What is SEO & Do I need it?

 

What is SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. Put simply, this means work that is undertaken to increase your position on search engines, such as Google and Bing.

So what is a search engine?

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A search engine is any program that allows you to search the internet for content. The most famous one being Google. But there are others, such as Bing and Yahoo.

The most used by far is Google with almost 70% market share. With over 123 languages to choose from and over 3.5 billion searches a day, Google dominates the market. So with that in mind this is the one you need to focus on.

So how does a search engine work?

Well this is the $527 billion question! (that’s how much Google is estimated to be worth currently).

Exactly how Google’s search engine works is unknown and that is how they would like to keep it. If people know exactly how it works, then people can cheat the system.

In its simplest form Google is looking for relevancy. If you typed “leisure centres in Greenwich” into Google and it came up with a list of Motorcycle companies in Inverness, you would not bother to use Google at all.

The two main things to remember are;

  1. Relevancy– Google’s overriding aim is to bring you, their customer, the most relevant results corresponding to what you typed into the search box. So if you type in “Leisure centres in Greenwich” it will bring back a list of websites for leisure centres that are based in and around Greenwich.
  1. Money talks– of course Google isn’t valued at $527 billion by providing 3.5 billion daily users with a free service. There are many, many, many ways that Google makes money and selling advertising space is just one of them. So you may have noticed when you type in certain searches you’ll get a few results at the top of the page with the little yellow “Ad” icon against them?

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These are results that have paid to be there using Google AdWords. What they are doing is paying to come up in the top spot(s) under the search term you have typed in. The example above is “Law firms in London”. As you can see, the search bolds relevant keywords.

Unfortunately, it is often rather pricey to work your way to the top of Google. More and more companies are turning to SEO specialists to work on increasing their position in Google.

So what is SEO?

SEO is the process and work by which your site climbs up Google’s (and/or other search engines) rankings. It involves having to identify what your customers are likely to be typing into a search engine and then targeting your site toward those keywords or phrases.

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SEO does not work on the Google AdWords results, it works on the Organic results. These are those that are displayed under the adverts. Google the phrase– “law firms in London” you’ll get three ad results followed by some organic results as well as some Map Results.

SEO generally involves working on other things within the site that can help improve your chances of climbing Google’s rankings and reaching more potential customers. If you don’t show up on page 1 of Google your chances of being found are slim to none. So your top priority should be to display on page 1 for your market and location.

So what can you do about it?

The first thing I will say is, SEO is something you ought to be paying attention to. Secondly, it is going to require some investment; either through committing your own time or by paying someone else for theirs.

Why should you care?

Sooner or later your competition will invest in SEO and will start to outstrip you. If you do not pay attention to SEO you will be relegated to page 2 in no time at all.

With this in mind, it would be wise to start looking at your SEO now. My standard SEO package is priced at £75 a month and runs for a minimum of 3 months. This includes linking a Google+ and Google MyBusiness account to your website to give you a Google Maps pin for your business. Advanced packages are available upon request.

 

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