Just what is this SEO process?

The term SEO is funny.  The acronym itself stands for Search Engine Optimization (or sometimes Optimizer) but the way people use it could imply it is a person, a place, or even a vegetable.  You optimize a web site by several methods, and we’re going to talk about what to expect from an SEO consultant like myself, and what results you can expect from SEO in general.

If you’re lucky I might share my recipe for making an SEO Pie.  Delicious.

There are two factors to Search Engine Optimization, on site factors like keyword rich content, targeted page names, etc and off site factors like strong backlinks and the relevance and pagerank of those backlinks.  Let’s talk about the on site factors first.

On site factors are things we’ve covered before (See Keyword Optimization) and once a search engine like Google or Bing arrive at your site, you really want to give them all the information you can.  If your targeted Keyword is “Play Scripts” (sticking with the recent theme) then you want to really make sure you talk about play scripts.  This is your targeted keyword, and how can you target a keyword if you don’t use it on your site?

As a site develops, you may choose to throw all your eggs behind one keyword, or divide yourself among one or two really strong keywords and dozens of lesser keywords.  What is important to keep in mind, is even if one keyword makes up for 30% of your web site sales or lead conversions, you may have a dozen keywords that each makeup another 5% each, so ignoring those lesser keywords may make sense, but when you add them all together those dozen keywords can make up 60% of your sales.

There are several Analytics Tools out there that can help you analyze where your traffic is originating from.  I personally use SEOmoz as they are a trusted SEO resource center, but you may also want to check out local San Antonio company Pear Analytics or just standard old Google Analytics to track your search data.

So you know what your strong keywords are, and you’ve made sure your web site reflects these keywords.  How do you get the search engines to visit and check out your new keyword rich site?  This process is called Link Building, and is easily the most important aspect of any Search Engine Optimization campaign.

Link Building happens in two ways, the first way is organically which is how Google would prefer it to happen, where you create some fantastic content and people who see it say “hey that’s some great content” and they put a link to you in their blog.  This is where you hear me say again and again on Twitter that the biggest compliment you can give someone is to link to their blog or web site.  Link Building makes the Search Engine world go round.

The second way to build links for your site is by creating references to yourself on the internet.  I have a profile for Image Freedom over at AboutUs.org and that profile has links that link back to my site.  Because AboutUs.org is such a big site with so many people visiting every day, that link back to me is pretty valuable.  So any chance you get to create a reference of yourself online you should do, be it through directories like MadeInSATX.com or by commenting on a friends blog where your name is a link back to your site or blog.

Where you build your links varies based on what your web site is about.  For example, my linking to a Tennis Ball company wouldn’t be of much value to that company, because my business and my site has nothing to do with Tennis Balls, but if I were to link to a Web Hosting company, or a graphic designer the similarities to my industry make those more relevant worthwhile links in Google’s eyes.

In the end, you truly want to sit down with a professional that can craft a strategy for your site.  In a perfect world everyone would have an SEO professional helping them choose what keywords to target and where to strive for backlinks.  My goal with this blog is to help fill in some gaps for our readers assuming that they haven’t yet sat down with an SEO professional.

SEO takes time, and a backlink you create today might not effect your position in Search Engine Results for weeks or even a month.  The key is to develop a plan, target those keywords and spend time each month finding new ways to earn backlinks and raise that pagerank.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to e-mail us at info@imagefreedom.com.  We may even dedicate a blog to your question, that is, if you’re willing to share the answer about your site with the world. 😉