What is SEO and Why is it Important for your Site?
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing a website with the end goal of helping it rank higher than its competitors when someone searches online. There are sets of rules that must be followed to increase your site’s ranking, and the rules may differ based on the search engine. SEO is a very complex process with a lot of moving parts, but it is well worth the time and money spent on it. There are many benefits both your site and your business will gain from investing in SEO.
Increased Website Traffic
Perhaps the most obvious reason to invest in SEO is to increase your website traffic. So many people these days find most everything they’re seeking online. They go to a specific website they like, or they use a search engine (such as Google, Bing or Yahoo!) to find the item, place, or information they are looking for. Most users will typically look at the first 1-2 pages of their search results to find what they are looking for. If your business does not show up in the first few pages, you are probably missing out on a lot of business. SEO could help rank your site higher and increase the number of people who find you online.
Even businesses that have obtained most of their past business through word of mouth are finding that their needs are shifting. More and more people are considering a search engine’s results as important a factor in choosing a company as word of mouth or any other channel of discovery. It is very important that a company invests in Search Engine Optimization services to draw proper traffic to their site.
Better User Experience
Following the guidelines for SEO, your site will actually provide a better user experience to the people who visit it. In an attempt to reward the sites that put efforts toward usability, organization, and high-quality content, most of the rules set forth by Google are focused on the details they think measure these characteristics.
For example, here are some common mistakes that will cause a site to drop in SEO rankings:
- Containing multiple spelling and grammatical errors in the content
- Not organizing the content into headers that make things easy to find
- Repeating the same content in multiple places on your site
- Making any links to other content hard to see
Writing and organizing your content using these rules will make your site more visually appealing and easier for your customers to find what they are looking for.
Why You Need an SEO Expert
Many small companies make the mistake of attempting to do their own SEO in-house. Unless you have an individual specifically trained on SEO, this could have devastating consequences.
Although some SEO rules are quite simple, there are so many of them that are so closely intertwined, if the person handling your SEO does not have a full grasp of all the rules, it would be easy to make a change that has a negative impact on your rankings rather than a positive one.
Sites can drop down in the rankings rather quickly when they have changes made to them, but it usually is a much slower process to climb back up. So before you have someone touch your site who claims they know what they are doing, make sure to do your homework and find the right SEO expert to work with.