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Search Engine Optimization 101

Thursday, November 5th, 2009 by | Filed Under: Web Design
 
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A mall with very few foot prints will never make money. Similarly, without enough page hits, a website can only dream of the big bucks. Unless you’re Amazon.com or some such well-known site, you will need some way of driving people to your website.

Advertising and Search Engines are two options that you can use to achieve this. Search Engines direct traffic to your website by enabling people to find your website, based on search criteria. This, in turn, gets your website more page hits. Therefore, optimizing your website so that Search Engines display your website on the first page and hence direct traffic is necessary. This tip looks at why Search Engine Optimization is important.

Search Engines – The Dilemma

The problem with Search Engines is that they produce a litany of results. For example, suppose you are looking for a USB Multimedia Speaker Set to connect to your computer. In Google, you would type “USB Multimedia Speaker Set” and the results are:

image

In the image above, Google produced a list of 391,000 web pages that meet the search criteria specified in the Search field. No prospective customer will wade through all of the search results. Rather they’ll stop after the first couple of pages. As a matter of fact, most people don’t even go beyond the first page. Therefore, with millions of people using Search Engines to locate products and information, it is imperative to optimize your website so that it displays on the first page for the keywords specified. In this case, WorldStart is the most optimized site for the specified search keywords, hence Google has listed (ranked) it first.

List of Search Engines

The top three Search Engines used today are: Google, Yahoo, and Bing. However, there are loads more. Mentioned below are some more Search Engines that you may not have heard of:

WebCrawler

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MetaCrawler

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All the Web

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Ask

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Search Engine Algorithms

Some fairly high-tech algorithms are used to produce the results. Each Search Engine has its own proprietary Search Engine. As a result, Search Engine results vary from one to another. For example, the results for “USB Multimedia Speaker Set” when using Bing are shown below.

image

Notice that the WorldStart product does not feature in the top 10 (first page). What does this mean to a website owner?

If a potential customer is using Google, the probability of that customer entering the WorldStart store is very high because Google ranked it first. However, if potential customers are using Bing, then they would most probably click the link that leads to www.everythingusb.com or www.ciao.co.uk. Does this mean that we have to optimize a website for all Search Engines?

In the ideal world, you would! However, since approximately 65 % of Search Engine users search with Google, your website must be optimized for Google. Yahoo and Bing have only 16 % and 11 % market share.

Regardless of the Search Engine being used, the fundamentals of Search Engine Optimization (SEO 101) do not change. In the SEO 201 tip, you will learn the factors that contribute to the ranking of your website in search results. Another interesting tip on Search Engine Optimization is Basic Web Page SEO.

~Rupen Sharma

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