A Comprehensive Guide to Search Engine Optimization

Why is SEO so important? Consider the web to be something like a directory. Any person flipping through the pages of this directory for a particular service will be most attracted to the first few entries in the listings page. They will contact one of the businesses listed in the first pages and clinch their deal. It does not matter if your business, which is on the last page, is offering something better. You will simply not get any business because you are ‘invisible’ to potential customers. That is why it is crucial to get on the first page of search engine listings.

Understand this: Search engines are the doorways to your business. The majority of web traffic is driven by sites like Yahoo, Google, MSN and AskJeeves. If these sites cannot find your website when a user searches for terms associated with your business, then you lose out on the amazing business opportunities on the web.

SEO is becoming increasingly important to business websites because of the increasing competitiveness in the online environment Search engines are continually improving their technologies so they can bring the most valid search results to users. So, the right moves can bring you thousands of new visitors and the wrong moves can see you sinking into oblivion! That is why you need to adjust your SEO strategies accordingly.

How do search engines work? Search engines crawl through millions of pages on the web and they index the contents, and store the results of their findings in a database. When a user types a query or a request, search engines sort through this index. The correct match is determined when the term or phrase that the user has typed in is found in the search engine’s index. Once the engine identifies all the pages that have a match, then, the engine’s inner algorithm takes over. It runs an internal calculation to determine the most relevant results in a particular order. These are the listings you see.

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Relevance and popularity of your webpage are the main criteria that search engines use to measure your appropriateness in listings. Additionally, many factors like the use of proper hyperlinks, tags, site structure and back links affect your search engine listings. For instance, pages that make use of ‘frames’ can confuse search engines. Similarly, a document that is accessed only when the user submits a form is inaccessible to search engines. The key to ensuring search engine success is to provide accessible, direct HTML links to your pages.

Every search engine has its own listing ‘logic’ and understanding this logic takes some amount of time and effort. Besides, SEO is not a one-time process; rather, it is ongoing and continuous. That is why many online businesses find it easier to outsource search engine optimization to a company that is professionally trained in this area.

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