Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is a subset of SEM. SEO is the free traffic you receive from gaining access to ranking within the search engines. It refers to techniques a business can use to improve how their websites rank “naturally” or “organically” within the search engines.
Done properly, SEO best practices can help your website naturally rank higher than other similar offerings. With SEO, you can’t buy your way into better organic rankings. These rankings are determined to a proprietary set of search engine algorithms established by the search engine companies themselves. If you do everything right, your website may show up higher in search results. If you misstep and do things the search engines don’t like, your results can cause lower search rankings or even get delisted from Google
Search engine crawlers look to deliver the highest quality rankings possible and will look for things like:
Descriptive page titles and URLs which incorporate keywords
A website that is regularly updated and has highly relevant content such as articles and blog posts
Inbound links from other websites that help showcase your site as credible and authoritative
The challenge with SEO is it is always an ever-changing environment. Search engines like Google change its algorithm for ranking websites all the time. It can require a lot of upkeep to ensure your website is always relevant and playing by the updated rules. This is why many smaller businesses prefer to leave this portion of their SEM strategy to the experts.