What is SEO? Search Engine Optimization. Simply put, it’s optimizing the writing on your website so that search engine spiders can accurately index your site based upon its content.

What?

Let’s break this into simple concepts. Each search engine has “spiders.” These spiders are programs that visit each web page and make notes of the major words and idea concepts they find. They find the links in your pages and “crawl” into those pages too. These spiders help the search engines index pages with the information they provide. Each search engine manages a database that contains every web page that one of their spiders has crawled on. Spiders visit sites randomly, so there is no way to determine how often a spider will visit your page.

With that in mind, there are two ways to make a better showing in search engine results. First, have all of your content optimized for keywords that best describe your services or main products. A simple thing like that can improve your local ranking is to have your contact information on every page, including your physical business address in order to show you are a widget maker in Springfield. With that in mind, if somebody searches for “widget Springfield,” you’ll come up in the listings.

Second, you should pay to have your listing at the top of the search engine results (a “sponsored link,” according to Google). This is a good idea if you already have a lot of competition ahead of you in the search engine listings. However, if you are the only tail groomer for squirrels, you can be fairly certain that you will end up at the top of a search. If you have a lot of competition, it can take six months or more for optimization to take effect, so paying for a top listing can be a real boon.

Finally, you’ll find beautiful websites made with Flash animation that have unique buttons, fun toys, and an array of characteristics that just aren’t possible with a good ol’ static website. If you do have a Flash website, I recommend having a mirror website written in HTML. Spiders cannot crawl a flash site because it doesn’t contain text coding like one finds in HTML, so having a non-Flash mirror site will allow your site to be indexed by the spiders.

In conclusion, Search Engine Optimization tweaks your site just enough to get more visibility through the search engines. While there can be many things to consider when performing SEO, they can really affect how often new people will find your site. SEO helps your site visibility and creates a better return from your presence on the internet.

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