Major search engines like Google have what’s called primary search results, a list of sites returned after a query is fed into the search bar. The items on the list include web pages, local listings and videos. The results are ranked according to what the search engine thinks is relevant to users. A number of factors are involved in determining “relevance” and the process of using those factors to improve rankings and drive traffic is what’s known as search engine optimisation (SEO).
One of the most important aspects of SEO is making it easy for search engine robots to understand what a site is all about. Although the level of sophistication of robots is much higher than it was in the past, it still can’t process a web page like a human can – it needs all the help it can get. This is where SEO comes in by helping robots figure out the contents of a page and determine how that could be helpful to users.
A Simple Example of How SEO Can Help
Let’s say you wrote an article that provided tips on photographing cats. Another person seeing that post will know exactly what it’s all about. But how can a machine make sense of that when it sees a combination of numbers and letters? With the help of SEO, you can give the machine hints through keywords and links to understand the content of your article.
SEO involves understanding what a search engine can and cannot do so that you can create content that is easier for them to digest. With this, you can build content that can be easily understood and as such, increase the chances of getting a spot on the first results page.
Why Is SEO Important?
- It considers the needs of the target audience. Businesses should always ask what their customers want. There are lots of tools available these days that would provide the answers you’re looking for. It could be as simple as taking a look at demographics to determine what kind of content is suitable for your audience. But it doesn’t just stop at content: the design of the site should be both friendly to the audience (colours, themes, text) and search engine robots (crawlability, user friendliness).
- It is an integral part of the marketing strategy. In today’s marketing world, there is more than one channel that you need to be on for effective targeting. Even though you write the most convincing content for your target audience that can still amount to nothing without social signals – likes, shares, etc.
- It impacts customer behaviour. Customers are looking to save more money and as such, are more conscious when it comes to making purchases. They tend to do a bit of research before committing and it’s up to you to convince them. This is possible through the use of carefully crafted content that uses relevant keywords and phrases.
There is value and a number of benefits that can be gained from investing in SEO. Yes, competition for attention on the web is at a high but knowing how to improve ranking through the proper understanding an application of ranking factors will result in an increase in both traffic and visibility.