Websites get traffic through various methods, including:
- Search engine results pages
- References through blog and click-through sites
- Links through social media
- Addresses from print media
Of these, the search engines account for approximately 90% of all online traffic. For this reason, online selling portals must be search engine friendly.
Can a Website Rely on Salient Content?
Some website owners reason that the search engine designers know what they are doing, and all they have to do is to create engaging online content and the search engines will do the rest. Unfortunately, it is not that straightforward.
Search engines use artificial intelligence (AI) to determine the contents of the results page. In other words, search engine designers attempt to understand what page the user would want to visit according to the search words they enter. For instance, a person wanting to buy shoes may enter the word “buy shoes” into the browser, and the engine returns a list of shoe stores. However, if there are thousands of online shoes stores, what makes the engine show one particular shoe store in front of all the others?
How Businesses Are Ranked by Search Engines
Early search engines decided that the most relevant shoe stores were those that mentioned the word “shoe” the most. Clever website designers responded by creating content that was just the word “shoe” repeated a thousand times. Algorithm designers realized that they needed to outsmart those who would take advantage of the weaknesses in the algorithm. They had to protect their users. They did this by using more advanced algorithms. For instance, they would look for sites that mentioned shoes a reasonable number of times, but no more.
On the other side of the coin, it was important that shoe stores included their keywords often enough. If a particular shoe site did not mention shoes as often as another, they could appear further down on the results list. Matching website content to search engine expectations is the essence of search engine optimization (SEO).
Another aspect of SEO is keyword granularity. From the example above, the keywords “buy shoes” is not very detailed. Entering these keywords into a search engine returns over 100 million results. Regardless of the quality of the website, it would be very difficult for any one of those stores to appear on the first search engine results page. This is where keyword granularity comes in. Shoe stores stand out by including keyword phrases that are more specific, such as “comfortable sport shoes” or “name brand fashion pumps”. These detailed phrases help customers find their stores in search engines.
Leave SEO to the Experts
Keeping up with the latest search engine algorithms and optimizing content for search engines can be challenging. Many prefer to offload this important task, and let professionals design their SEO