Web Design With SEO In Mind
Banking on Ranking in Website Development
What you should know about SEO.
Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is more than just the most popular Internet marketing buzzword since the World Wide Web was developed. SEO has, for all practical purposes, become a science. Getting your Google on has become so important in the cyberspace marketplace, suddenly it seems, there are thousands of self-proclaimed website design and optimization gurus in the social media landscape. They all are hard at it, parsing equations, formulating theories and testing hypotheses to present themselves as the only person who really understands this SEO creature correctly.
It is difficult to spend any time on any social media sites, such as Twitter, without hitting a website development 'expert' wanting to share their optimization theories; for a 'reasonable price' of course. This is because, if you do website architecture and SEO properly, with eye-catching, visitor-friendly text and images, your website really will float to the top of search engine rankings. This is critical, as the higher up your site is positioned; the more likely your web presence will translate into increased client engagement and better results for your bottom line.
SEO experts; the new kids on the block.
It is worth mentioning that SEO was practically unheard of before the new millennium, and now consultants, who claim to be knowledgeable about it, are commanding top dollar. Some know their stuff but others seem to specialize more in being jargon mongers. Since ranking improvement expertise is such a new discipline, there are very few ways for web design gurus to demonstrate proficiency or become officially accredited. Often it becomes a battle of buzzwords as company marketing managers wade through the various SEO experts' opinions.
With the rise of search ranking improvement as the Holy Grail of web marketing, it brings up many questions for advertising and marketing specialists in practically every industry. Old school sales teams are trying to come to grips with the fundamentals of this new science. They want to know what SEO is, how it works, whether it is important to their business and why.
What it is, man.
Put simply, Search Engine Optimization is a method of tweaking your website design using various techniques to force your way to the top of Internet search pages such as Google, Yahoo and Bing. SEO specialists study how very specific layouts of a website's information will affect the search engine rankings. They know that making even minor adjustments to the design of a website can have a demonstrable effect on placement, for good or bad. These adjustments include such fine-tuning as changing keywords here or there, locating the keywords closer to the top left of a website and including your most important keywords in ALT descriptions on your page's visuals.
To Keywords... and Beyond!
There is so much more to SEO than just keywords and where they go, however, as was the case in the Internet's early days. Now there are hundreds, if not thousands of factors that influence your site's positioning. These factors are all based on a myriad of mathematical formulas, referred to as 'algorithms' that search engines perform billions of times a day. How many visitors you get, how long they stay, where they go after they have been to your site all are reflected in your search engine rank, Just attracting someone to your site isn't good enough like it was in the old days of the Internet. Now, search engine crawlers and robots perform a whole litany of tests to try and establish what sites are the most relevant to a human user. It is so much more than just keywords, click through rates and bounce amounts.
Too much of a good thing.
This brings us to the most important fact about SEO. Attempts to optimize your website artificially, using only SEO tricks, are destined to fail. It does not work to design your website to attract a robot when it is living, breathing humans that you are trying to engage with. Getting people to your site is only a part of what makes a website achieve the highest ranking. What is far more important is how enjoyable your website is to navigate, how helpful your site is to those that end up there and where they go after landing on your front page. Search engine bots don't actually read your content the way a human would, They look for other pieces of evidence to assign their rankings, They need to look at the objective, not the subjective.
For example, if a visitor's next page click is to go further into your site; that is great. If, however, they click one of your links, even if it is to access a competitor's page, it will still elevate your website's search engine placement more than your rival's site you'd linked to. It is all about demonstrating you are the most authoritative resource on the Internet. Period.
The bottom line; make your site for real people, not robots.
This is the truth of the matter that some SEO specialists and website developers, particularly those that mostly sell social media jargon, tend to overlook. Search engines do not manufacture popularity, they only reflect it. It is a critically significant point, since focussing on SEO strategies that don't improve your site for the end user is probably a waste of company money. The best SEO decision a business can make is to create an attractive, stylish, even fun website that is the most relevant for delivering information the world is looking for, on the topics your site covers. Sure you can tweak it here and there to make the algorithms happy, but if you make your visitors happy instead, you will succeed in Internet ranking improvement where SEO gurus will not.
Photo: Some Rights Reserved by Find Your Search - original image here