“I’ve heard of SEO and I know I need it, loads of it! I have absolutely no idea what it is.”
We hear this a lot. It’s jargon so no wonder so many people don’t understand it. But it actually is important. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. Or in English it means making a website easy to understand for search enginesSearch engines are websites that allow us to search for other websites. Like Google or Bing..
Imagine you build the nicest hotel with beautiful luxury rooms, a spa, a gym, a Michelin star restaurant. If it’s built in the woods with no paths leading to it, noone will ever find it. And no matter how many times you redecorate, it’s still hidden away. You can advertise in magazines, tv and radio yes, and you should do that if it’s right for your business. But telling search engines about your website, what you “sell” and who you are is free and it’s how most people find what they are looking for online.
Search engines don’t automatically find your website, they need to be told about it. This is either through some special toolsGoogle Search Console or Bing Webmaster Tools for example, or because your site is linked to from another site that the search engines already know about.
And when they do visit your site to add it to their search engine results, it’s not a human that’s visiting but something called a spiderA spider is a software program that follows links on webpages and collects valid information.
These spiders don’t see your site the way we see it. They mostly see the code behind the site – the ugly gobbledygook – similar to the picture shown here.
SEO is largely about making sure that the gobbledygook is clear and contains all the relevant information those spiders are looking for so that the search engines can make sure that your site gets in front of the right people.
(There is a lot more to SEO. If you are interested, please read more here)