Search Engine Optimization 101

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) does not require special tools or equipment. To be proficient in SEO, however, a web developer or designer must know the search engine algorithms. But mere SEO proficiency is not enough. Optimization is a priority, but optimization alone will not serve all your needs. At Stepmans PC, we partner with all clients to determine the best optimization techniques and website features to guarantee your online success.

Search Engine Optimization

To be optimized for search engines, your website must first have a purpose. If your website does not have a purpose, it simply cannot be optimized. What is a purpose? A site might be informational; people visit nytimes.com or cnn.com, for example, to specifically acquire knowledge about the world. On the other hand, a site might be interactive, offering visitors an opportunity to utilize various tools, such as Book Fresh's appointment scheduler. Sometimes, the purpose of a site is to merely inspire a visitor to make a phone call. Unfortunately, most company's newly-developed websites do not specify any purpose, and so the company's online presence amounts to little more than a high-priced business card.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is not a technology; it's not a tool, and it's not special equipment. SEO is a marketing strategy applied to a website's content, and partially to technical aspects of the site's development that allow the site to be easily "crawled" by Google, Yahoo, Bing, and other search engines. For SEO, your website's content is crucial. Search engines like Google are always hungry for new, exciting, and informative content. You never know what a visitor has in mind when browsing your site. You can only hope that your content, including the text, images, and video, will transform your visitor into a customer. For these reasons, content is the King of SEO.

Beyond content, the most important step in optimization is development. Proper development ensures that your website will be indexed and added to the databases of the major search engines. Proper development involves many aspects of your website. What programming language was used to create pages for your site? How is each page styled? The answers might be unfamiliar to you, but a quality web developer will build your site with these questions in mind. But don't be fooled by jargon! You might believe that in order to be fully-optimized your site must be intricately developed, and that only specialists or SEO companies know the trick. Nonsense! Indeed, if you follow today's web development standards, every search engine in the world will be able crawl your website with ease.

Internet "crawlers," also known as spiders, visit every website and attempt to gather any valuable information they can find within each website's pages. If certain pages have a link to another page on the same site, or a link to a different site, the web crawler will follow the link and gather more information. This is the only way a crawler can find information on the Internet, so it is very important for your website to have links from one page to another. This method of website optimization is known as Organic Search Engine Optimization.

You have probably heard about different website optimization techniques. Perhaps you've even heard about White Hat SEO and Black Hat SEO. White Hat SEO is the natural way to promote a website, and includes only proper standards of web development. Black Hat SEO, on the other hand, is a method that attempts to trick search engines to add your website into their database. This is a gimmick! Black Hate SEO is irrelevant. In reality, there are not two different ways to promote a website. To search engines, only organic optimization is acceptable. Anything else might harm your website; disreputable optimization techniques might even lead search engines to penalize your website forever!

If you need help building your website according to today's development standard, or if you would like to organically promote your website, please call Stepman's PC

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