What is SEO? What is it good for? Do I need it? Why do I need it for?
Well, to explain basics SEO is short for Search Engine Optimization. SEO is the process of improving the visibility of a website for search engines. When you search for a specific topic the search engine returns a number of pages in a specific order. That order is not random, it is ordered by the search engines ranking algorithm. Every Search engine has its own algorithm that is kept in secret. But there are official guidelines that help SEO masters understand how they should improve websites for better visibility.
How Search Engines Work
The first basic truth you need to learn about SEO is that search engines are not humans. While this might be obvious for everybody, the differences between how humans and search engines view web pages aren’t. Unlike humans, search engines are text-driven. Although technology advances rapidly, search engines are far from intelligent creatures that can feel the beauty of a cool design or enjoy the sounds and movement in movies. Instead, search engines crawl the Web, looking at particular site items (mainly text) to get an idea what a site is about. This brief explanation is not the most precise because as we will see next, search engines perform several activities in order to deliver search results – crawling, indexing, processing, calculating relevancy, and retrieving.
First, search engines crawl the Web to see what is there. This task is performed by e piece of software, called a crawler or a spider (or Googlebot, as is the case with Google). Spiders follow links from one page to another and index everything they find on their way. Having in mind the number of pages on the Web (over 20 billion), it is impossible for a spider to visit a site daily just to see if a new page has appeared or if an existing page has been modified. Sometimes crawlers will not visit your site for a month or two, so during this time your SEO efforts will not be rewarded. But there is nothing you can do about it, so just keep quiet.
SEO as a marketing strategy
SEO is not necessarily an appropriate strategy for every website, and other Internet marketing strategies can be much more effective, depending on the site operator’s goals. A successful Internet marketing campaign may drive organic traffic, achieved through optimization techniques and not paid advertising, to web pages, but it also may involve the use of paid advertising on search engines and other pages, building high quality web pages to engage and persuade, addressing technical issues that may keep search engines from crawling and indexing those sites, setting up analytics programs to enable site owners to measure their successes, and improving a site’s conversion rate
SEO may generate a return on investment. However, search engines are not paid for organic search traffic, their algorithms change, and there are no guarantees of continued referrals. (Some trading sites such as eBay can be a special case for this; it will announce how and when the ranking algorithm will change a few months before changing the algorithm). Due to this lack of guarantees and certainty, a business that relies heavily on search engine traffic can suffer major losses if the search engines stop sending visitors. It is considered wise business practice for website operators to liberate themselves from dependence on search engine traffic. A top-ranked SEO blog Seomoz.org has suggested, “Search marketers, in a twist of irony, receive a very small share of their traffic from search engines.” Instead, their main sources of traffic are links from other websites.