Best way to SEO your Website
For many small businesses and startups, the process of getting your website listed in search engines is likely to be as big of a mystery as Kanye West’s success. Where do you begin? Should you pay an expert, and if so, how much? Is it something you can do by yourself? Unfortunately, the many myths surrounding Search Engine Optimization (SEO) often lead the do-it-yourself types down paths that end in disappointment.
Search optimization and marketing is a $65 billion-a-year industry, and it’s estimated to surpass $79 billion by 2020. There’s a reason for this: Quality SEO takes work, time, and most importantly, it requires an intimate knowledge of how search engines work.
While there are many factors that determine how well a site ranks in any given search engine, there are a few basics that anyone can understand and implement into their website. But first, a little primer on what search engines are and how they work.
Search engines use software sometimes called crawlers, bots, or spiders — to go from one website to another through hyperlinks. They take the results from each of those websites they’ve crawled and catalog it into their databases which later, can be recalled to serve up the appropriate result in response to the search query of a user.
One of the main signals for search engines is link popularity, which is to say, the number of other websites that link to a particular website. A website with many inbound links from quality websites is one of the key metrics search engines value.
But link popularity is just one factor. And because search engines don’t publicly reveal their algorithm’s secret sauce, we listen to their advice on best practices. But for everything else, it’s mostly trial and error as we attempt to discern what other factors boost a site’s ranking.
Consider that it’s in the best interest of search providers to develop algorithms that deliver the most relevant information to their users. This is no small task; it’s estimated that there are over a billion websites on the Internet today. The capacity to index all that data and serve it up intelligently and quickly is an expensive proposition. And while there are a number of search engines, Google and Bing garner roughly ninety-eight percent of all search traffic. Ironically, the first major search engine, Yahoo, now uses Bing to provide its search results.