Search engines act as a portal to the rest of the Internet – all 4 billion pages (and counting) of it. Getting found amid the crowd requires a careful blend of art and science commonly known as Search Engine Optimization, or SEO.
In this guide, I intend to introduce you to what it is we’re talking about when we talk about SEO, and some of the things search engines are and aren’t looking for on each page of your website.
I like to think of SEO as the “thesis” of my content. It helps drive web traffic from the free, organic, editorial and natural listings of search engine results.
All major search engines, including Google, Yahoo and Bing, generate results pages in response to a user’s query. Web pages, videos, local listings, and other content are shown and ranked based on what the search engine considers most relevant to users.
Below is a search engine result page. The area highlighted in RED represent Paid Search (Pay-Per-Click, or PPC) results; in BLUE are the Local results; and in ORANGE are the Organic search results. Of these three, Local and Organic are most dependent on SEO.
What are we looking at here?
The goal of SEO isn’t to “game” the search engines. That doesn’t stop people from trying, of course, but it’s not the right attitude to bring into your strategy. The search engines themselves tend to frown on that kind of behavior, and it could actually hurt your rankings.
The purpose of SEO is twofold:
Search results, and the techniques you use to influence them, will vary based on the competitive nature of your industry or the keyword that you are trying to rank for.
In the next section of our guide, we look into defining our “thesis” with keyword phrases, and some of the best practices for using them in your website to get the best search engine placement and results.
As Mason’s Director of Digital Strategies and Analytics, Ryan Winiarski believes the key to any campaign begins with defining measurable goals and setting the tracking efforts directed at attaining those goals.Working in media and marketing communications for more than 10 years, Ryan has a deep understanding of how online and offline marketing programs can be integrated. That knowledge and understanding allows the Mason team to understand and measure the effectiveness of your advertising, public relations and total marketing spend to create high-impact campaigns that create opportunities, results and revenue giving you the most efficient return on your investment.