The Importance of SEO
By: Sarah Rotter
In this new age of unlimited, accessible information, it has become common place for a business to try to use the internet as a cheap and easy resource to advertise to potential customers. Putting up a website is a fairly easy task, but once it is up on the web, there is no guarantee that it will be seen unless you pay to advertise on a specific sight. Search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo use an intricate algorithm to scan the vast network of websites to optimize the results for the searcher, and if the website for a business doesn’t have the proper content, it will not be shown in the search results even though said business might be relevant to what the potential customer is searching. SEOs are important because through it Businesses get found.
The first thing to understand is the potential customers, and the potential keywords they are going to use on their websites. “90-95% of businesses… miss out on a huge opportunity because they go after key words that are too competitive or use browser keywords” (SEO Sauce 2013). Longer more specific key words are a lot more effect than the short generic keywords because it makes a website easier to locate. Another important tip is to consider misspellings. If you are advertising “Furniture Repair”, include “Furnature” in the tags because typos are quite common.
Another important SEO factor are links. Links matter because a link is usually considered a recommendation from the site. Links from trustworthy sites have more weight in the “algorithm recipe”.
Finally, reputation is important. “Sites with consistent record of fresh engaging content and reliable links can be considered ‘rising stars’ on the internet” (Common Craft 2013). Just like with anything else in life, you get out what you out in. If you keep up with the site and consistently update it, people will take notice, as well as the search engines.
You have to be able to track your site when you start to use SEO. Being able to see your progress is very important. There is no point in trying to improve your site if you can’t see any of the results. Also patience is a virtue in the practice. You might not see results for a few months, so keep in mind that these things take time.
When in doubt, go with a professional SEO service.
"Getting SEO wrong can mean more than simply not getting the rankings you want. It can mean being penalised and not showing in the search results at all. Add the wrong character to your .htaccess file and your site might not even load. Do the same to your robots.txt and it might never get indexed. In some cases, the cost of fixing your own errors could far outweigh the modest investment needed to get it right in the first place" (Vanderkolk 2014).
It is much more worth it to leave this kind of work up to people with experience if you really want your site to be noticed.
Common Craft, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hF515-0Tduk, 2013.
Seosauce, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aBNOoNBx_nQ, 2013.
Vanderkolk, "Sydney SEO – Why You Shouldn’t Try to Go It Alone" 2014.