There are approximately 1.7 billion websites in the world right now, containing almost six billion web pages. So how do you get your website to stand out? How do you get people to visit your website? How can you get potential buyers to see your products or services? Three words – search engine optimisation, an integral component of digital marketing.
A complete understanding of SEO is vital to webmasters. Image courtesy of Mike Corbett
What is search engine optimisation?
Search engine optimisation, or SEO, is the science of increasing the visibility of web properties to search engines. Once web properties get noticed by search engines, they will then include them in search results from queries. Many methods can be used to optimise websites for search engines. The most popular ones include keyword research, engaging content, page speed optimisation and backlinking (really the best links can only be built by an SEO company or digital PR agency due to the outreach required).
However, it is important to remember that your website should not be made for just search engines. That defeats the entire purpose of SEO. Besides, search engines tend to penalise websites that are designed for them instead of humans.
Why should we care about search engines?
The short answer is, search engines make up 34.8% of all online referral traffic.
Search engines are created to help people find websites that are useful to them. As such, search engines crawl the World Wide Web to catalogue hundreds of millions of websites and webpages. After that, search engines will use their proprietary algorithms to sort through and rank the websites in a way they believe is most useful for humans. These results are then presented every time a query is made.
In the following pages, we’ll be looking at the top four SEO criteria that will help your website attain the visibility it deserves.