Friday, July 12, 2013

An Introduction to SEO

This topis introduces you to the basics of search engine optimization. By the end of this lesson  you should be able to:
1. Understand what search engine optimization is and does it work.
2. Understand the basic principles behind search engine optimization.
3. Distinguish between SEO and web design.

What is Search Engine Optimization?

Search engine optimization, or SEO for short, is the process of altering your web pages so that they rank more highly in search engine results. As the Wikipedia puts it, search engine optimization is a set of methodologies aimed at improving the visibility of a website in search engine listings. The term also refers to an industry of consultants that carry out optimization projects on behalf of client sites. Search Engine Optimization is also sometimes referred to as search engine marketing (SEM).

Although this usage is not strictly accurate as search engine marketing involves high-end marketing strategies that encompass more than just optimizing web pages. The purpose of search engine optimization is to make your site visible on the Internet. It does this by optimizing web pages in such a way as to improve their visibility to search engines and ultimately their search engine ranking. There are other ways to get your site found on the Internet. One way is to get listed in various directories. This usually involves some kind of fee. Another way to make your site visible on the Internet is to pay for advertising. One of the most popular is the Pay per click system or PPC for as like Google Adword.

Under this system, you pay the company who advertises your site a fee every time somebody clicks the link in your advert. These systems can prove to be expensive. In fact, not entirely necessary. A much more cost effective way of making your site visible is to learn the basic techniques of search engine optimization. Unlike PPC or directories, listings in search engine results are absolutely free. Of course, hiring a professional SEO company to do the work of improving your visibility in listings is far from free, but by following the techniques outlined in this course, you can learn how to do the work of optimizing you site yourself site while saving a lot of money in the process.

Because search engine listings are free, this does not mean that they are far from important. It is estimated that somewhere in the region of 85% of Internet users have used search engines at some point. This suggests that millions of people search the Internet for products and services every day. An optimized website allows you to tap into this vast reservoir of potential visitors and customers by allowing your site to be found in search engine listings. Consider also that when Internet users actually go to the bother of typing a search term into a search engine, they are already actively looking for specific products, services, or information. SEO helps you to direct this qualified traffic to your site and thereby convert visits into sales.

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