Why SEO Is Important
What SEO Is & Why It Is Important
Although search engines have become increasingly sophisticated, in many ways they still can’t see and understand a web page the same way a human does. SEO helps the engines figure out what each page is about, and how it may be useful for users. – MOZ.com
Imagine you own a restaurant or store, but you have no sign above the door. You’re operating out of an unmarked building. You could tell everyone in the world about how great your product or service is, but if they can’t find you, then no one will come through the door.
SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process of organizing and promoting a website so that search engines are able to easily find, read, and understand the website, therefore being able to appropriately list the website under relevant searches. SEO is important because the majority of business is now either being done through a website or is originated from online research. If your business isn’t being found online, your business will likely suffer.
Does Your Website Look Great But Still Not Showing Up?
So you get great reviews and comments from friends, family, or business associates who have viewed your site and they all agree that your site looks great but they have trouble finding your site. You may be wondering why you’re not showing up in search engines. This could be either because the search engines can’t find you, or they can’t figure out what your website is about.
Search engines can’t “read” photos or understand what they are. This is also the case for flash files, video, audio, and plug-in content.
If your website has a lot of fancy graphics, photos, flash videos or other rich media content, and very little verbiage or text outside of images, then search engines may not be able to figure out what your website is about. Imagine handing a blind person a photograph and expecting them to figure out what it looks like. Now, if you were to give that same person a detailed description of that photograph in Braille, they would get a lot closer to understanding what was on the picture. Through the use of search engine optimization, an internet marketer is able to describe the content that search engines are unable to read, making it easier for search engines to understand what your website is all about.
Are Search Engines Able To Find You?
We’ve all heard the philosophical question, “If a tree falls in the forest, and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?”. Well, the same concept applies to a website. If your customers are unable to find it, and if search engines can’t find it, does it actually exist? That’s what promoting your site is all about.
Part of SEO involves promoting your website, and your business, so people are able to find it and also promote it. This not only helps search engines find your content easier but makes your website seem more important since more people are talking about it. Having other people promote your website by linking to it, translates to search engines seeing your site as being high quality, respected, and favored; therefore the search engines are more likely to list your site and give you a better rank.
SEO Is Important Because It Guides Search Engines Through Your Site
Ever hear of a robot.txt file? Well, if you’re not an internet marketer then you probably haven’t. A robot.txt file tells search engines which pages they should read on your website. Unless you tell the search engines, via a robot.txt file, which pages to scan, there’s no way for a search engine to know which pages to crawl and which not to crawl. You don’t want search engines trying to find information on your admin panel or login page, because it’s not relevant to your site. You also don’t want to accidentally block search engines from reading important pages.
You can’t feed a steak to a baby; they need easy-to-digest food in small pieces. SEO makes your website more digestible for search engines to take in and understand.
Search engine algorithms are quite mind-blowing and are extremely intelligent at understanding data, but they are still limited, therefore it’s the job of search engine optimization to help break down the data into more understandable chunks.
SEO Is Important Because It Helps Bring The Right Traffic
Your website might be phenomenal and even your verbiage may be great, but if you’re using terms that the majority of users aren’t using when doing a search, then you may never get found. For instance, if you sell car insurance and repeatedly use the phrase “automobile insurance” on your website, you may get found for “automobile insurance”, but if everyone is searching for “car insurance” then you may not be getting found. Or perhaps you sell pet products or services and instead of saying “cat” and “dog”, you use the terms “feline” and “canine”. Most people are going to understand exactly what you’re saying, but the majority of people aren’t going to go out of their way to do a search using those “fancy” terms.
On the flip side, you also don’t want to be found for extremely broad terms which may bring in irrelevant traffic, making you spend all day weeding out the useless inquiries. If you sell t-shirts with monkeys on them, you don’t want people researching different types of monkeys to find your website. So by carefully choosing the right terms, you’re able to show up on search engines in front of the right people.
Choosing the right terms can sometimes be obvious, but other times it takes years of experience and testing to know which terms convert better.
Are You Getting All The Traffic Possible?
Another reason why SEO is so important is because of the fact that the majority of users who use search engines will click on the first link that is listed (about 55%). This leaves the scraps to be fought over by the rest of the results, resulting in the first 3 to 5 positions taking practically all the traffic. If your website is showing up on the second page, it’s like not even showing up. Through the use of search engine optimization, you could increase your ranking to the point where you’re finally getting a slice of the pie. More traffic means more business, therefore making SEO extremely important.