If you look online for ways to promote or market a small business, chances are you will very quickly run into SEO. This is one of the most popular buzzwords out there today on the net when you look at marketing and promotion strategies.
That being said, despite it’s near universal presence online, there remains an awful lot of mystery around this term – at least amongst the uninitiated. Here then are some of the most frequently asked questions about SEO to help you get a handle on this popular phenomenon.
What is it? Definitely one of the questions asked the most, and there’s no shame in that at all! The first thing to note is that SEO is an acronym. The three letters stand for Search Engine Optimization. Does that makes things a little more clearer? No, I guess not!
Lets consider it this way. I’m sure you’ve searched for a topic or term on Google before? If so, you’ve seen the results page that comes up and the lists of websites below that contain material that relates to your search term.
Well at it’s very core, SEO is about making some websites appear higher up on that search pages then other websites. It’s essentially a marketing tool designed to get eyes onto a website before any others.
What is an Organic Result? Nothing to do with food, unfortunately. Sticking with our lesson from Google, let’s return to the search page we opened in the example above.
On the first page you will see some search results at the top of the page, highlighted in a dull yellow color. Depending on the popularity of the term you searched for there could be a couple or there could be several results to see here.
These results are paid advertisements – i.e. a company has paid good money to get their results at the very top of the page. Google (and other search engines) highlights this fact with the colored background and also by outright stating that these are advertisements.
Below these advertisements are the rest of the results. They are on the normal backgrounds of the search engine – so plain white in Google’s case. These results, and the websites they link to, have not paid to be where they are. They are there because they are popular answers to search queries.
This is what is known as an Organic Result, and it is what companies want very much. After all, why pay to be at the top of the pile, when you can get there for free? SEO is one of the techniques that can be used to get a company or website closer to the top. You can find out more about organic vs paid search results on Local Muscle Consulting – website.
What are Meta Descriptions? Still on our page of search results, you will see that beneath each result is a brief text description. This is where SEO can come into play, as this brief description box will contain key words that match the search engine results – kind of like throwing out bait to catch a fish. Articles will be crafted to contain these words to have a better chance of being seen.
And that, in a nutshell, is what SEO is all about!