SEO Explained! What? Why? How?

SEO is not a dark art. It’s actually pretty straight forward once you understand the basics. So let’s break it down.

SEO text with pixelated red, amber and green

What is SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation.

Search engines, such as Google, scour the internet for ‘search terms’. So when you open Google in your browser and type ‘what is SEO’, you’re entering a in a search term. The way Google finds the answers through data analysis and provides the most relevant result based on the information they’ve collected and their algorithms.

SEO is about making it as easy as possible for Google to find your website during this search and making them pick your site as the (or one of the) most relevant to the user.

Why is SEO important?

I think we all know this one! The earlier your website shows up in the search results of your target market, the more likely they are to find your business. And that means they are more likely to purchase the good or service they need from your business. And more sales is what business is all about!

Keep in mind what is important is that your website is in the results for the right searches. If you’re on the first page of Goggle for a term or phrase that is:

  • not what your target market is searching for when looking for your goods or services or
  • not realistically a searchable term

then it’s a waste of time. Being on the first page of Google is only a valuable metric when you’re showing up on the right first page for your business.

How do you improve SEO on your website?

There are many ways to optimise your website for the search engines. The ones with the biggest bang for your buck are to:

  1. Review your websites copy and ensure that the search terms (and their synonyms) that you are targeting are in the content across your website.
  2. Add alt text to the photos on your website. Not only does this help with SEO, it will also make your site more accessible to your audience
  3. Submit your site map to Google and request they ‘crawl’ your site – once you’ve finished making all of the changes. Google does not crawl the internet in real time. They run their algorithms on a snapshot of the latest data they have. It can take weeks or months for them to get around to crawling your website if you don’t request it – meaning a lot of missed opportunities for your business

SEO does not need to be a mystery. It’s pretty straight forward really. The internet is massive and SEO is your way of helping the search engines find your website so they can put your business in front of the right people.

SEO is a game all businesses need to play. Get it wrong and you’re invisible to your target market. But get it right and you’ll be front and centre in front of your customers with the answer to their needs.

Now put your shin pads on and get in the game!

Erin Marryatt is the Account Director & Co-Founder of Real Ranger Media, a digital marketing agency based in Sydney, Australia. She is an experienced IT & Business Project Manager with delivery experience at some of Australia’s largest and most trusted brands.