Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a necessary component for any
web-based strategy. It has been said that a web site is like a billboard
in the desert unless it is well-indexed in the major search engines.
Today there are various types of SEO, and in this article we will
try to help you better understand these types so that you may make
a well-informed decision regarding your web strategy.
Organic search engine optimization is based on several elements.
The first is the metatag information that is part of the web site’s
code (HTML). Visitors do not see this code and it is not important
for them to do so. The important “person” who needs to see this is
the search engine robots (known also as bots) or crawlers. Search
engines are driven and propagated by bots that crawl or search websites
and then index them based on their own set criteria. These criteria
vary from engine to engine and it is relatively mysterious. In other
words, search engine companies typically do not post their criteria
nor is it static. These criteria change almost daily it seems and
this is one of the main reasons individuals should rely on professional
search engine optimization companies who keep up with the changing
trends. Back to the metatags…this code is made up of keywords, a
description, a title (this metatag is visible on the website as the
page title) and other components that communicate to the search bots
information such as the language of the site, how often it should
be crawled, and other standards that the site conforms to. Various
search engines limit the number of characters for both the keyword
metatags and the description. Characters that exceed this limit may
either be ignored or considered as SPAM (and the site may therefore
me completely ignored). Another issue of spamming involves the repetition
of keywords. Some engines also limit this, and again may ignore the
site if keywords are used too many times. This is actually a benefit
to legitimate sites since this factor was not considered in earlier
days and some web sites spammed particular keywords to gain top positions,
even though their sites had little to do with that topic. Individuals
and businesses should look for SEO firms that not only build metatags
that conform to industry standards, but should also expect quality
metatags that are built based on research of search terms used. This
is accomplished by SEO firms who determine which keywords and keyword
phrases will render the best results. Another factor of organic SEO
is the actual content. One philosophy of the organic SEO is that
content is king. Because various standards exist among search engines,
this is not absolute. However, content is very important, and page
text should be written in such a way as to draw a top position. Again,
research is important to determine what combinations of words and
phrases should be used.
Another element of SEO is pay-per-click advertising. This is also
known as paid linking. Pay-per-click ads are an important element
of a web strategy as they deliver immediate results. Ads are constructed
and terms are purchased based on bidding. Depending on the market
your business is in, bidding may be highly competitive. Each time
a search is performed for the keyword(s) that you are bidding on,
an ad will appear (typically at the top of the search results). These
ads are noted as “Sponsored Matches.” If an individual clicks on
your ad, you are charged the rate you bid at. Most SEO companies
allow you to establish a monthly budget and they handle the bidding.
Typically, you’ll get what you pay for, but some companies may charge
a percentage of your monthly budget toward covering their cost and
time. Be aware of what you are purchasing before you make a commitment.
By developing an SEO campaign that uses both organic and pay-per-click
advertising, you will achieve immediate and long-range results. The
pay-per-click ads will get traffic to your site immediately, while
not helping your site achieve actual page rank. Organic SEO takes
time but delivers increased page rank over time, if it is done correctly.
If you have done much research into SEO, you have probably noticed
numerous advertisements promising top positions for as little as
$9.95 a month. Typically this is achieved through pay-per-click ads,
and a cut of the monthly fee goes to the administration of this service.
This is not an effective strategy. SEO firms that have higher prices
up front typically deliver organic SEO. The research process is tedious
(if done correctly) which justifies the higher upfront cost. However,
this strategy will take your site farther in the long run. Consider
first what your goals for your site are, then determine your budget.
From there, you’ll want to find a company that delivers and has a
proven track record.
© Web Renown, 2005
has been performing SEO strategies in both the organic and
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