What is SEO? Learn More With Design A.

People ask us all the time, “What is SEO?”  SEO stands for search engine optimization and its the process of organizing your website and it’s content so that it’s more accessible by people and major search engines,such as Google.  The process typically involves writing specific content about a subject (such as search engine optimization) that is commonly searched for by users on the web.  Writing compelling content is paramount as ranking depends partially on the quality of the writing. Then we go through the process of creating your meta tags (title, description and keyword) to help search engines to easily identify what your content is about.  It’s important because this influences the title and descriptions that display in the search results when you rank in the search results.  Another important and primary factor are backlinks, which are anchor text (hyperlinked) from other authoritative sources on the internet crediting your page or articles.   Backlinks need to be highly focused on quality and not quantity.  We would personally take one or two high quality links over a hundred poorly constructed spam links that could get you banned from search engines altogether.  When you anchor text and build backlinks they should be compelling, thought-provoking or informative in nature and be very highly targeted so there’s a strong relevance between the page you’re linking from back to your website, page or blog article.  When you build backlinks you’re passing PageRank (named after Google Co-founder, Larry Page).  PageRank is a quality score that Google assigns to pages, this score gets through from page to page as they link to one another.  Very few,  (except perhaps Matt Cutts) know exactly how the PageRank algorithm works and no one at Google who knows will ever tell you exactly how PageRank is factored, it’s also always changing.

Here’s an illustration of our speculation on how PageRank is working as of 11/25/2013:

PageRank diagram

 

Essentially there’s a point of diminishing returns based on how many sources a web page links to.  The more links that are created from a source, the less PageRank passes to all sources that are linked to from the original source. However, if all sources are added we believe PageRank is added then divided to produce an average and rounded up because to the best of our knowledge PageRank doesn’t use decimals, but it might!  The long and short of it is that the  higher the quality of  your copy, the more likely other website owners, blogs and content publishers will link to you (backlink) using hyperlink (anchor text) and as PageRank passes through many sources to your website your PageRank should continue to increase over time.

This isn’t always the case though and a high PageRank isn’t even necessarily a requirement to establish yourself on the first page of Google search results. Often Google will analyze the quality of your content in respect to grammar and how well it’s written, whether or not it’s original work or copied off another website to determine where your website will rank on specific keywords.  One of the most important qualities any website can have on the internet is originality.  Do not ever rip off another company’s work because the major search engine  will know it and you will either be penalized or not rank at all until it’s corrected.

Another important factor of SEO and your rank on Google is the use of image alt attributes.  Like meta tags, image alt attributes tell search engines what your image is using plain text so it can determine what your image is of without having to use OCR technology, even though Google says it doesn’t OCR the web; we believe it does because of applications such as Google Goggles and image search.  What’s that mean for SEO?  Your images should be unique and properly labeled!

Sitemaps are another very important part of SEO.  A sitemap helps search engines to understand the organization of your website, how frequently you update pages and the importance using a numerical value.  Design A uses Google Webmaster Tools to submit sitemaps, updates and to track how your website ranks and whether or not you’re on the first page of Google.  We use really in-depth reporting through Google Analytics to determine what content is helping you to catch greater opportunity for visitors and to discover what types of headlines generate a higher clickthrough rate (CTR).

This is just scratching the surface of SEO, for more information and a complimentary consultation, call our team at (480) 277-3675.  Our plans start at just $240/mo and we’re known to be a very reputable SEO service provider!  Design A was started by Andrew Rulnick who worked four years for Go Daddy and two years at Teletech consulting for their client Google.  He has over ten years experience in search engine optimization and Google AdWords account management and can handle your company’s ranking for you.

What are your thoughts? Leave a comment!