search engine optimization

Let’s talk about the popular term SEO today.

What is Search Engine Optimisation

Search Engine Optimization which is popularly referred to as SEO simply means letting search engines like Google and Bing find your content or website when someone searches for things related to what you do.

The end goal of SEO is to appear on the first page of these search engines and ultimately to appear as the first website after every relevant search related to your business or content is made.

A number of platforms that are not the traditional search engines have also adopted something similar for ranking content and hence you must be aware of these other platforms so as to be able to dominate them.

YouTube is one of them and can be considered as a search engine for videos.

Hence when you talk about SEO with respect to YouTube, your interest will be to optimize your video such that it shows immediately someone searches for a related topic.

Non-Traditional Search Engines

Three other platforms that do not fall under the traditional search engines but have devised ways for people to optimize their content for inbuilt search are:

  • Amazon
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest

Before we talk about how each of these platforms implements the concept of search engine optimization, let’s look at how the traditional search engines work and how to optimize your website or content for them.

How search engines work and how to optimize your content for SEO

Search engines have evolved over time and have become smarter than they used to be.

The focus used to be only on KEYWORDS and hence search engine optimization was seen to be keywords optimization.

Basically, the search engines looked at the presence of keywords in your content that matches with what the searcher is searching for.

The number of times those relevant keywords appeared in your content was used to estimate the relevance of the content to the searcher.

The search engine too would consider the location of the searcher and check for the geographical location of your intended audience.

The most relevant contents as estimated by the search engines’ algorithm will then be shown to the searcher.

Bloggers or content creators became smarter with time and started practicing keyword stuffing of their content.

They will stuff their content with keywords they wanted to be ranked for. This means that they will include these keywords multiple times in their content even at positions where it didn’t make sense.

But based on the algorithm at the time, the search engines ranked them higher than others.

With time the search engines caught on and realized that that was what most people were doing.

The algorithms have therefore been updated a number of times and on each occasion, it becomes more powerful and intelligent.

Currently, keywords-based rankings are still valid but overstuffing your content with keywords has a negative effect on your content.

The more important factor that search engines consider now is “Searcher’s intent”. That is to say, ” why is this person searching for such a thing?”.

The search engines have incorporated artificial intelligence to help them understand why someone will search for a particular thing.

The algorithm will then go through various content that it has indexed already and find the one with the most relevant answer for the person.

So, if you optimize your content to answer or provide solutions to what someone is looking for then you are likely to get your content shown to them.

What you need to know about search engines

There are two words that you need to understand to appreciate SEO in this era;

  • Indexing
  • Ranking

Indexing simply means that the search engine finds the content that you have published and captures it into their huge database. It then categorizes your content based on the relevant keywords in it. This means that your content will be among the ones the algorithm will look through when someone searches for that particular keyword.

It is therefore essential to have a focus keyword whenever producing content. We will talk more about that later.

After, your site or content has been indexed by these search engines, the next thing is for the algorithm to rank your site to determine on which position you will appear when someone searches for a related keyword. We will also look at how to rank your site or content later.

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