Understanding SEO basics

December 21, 2018In ArticlesBy Anson LeClair

What is SEO?

SEO is an acronym for the term Search Engine Optimization. It includes the process of using refined and optimized words (or keywords) on your website. When done correctly you increase the chances of your website showing up in search engine results for terms that your potential customers search for.

But why is SEO important?

SEO is usually aligned with Google’s search methods. In this digital age, information is power, Google has a fair claim to being one of the most powerful companies in the world. Although Google stopped providing stats for the years after 2012, has said it handles “trillions” of searches per year worldwide in 2016. As our observation, an average person may conduct 3 – 4 searches every single day (a simple way to back check is keeping track of how many Google searches you – yes you – do today). With the fact that Google became a verb and was added to the Oxford English Dictionary on June 15, 2006; we can understand how important a brand should be there on Google search results when consumers search for products or services. Do you want your brand to show up effectively in that zero moment of truth? SEO can help.

Now, let’s learn some basic SEO terms

Page Title and Description:
The page title and description are both important to SEO. The page title is displayed as the title of the link to your site in search results. The description will also display as part of search results. It describes what the visitor will find if they click on the link provided by the search engine.

The page title is displayed in search results and should include your keywords. The use of keywords in the title impacts the ranking of each page. While the meta description is not used for ranking in search engines, it will also display as part of search results. It should accurately and appealingly describe what the visitor will find on your site.

Image Alt Tags:
When a search engine searches a site to find content it comes across images that it can’t read. Luckily there’s a way to provide an alternate text description of an image for search engines. This is often referred to as using an alt tag or attribute.

Despite the fact that visitors to your site won’t usually see this content, it is a useful way to improve your search engine results. When Google spider crawls on a page, it can’t see pictures, interpret or read any texts that might be part of the image but it uses image alt tags to index and rank your site. So including keywords in image alt tags is crucial in SEO.

Headline 1:
Each page of a site has a main headline, referred to as an H1. The H1 title contains terms that show up in search results. This headline helps repeat and reinforce keywords.

If you’re interested in more in-depth information on SEO, contact us, we are here for a chat.