Though you may not realize it, every time you use the World Wide Web you’re interacting with Search Engine Optimization, or SEO. Search engine optimization (SEO) helps those who, because of their work on the internet, have to work around and with search engines. Search engines, such as Google or Yahoo!, are the most common way for a web site, business or enterprise to be found by prospective customers, and act as the main portal to the internet for many people.

sem search engine marketingSEO is part of a larger marketing strategy known as ‘Search Engine Marketing,’ or ‘SEM.’ Some forms of search engine marketing target paid listings within a search engine’s results – these are the ‘sponsored listings’ you might see at the top or at the side of a search engine’s list of results. However, these can often be ignored by prospective customers, who know that the only thing that ‘sponsored listings’ demonstrate is that they have paid money to the search engine’s company in order to receive a ‘special.’ Appearing in a ‘sponsored listing’ doesn’t necessarily mean that a business is more relevant to the search query, or more popular among past users: and this the most relevant, most popular web site is what people want to find when they type a query into a search engine box.

So most corporations, business people, entrepreneurs and individuals use SEO (search engine optimization) instead. The main listings on a search engine’s results page (i.e. those ranked in a list, not the ‘sponsored listings’ isolated from the other results,’ are known among internet experts as the ‘natural,’ ‘unpaid,’ ‘organic’ or ‘algorithmic’ search results. These are the ones which usually get most attention from searchers, and these are the ones which SEO content is created to target. Ranking in these listings is the best indictor of the success of a business’ or organization’s ‘web presence,’ or ‘internet visibility’ – an all-important quality in today’s ‘virtual world.’ For this reason, SEO (search engine optimization), is one of the most popular, and most widely used, internet marketing strategies that exists.

A good SEO manager like Oxbridge Content, when commissioned to improve a web site’s search engine rankings and to push it higher up the results page of all-important search engines such as Google or Yahoo!, will consider several factors before starting to work:

– The types of search engine clients are most likely to use, and how they work. There are many different forms of search engine, although they may seem to the casual user to be all grouped together under one heading. In fact, different types of search engines include academic search engines, news and current affairs search engines, image search engines, local or regional search engines, video search engines, and industry-specific vertical search engines. A familiarity with the workings of each type is essential to the successful building of an SEO-efficient client web site, and the preferred types of search engines differ from client to client. For instance, Reuters will always come in a high place on a news search engine, while, for instance, a hotel supplier might want to attain a high position on the results pages of a search engine used by the catering industry.

– What prospective clients are likely to search for. This one requires some imagination. It’s true that it’s easy to make a rough guess at the types of things people will be searching for, which might lead them to the client’s web site – but a good SEO manager like Oxbridge Content will be able to work out which phrases might be most frequently entered in order to lead customers to the target web site. This is done partly by looking at which entries on search engines have led the users to the website previously – something which can be done by analysing the statistics of information stored by a site or computer – but it should also include phrases which haven’t been leading to the target site, but should be. For example, the phrase ‘best hotel Cotswolds’ may well have been directing users to a rival organisation at the top ranking of the search engine results page. But this doesn’t mean that the rival is better than the client. It just means that the website has more effective search engine optimization in place. With investment in good quality search engine optimization management, you can take that top spot without changing too much of your web site content; in search engine optimization, small alterations make all the difference.

– How search engines work. Relevance and popularity are rather abstract terms, and search engines’ job of identifying them and ranking websites in their order is a difficult one. Therefore, many different techniques are used, all of which should be considered by an experienced SEO manager. Editing of content to include the optimal percentage of ‘key words’ and ‘key phrases’ (too few and they won’t show up on the search engine rankings, too many and the search engines will identify them as anomalous and irrelevant, and will ignore the page), editing of HTML and other codings to the same ends, promoting a site through third party hosts by use of ‘back links,’ or ‘inbound links,’ which refer back to the target website and increase popularity and visibility.

With all these factors to consider, improving a website’s popularity and visibility through search engine optimization can seem daunting to the business person or entrepreneur getting to grips with internet, or ‘viral,’ marketing. But luckily, there are now many agencies which will take over the adaptation of a website to be SEO friendly, for a very reasonable price, taking a huge burden from the shoulders of the business manager. Some web design agencies offer search engine optimization as part of their services, and some web content writing agencies will also do this, especially when it comes to the creation of articles containing ‘key words’ or ‘key phrases’ for the website or for back links on third party sites. Oxbridge Content falls into the second group, and is one of the best agencies for all-inclusive SEO content.

The author of this article has expertise in search engine optimization. The articles on SEO reveals the author’s knowledge on the same. The author has written many articles on search engine rankings as well.