As experts in local SEO, we are asked a lot of questions by businesses regarding what search engine optimization actually means and what it involves. For the average business owner, this is an elusive concept that can seem as foreign as a line of code. While most people do not have the time to learn the details of where every link should be placed, it is a good idea for business owners and marketing managers to understand the core concept of SEO, how it works, and why it matters.
search en•gine op•ti•mi•za•tion
the process of maximizing the number of visitors to a particular website by ensuring
that the site appears high on the list of results returned by a search engine.
There are three basic components of SEO, and it all starts with keyword research. You need to know what keywords and questions someone would type into a search engine that could lead them to your website. For example, if you are a pediatric dentist someone could type in your name but if they have never heard of you, what other descriptive words would describe your practice? This list should include your location, the age range of patients that you serve, the procedures that you offer, answers to parent questions about oral health, etc. We can help you to come up with a comprehensive list that is based on statistical research.
Next, you will need on-site optimization. This involves placing keywords throughout your website. They should be included in your on-page content, your titles and meta tags, etc. The overall architecture of your site is also important because it needs to be easy to read and navigate both from a desktop and mobile device. You want to make sure that if someone were to type in a search term, they would arrive at your website and that the content you are providing is what they were expecting to see. Your SEO, website architecture, on-page content and media all need to work together to provide a positive user experience so that your conversions will go up as well.
Lastly, good SEO involves off-site optimization. This is done using avenues like social media. For example, if you send out a Tweet it can include a link back to your website for more information. You can run a contest on Facebook that draws users to your website, etc. Your blog can also be a useful tool for off-site optimization. When done correctly, these three components will work together so that when someone types in a search, your website shows up.
Why does SEO matter?
The majority of U.S. adults own a cell phone and use it to search for things on a regular basis. This is in addition to the millions of people that hop on their computer throughout the day. In fact, Google alone has over 1 billion queries daily. Over ninety percent of men and women use a search engine to find information, a business, purchase something, etc. Additionally, eighty percent of people reported searching for something online and then making a purchase from that local business. In other words, search queries lead to more patients and money to your bottom line. The problem is that if you do not have good SEO, the chance of your website showing up in the list of search results is slim. Fortunately, we have a variety of tools and resources that can help you to change this. To get started, read more of our posts on SEO or give us a call.