When you ask someone what SEO is, you will be likely to get one of two responses. A great number of people of course will stare at you blankly or just slowly shake their head, as unfortunately very few people who don’t work online really have much of a clue when it comes to SEO or wider online marketing for that matter. The other common response though will be that it involves generating lots of links to your site, which is perhaps the most basic understanding of SEO shared by most people.
The truth of the matter is that a lot of people who do SEO just aren’t very good at it, and to say that they oversimplify the process is an understatement. The clue is in the name: SEO stands for ‘Search Engine Optimisation’ and building links is not the only way to optimise a website.
Links Aren’t Always Your Friend
In fact, building links might not even be that good an idea a lot of the time. The job of Google’s algorithms you see, is to try and promote sites that are popular and that have naturally been selected by the general public because they’re reliable and interesting. That means that every update they release is going to be designed to try and stop you from being successful by link building (or link manipulation as they would call it), which is precisely why the penguin and panda updates came as such a blow for so many websites.
Does Google Hate SEO?
So Google wants to stop you building fake link profiles. But does that mean that they dislike SEO? Or that SEO is a necessarily undesirable element?
Not at all. In fact, as I mentioned earlier, SEO simply means search ‘optimization’. What SEO should equate too then is your making your site easier for Google to find and rank and making it easier for others to share your content and spread the word if they like your site.
For instance then, creating your pages in the correct way, writing articles of a good length using the correct HTML tags and headings and building a site map can all help Google’s spiders to find their way around your site more easily. Writing great articles and sharing them through social media will help to attract more visitors and make them more likely to want to share your content around the net thus building a genuine and organic link profile. Marketing your site is also useful and you can do that by using an internet marketing firm that works in your industry such as restaurant or tourism marketing companies.
When you do all this, you align yourself with Google and help them to accomplish their goals instead of just trying to ‘trick’ their algorithms. Once yourgoals are in line with Google’s – to provide good quality that people generally want to see, then you’ll find they start working with you rather than against you.
[author ]Author of this post, Nick Compton is an SEO by profession. He has mastered the art of link building and provides useful tips on the subject to newbies on several blogs. A voracious reader, he likes to collect as much information possible regarding the latest happenings in the industry.[/author]