What is Search Engine Optimization?
You’ve probably seen advertising for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) companies. For a fee, these companies will review and revamp your entire website, based on their extensive knowledge of current search engine criteria. While this is a valuable service, the new businessperson needs to tread with caution. hiringHere, we’ll take a look at the most commonly asked SEO questions and, after learning their answers, show you why you really need to pay for assistance.
Search Engine Optimization is precisely what it sounds like. Search engines are how most of us find information on the internet. Google and Bing are two ‘giants’ of the industry. SEO has to do with making your website as attractive to and high-ranking in a search engine’s search results as possible. The aspects involved are keywords, site structure, content update frequency, and many others.
How Involved Do I Need to Get?
SEO can seem intimidating to the novice, and rightly so. There are many different aspects involved in SEO, and many of those are things that typical internet users have never heard of, let alone tried to manipulate.
However, for the typical small business owner, blogger or vlogger, the vast majority of SEO aspects are simply not that important. According to experts, the most important aspects of SEO include keywords, quality content and regularly updated content. Links and traffic are next.
These are familiar and simple concepts that we’re all used to dealing with. Thankfully for the cash-strapped, they’re also aspects of SEO that can be handled fairly capably at home. In short, you don’t need to devote months to studying and analyzing search engine ranking systems (which are constantly changing). If you keep your site professional looking, regularly updated and tagged with common-sense keywords, you should fare just fine.
Who to Hire?
Hiring a company or individual to do your website optimization can be just as confusing as the intricacies of SEO itself.
If you’re just starting out, it’s best to avoid hiring. Consider giving yourself a thorough self-education on SEO basics, implement what you’ve learned, and see the results. If, after a reasonable amount of time, you’re not satisfied with your rankings, it may be time to consult a professional.
When seeking to hire, be cautious. As with any online business, there are reputable, honest and quality professionals out there – along with a lot of crooks looking to take your money and run. You can check out the reputation of a company in many different ways. Checking their BBB (Better Business Bureau) rating is a great start. If possible, seek out a company that people you actually know have used and been pleased with. If that’s not possible, ask the company for references – if they shy away from offering references, you may want to look elsewhere. Any company with a good reputation will be happy to show off their satisfied clients! If they hesitate, it may mean that lots of unsatisfied former clients are lurking in their past.
Your Bottom Line
As you can see, the major components of SEO (keywords, quality, relevance, frequent postings and natural-language tags) are familiar and relatively easy to master. The more intricate portions (spiders, up-to-the-minute search engine criteria, paying for ads) are harder to grasp. If you’ve done a thorough overhaul of your website based on accurate and current SEO basics and you’re still not satisfied with your rankings, consider professional help. Just remember to carefully and thoroughly check out any company or individual you consider hiring before you hand over that credit card number.