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SEO - Search Engine Optimization

Kimberly Clay

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Search engine optimization is a part of search engine marketing. It involves optimizing a website based on selected keywords and keyword phrases to improve the website's traffic and rank in search engine results.

SEO requires research and analysis to make website improvements which affect the success of a website by improving the volume and quality of traffic to the site. The volume of visitors to a site is obviously important to increasing the opportunities for attracting clients or customers. Traffic quality is key in getting those visitors who have used a specific keyword or phrase to find the website to then take a desired action, such as requesting information, downloading information or making a purchase.

There exists a wide variety of SEO techniques to achieve optimization, all of which focus on basically two areas: webpage or onpage optimization (manipulating information/visible site content that is included on the webpage), and off-page optimization or linking. It is important to understand two things about search engine optimization: SEO is essential to the marketing success of your website, and SEO is an ongoing process, not a one-time procedure.

Entrepreneurs developing websites have basically two options relative to SEO; to do search engine optimization themselves or to enlist a professional SEO consultant or firm to do the work.

Recommendation For An SEO Professional

There are innumerable SEO firms, consultants and web design firms that offer SEO services.

Here are some things to look for when selecting an SEO:

Where does their website rank in search engine results for the site's keywords or phrases?

This seems very obvious, but if a firm claiming to be SEO experts own a website that doesn't rank well (in my estimation, at least a 5 or better on Google's PageRank), how good could they be at improving yours? (The only exception to this rule is if the site is new. In that case, check their previous website, or the site of their previous SEO employer.)

What is the fee?

You need to understand that SEO fees range widely! Paying a smaller fee is not an indication that you are getting a better deal. Ask what services are included within the fee. While you don't need detailed specifics right away (and until they evaluate your site, they can't give you that information anyway), they should be able to describe generally what techniques they will use to optimize your site (what is their overall approach to SEO, what site characteristics they will analyze and change, how will they accomplish link-building, etc.). After you get that information in relationship to the fee, and in consideration of what results you want to achieve, then do a cost comparison using an ?apples to apples? comparison approach.

What is their track record? How long have they been in business or doing SEO?

Look at current or previous clients and their level of satisfaction with services.

Does the individual or firm belong to professional organizations that are indicative of their expertise, professionalism and an acceptable level of customer satisfaction?

Last, what is your gut feeling?

How does the SEO consultant or firm representatives treat you, especially when you ask questions? Do they seem knowledgeable? Do they welcome questions and encourage you to compare their services? Are they confident about assisting you to improve the SEO for your site? Do they seem willing to develop a relationship with you and your business over the long term?

Answering the above questions will help you to get a sense of whether or not you are dealing with a reputable firm, one that will be an asset to you in the development of your online enterprise, and one with which you will be satisfied and have an acceptable level of comfort.

A Few Things To Watch Out For:

  • If the SEO consultant or representative is in any way "pushy" or attempts to rush your selection of an SEO firm, you probably should walk away. Quickly.

  • If they seem in any way annoyed by questions or reasonable requests for information, that's a red flag.

  • Again this is obvious, but if the consultant suggests any type of ?black hat? techniques, run, do not walk, in the opposite direction.

  • If they offer to submit your site to 1,000 search engines, this is a point of concern. Although there are many search engines on the Internet, many of which are smaller and less well known, there are basically 3 or 4 search engines that matter in terms of SEO ranking (Google, Yahoo, MSN, Ask Jeeves). And of those, Google matters most.

  • If the SEO consultant automatically generates web content for your site using a tool rather than copywriting, find another SEO.

If you choose to do search engine optimization on your own, we recommend SEO Elite
. It is the SEO tool of professionals and the beginner's best friend. For more information and to purchase SEO Elite:

Click Here To Purchase SEO ELITE


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