What is Search Engine Optimization?
Search Engine Optimization, often referred to as SEO, is an ever-changing way to get your website to perform the best it can on the Search Engine Result Pages, also known as SERP. If you came to this page, you are either wanting to learn more about SEO or you are wanting to know what we can do to help.
When you search for something on Google, what’s the first thing you click on? If you are like over 90% of all searchers, then you are clicking a result on the first page. This number represents an average, but when it comes to people doing web searches for local businesses, this number is higher. Think about it – unless you are doing research, how often has your own web searching led you to the second page of Google search results? Probably not very often.
Different people click on different things, but more will click on the top three results that Google provides because they know that those results likely have the information they are looking for. Alternatively, some might click on the map results if they’re looking for a store or business nearby. Our goal is to try and get your website to be one of the top results, or better yet the first result. It’s important to understand that there are many other businesses doing the same thing. Once our SEO experts start optimizing your website with the necessary keywords, link-building, and more, you’ll notice an increase in calls over a period of time. That is the goal of SEO, the magic of SEO, and the song which makes business owners sing. It makes sure your site gets seen.
What About The Map Section Of The Search Results?
The map section is another part of SEO most businesses do not even think about. Coming up in the top three results in the map section is a wonderful thing. The map section is powered by Google My Business, which allows businesses to communicate directly to Google about their business. Your website and Google My Business listing should be in sync with each other – both telling the same thing about your company. Your Google My Business listing, which is directly tied to Google Maps, also plays a key role in Search Engine Optimization.
Can I Just Do It Once And Be Done With SEO?
This is one of the most common questions, and the answer is no, not really. A website can have many great features, but search engines are constantly reevaluating their expectations. A business must continuously optimize their website to stay competitive. Think about it as dieting or exercise, you can’t try it once an expect the perfect results. Dieting and exercise is an ongoing process in being healthy or healthier. SEO is the same way.
Software updates for search engines are also constantly updating, and for a good reason. They need to stay ahead when it comes to security issues, as well as update continuously to make a better experience for every person using the internet.
Many people think once that once a website is built nothing else needs to be done. They don’t consider the fact that search engines get updated often, and so their website needs to match any new expectations. For example, Google Chrome gets updated with minor updates every two to three weeks, and has major updates/releases every six weeks. Websites must keep up with these changes. If they don’t, over time, they will not look good in the updated web browsers.
Is Search Engine Optimization Expensive?
When we talk about the cost of SEO, we must have an understanding of the business. A business can have a good website with minimal SEO if showing up in a product/service-related search result isn’t important to them.
The cost of SEO will vary depending on two factors: the size of the geographical area the business serves and the level of competition in the market of the same or similar business. Most SEO is done on an ongoing basis as there are constant updates and changes which need to be made to keep the website performing at its optimal levels. As competition changes, the amount of work needing to be done will need to be changed.
In practical terms, if the business is a candy store specializing in old fashion candy and there isn’t another candy store around for miles, then minimal efforts may be needed up front and on an ongoing basis. If the business is an attorney, in a large city, then it will take a lot of work up front and on an ongoing basis to secure placement on the first page of Google. As Google is constantly updating its algorithms, the website must update them as well to meet the updated expectation Google is setting.
Why Are You Referencing Google Mostly On This Page?
Google, Google, Google. This pretty much says it all. Probably most people won’t even question this really. With different places citing different facts, Google’s usage as a search engine is in the 70+% on desktop and even higher on mobile devices, making it the top search engine in the US. The other search engines being used are a mixed blend so most SEO experts focus on Google and tend to do well with the other search engines as well. The things being done to optimize a website may not be exact for all the search engines, but if one gets it right for Google, the results with the other search engines follow suit.
What About SEM? What Is It?
SEM stands for Search Engine Marketing, and in theory, SEO is probably a part of SEM. Most people think of SEM as methods of advertising to drive web traffic (to be store visits, appointments, jobs, sales, etc,) through paid advertising. An example of this would be Google Adwords or Bing Ads.
A more specific definition is marketing on the internet to increase the visibility of the website through search engine pages, primarily through paid advertisement. There are other ways to advertise a website and there are many companies saying their way is a good way. We have developed a specific testing process to measure the results of these ‘good’ ways, and check to see if they drive results. Some of them work in certain markets better than others, and some of them work better for different business types than others. Our learning over the years has helped us creating best testing scenarios to measure any type of online marketing a company chooses to do.
A Bit Confused?
If someone were to ask us about installing a shower faucet and explained to us how to do it, many of us wouldn’t get it, nor would we want to do it. We would find a plumber to help us out. The same might be true for you and Search Engine Optimization. If you want it to work, meaning show up in higher search results and get your business more web traffic, then give us a call to learn more about how we can help you with your business’ goals when it comes to Search Engine Optimization.