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Introduction to Search Engine Optimization (SEO)


 
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The Ranking Struggle

It's almost impossible to surf the Internet without using search engines, the programs that allow users to search for websites using keywords or phrases. Website owners who are interested in making their site public and increasing their traffic submit their sites to search engines. The biggest issue that website owners have with this method is that the majority of users searching with engines only look at the first page of results and no farther. Increasing their ranking in search engine results has become a necessity for website owners who need to increase their audience. Many use a method called search engine optimization.

 

Improving Relevance

Search engine optimization or SEO is a method to increase a site's relevance. Since search engines search for the most relevant content related to the search criteria, which are the keywords or phrases indicated by the person searching for that information, optimizing a site for the most relevance is crucial. This optimization will increase a website's ranking for similar sites, improving the chances of being one of the top ranking sites in search results. Top ranking results means being on the first page of a search, which means exposure to a target audience.

Search engine optimization methods include streamlining the content of a website and editing the HTML code for a website. Streamlining content means creating text with a robust amount of keywords and phrases that relate to the subject of the website. A simple, clean HTML code and valid Meta tags will help search engine programs to efficiently evaluate the website for relevancy. A cluttered HTML code or convoluted Meta tags can confuse a search and cause the website ranking to drop.

 

Black Hat SEO

There are website developers who go beyond ethical means for search engine optimization with SEO techniques that increase a site's ranking without relevance. This is called black hat SEO, also known as Spamdexing. Black hat SEO marketers overload the HTML code and Meta tags with popular, high-traffic keywords or phrases to trick the search engines into ranking the website high for a search on those keywords, even if the content isn't at all relevant. Search engines are well aware of these practices and are continually improving their programs to detect and remove websites that have fallen to black hat SEO. Using such practices may afford a website owner with temporary high volume traffic, but will eventually lead to the downfall of the site.

 

Charismatic Content

Though search engine optimization is an important and useful tool for gaining traffic to a website, it's not the only technique a website owner should employ. Other methods to promote a site should be used in tandem with SEO, but the key to a popular site is to have great content. Concentrating efforts on charismatic content will help marketing strategies like search engine optimization flow smoothly and generate tons of targeted traffic.

 




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