What is Search Engine Optimization?
Search Engine Optimization is the improvement of your online presence so that your web pages are more likely to be found by users that are searching for terms that closely relate to your business, organization, products, services, cause, etc. It is providing good information and presenting it in a way that the search engines find easy to index and categorize and then making this information as relevant as possible so that Google, Yahoo, Bing! and the other search engines have more confidence in your information and will place it at the top of their search engine results.
Search engines rely almost completely upon mathematical formulas to process the billions of pages on the web. It is the only way they can properly index this overwhelming amount of information. This being said, behind this math are intentions based upon twenty years of experience in assigning value to all of the details that go into SERP’s. What this means is even though a numerical value is given to a particular element online, there was thought put into how much weight that one item carries.
Those of us in the industry spend a great deal of time in researching and testing what works and and what can cause harm when it comes to these algorithms. Since the search engines do not provide the details of how the algorithms work, an entire industry designated as SEO was born to try and figure it out. It may sound like an odd situation. Why wouldn’t Google and the others want everyone to know the best way to have their website rank on their result pages?
It is quite simply to keep things fair. In a perfect world, they would want a page on “fly fishing hooks” to rank as naturally as possible, without having to optimize the page. If the algorithm was completely shared, it would basically come down to the companies with the deepest pockets catering to that algorithm and thereby knocking everyone else out. The search engines constantly let us in the industry know best practices to apply, but just like the credit rating companies, we are on our own to figure out the best way to get our websites to the top of the search results.
When Google evaluates your website, they determine it’s Quality it in terms of Expertise, Authority and Trust. Quality in combination with Relevance are what should always be kept in mind when doing search engine optimization.