I have people ask me this often who admit they are told they need it and have no clue what “it” is. Have no fear if you’re one of those people! I’ll break it down for you.
What is SEO?
Search Engine Optimization is what the acronym stands for. It simply means optimizing your website so it is more findable in search engines. The goal is to outrank your competitors on first-page results so you can get the click.
To make your website SEO-friendly means you are doing specific work on your site in order to get attention from bots that crawl the Internet. Bots are what make things appear on your screen after you ask Google or Bing or Yahoo a question. Those bots are ALWAYS scanning to match a query to a particular website.
Here’s what I mean –
When someone makes a search in Google for “website developers near me,” those bots spring into action and scan TONS of things with the mere click of a keyboard. They are looking for information attached to websites that match the search made by the user. In this example, bots look for content related to website development and consider the location of the person who made the search in order to find developers near them.
Those bots also look for how trustworthy a site is based on DOZENS of factors. Things like the age of your domain, the amount of time people stay on your website, your spam score, and many other tiny but mighty details all matter.
The job of an SEO specialist is to know how to speak to bots so they can:
- 1. Find your website.
- 2. Serve your website up with top results.
Why SEO is Important for Business
My guess is that you have Googled your business before. If you did, I bet your business came up in the top results. Am I right?
While the thinking behind this is sound, there’s a catch. Search engines are designed to learn about YOU through your search history, what you click on, who you interact with, what you buy, and much more. That’s the job of an algorithm––to learn how to show you what it thinks you want to see.
So, in this case, if you searched for yourself, your browser already had a bounty of information stored in it that algorithms used to pick what it showed you. Since the algorithms definitely know who you are and what sites you frequent, in most cases, your company website is always included in the top results.
But, that doesn’t mean that’s where your website truly ranks.
Every person that makes a search, especially on a personal device, will get different search results. If you stopped a stranger on the street and asked them to Google something related to your business, chances are you would show up in a very different position.
Unless you have an SEO-optimized site.
When it comes to SEO, it is a specialist’s job to know how to get the attention of bots so they favor a particular website, no matter who is making a search. This work is a combination of the right content on a website and the technical setup of that content.
Google, for example, changes its algorithms daily, sometimes multiple times daily. It’s how they keep up with consumer and societal trends. This means that having “good SEO” requires you to constantly be optimizing your website in order to change with the times. For this reason, SEO is ideally a long-term commitment, not a once-and-done situation.
If you’re curious about your site’s SEO score, I’ve got you! We have a tool on our website that’s quick, easy, and free to use. A score on the test is similar to what you would want your grade on an exam at school to be. Below 80% leaves a lot of room for improvement. Frankly, a score below 90% also has a lot of room for improvement.
If you find yourself in this “room for improvement” boat, here are some options to consider:
- We offer technical SEO audits at Lamplight Creatives which are good for people exploring SEO services. Even if you don’t want to commit yet, the technical audit will outline major and minor areas of improvement, and the recommendations to resolve them.
- If you’ve been thinking about SEO, now see its value, and are ready to take the plunge, we offer retainers in 3-month increments. Your retainer always begins with a technical audit, so you get that as part of your service plan.
Now, you might be thinking: Maybe I can learn how to achieve good SEO on my own!
I applaud people that learn to do something in order to become more self-sufficient. It shows gumption and character. As for SEO, I don’t suggest this as one of those things. That is unless you’re going to study it, master it, and practice it on a daily basis. People who “do” SEO for a living are constantly learning and relearning techniques to stay relevant in the ever-changing digital scape. Not to mention, they have years of experience and knowledge.
I love talking about SEO. And I love learning about how it helps businesses like yours and mine. But I rely on my team of specialists to do the heavy lifting. Because that’s their job. My job is to be the Creative Director at Lamplight. Sometimes it makes sense to put your talents where they are most needed and let your counterparts fill in the rest. This is how I feel about doing SEO.
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