Search engine optimization, or SEO, is the process of improving a website’s ranking in search engine results through enhancement of the website’s structure, code, and content. When Google or another search engine recognizes website content as authoritative and relevant to a particular search, it will display that website at the top, or near the top, of the list of search results. SEO is an on-going process that requires constant modification as search habits, competition, and search engine algorithms change. According to Google Ranker, the following are some of the key components of SEO.
Keywords are the individual words (“roofing”) and phrases (“tile roof repair in Atlanta”) that users type into a search field. Companies who want to improve their search engine rankings must first decide which keywords they want to rank for. The best keywords should be relevant to the company’s business and to the customers the business is targeting. General keywords like “roofing” are not recommended because there is far too much competition. A keyword that includes some specific terms and a geographic reference (“tile roof repair in Atlanta”) has less competition and stands a better chance of ranking well.
Once a keyword has been chosen, the website needs content that features the desired search term. Content can include articles and blog posts, images, and videos that feature the keyword in the text or ALT tag (a bit of HTML code used to identify an image for a search engine). It’s important to create high-quality content that is interesting, engaging, and helpful to customers. Relevant, well-written content helps to build a website’s authority in the eyes of the search engine.
Another component of authority is the number of quality links that point to a website. When a website is referenced by many other legitimate websites through backlinks, search engines will prioritize that website in search results. Some businesses get backlinks by issuing press releases, commenting on relevant blog posts, and networking with other businesses to exchange links.
SEO is a complex set of activities that can yield a solid return on investment over time. Many companies can’t devote the time to researching keywords, creating content, and building links, so they hire the services of a reputable SEO marketing firm. See Google Ranker for more information.