Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization, which is frequently referred to as SEO, is the process of increasing the amount and quality of traffic generated to a website or other Internet based property from search engines’ natural/organic ranking results for specific words called keywords. For this article, I will use the term website to refer to all Internet based properties.

The popularity and importance of search engine optimization is based primarily on the fact that statistical data has proven time and time again that the higher a website is ranked in search engine ranking results, the more likely the chance that individuals will click the website link and visit the website.

Moreover, marketing research has shown over the past decade that the quality of visitors that search engines deliver to websites traditionally ranks as the best or one of the best sources of traffic for websites in relation to website conversions for sales, signups or other marketing goals set for websites.

The term SEO in relation to search engine optimization is also used at times to refer to search engine optimizers, who are consultants that mange and facilitate the development and completion of search engine optimization projects for their clients. Also, these individuals can be employees who conduct SEO projects in-house for their employers.

Search engine optimizers may provide their services strictly for search engine optimization or as part of a package, which includes other marketing services.

In general, SEO was created as a method of improving websites’ search engine ranking results. Moreover, at the core of conducting search engine optimization, there are two general methods used to optimize websites, which are on-site and off-site optimization.

As the terms imply, on-site optimization involves using techniques that are focused directly on the website and off-site optimization involves aspects that effect a website that are not directly on the website.

The reason why search engine optimization has a noticeable effect of improving a website’s rankings is because all search engines have at the core of their existence a computer program, which is called an “algorithm”. This program manages to a large degree almost all the various operations of search engines.

Thus, SEO is used by individuals and businesses to optimize websites for search engine ranking results based on either perceived or actual knowledge pertaining to the functions, directions, retrieved website data and instructions utilized by search engine algorithms to determine a website’s search engine ranking for keywords or keyword phrases.

What makes search engine optimization very challenging is the fact that every search engine has an algorithm that was created specifically for its own search engine; so each algorithm is unique and ranks websites using different criteria and factors and/or places various levels of importance on the criteria and factors.

Moreover, search engines are very protective of their algorithms; so all aspects of the algorithms’ operations are tightly guarded. Therefore, the algorithms are always being changed from time to time to prevent anyone from trying to determine the exact or close to the exact factors and criteria used to rank websites in their ranking results.

The better an individual can evaluate how search engine algorithms determine their search engine ranking results and can utilize search engine optimization to optimize websites based on his or her evaluation findings, the better the likelihood of the individual being able to improve a website’s rankings through the use of search engine optimization.