Balancing your use of keywords with site usability goes a long way.
Off-page SEO is something many people forget about, as it refers to digital properties possibly out of your direct control. Generating links from other websites, interacting on social media and submitting your business information to local directories all play a part in your website’s SEO. Using the same SEO strategies everywhere to reinforce your keywords can significantly improve your standing in SERPs.