What is Search Engine Optimisation?

Rachael Smith - Monday, December 07, 2015
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a vital part of designing, launching and maintaining a website. Unlike graphic design, branding or technical coding, SEO is an ongoing process, which in order to be utilised effectively must be carried out and checked regularly. Search engines use what are known as ‘bots’ to trawl through websites and their code to detect their keywords, relevant backlinks and technical text such as metadata and alt image tags. If a bot finds that your website is in good standing with the things that it is searching for, your website will be placed higher up in the search results, making it more likely that a customer will find you.

The basic principle of SEO works on keywords and backlinks. Keywords are the words and/or phrases you want your website to be found for when they type into a search engine. Backlinks are links to your website that are posted on other websites, forums, social media sites, blogs etc. – the more relevant backlinks your site has, the higher it will place in search results. However, in order for backlinks to work correctly, they must be relevant to your keywords.

For example, someone could link to our E-Strands homepage using the hyperlink “Web Design”, which is relevant, or someone could link to our homepage using the hyperlink “Olympic swimming pools”, this is irrelevant. The ‘bots’ that generate search engine results see irrelevant links as spam, which can negatively effect your website’s place on the search ranking – the bots see your website as a spamming or misleading website, and decide to not place it high in the rankings.

When thinking about SEO, your main priority is deciding what your keywords will be. Let’s take a fictional company, Bob’s Bouncy CastlesBob’s Bouncy Castles is based in Darlington and allows customers to hire bouncy castles for children’s parties. Bob could try a keyword such as “bouncy castle hire” – but he will be competing with all other bouncy castle companies across the UK. So, he could localise his keywords and try something like “bouncy castle hire Darlington” or “bouncy castle hire Tees Valley”. In order for these keywords to work, his website needs to contain the phrase “bouncy castle hire Darlington” in the text somewhere for the bots to pick up on. 

Another important factor when it comes to keywords is keyword saturation, or the percentage of a webpage’s text that is keywords. If Bob had 100 words on his homepage and four of those words were his keyword “bouncy castle hire Darlington”, that is a keyword saturation of 4%. Too low of a percentage means that the keyword may get ignored, too high of a percentage may make the bots think you are spamming.

Our team at E-Strands can manage your SEO for you. What we do is use SEO programs to analyse the things that search engine bots look for – we make sure that all of the pages on your website are filled with relevant keywords, all of the technical text such as metadata is included, and where possible, advise you on the best ways to add more backlinks to your site. We then will monitor your site’s position the search results ranking weekly. We find the results from the four most used search engines: Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask. Because SEO is an ongoing and gradual process, these positions on search engines need to be monitored, and if they fall – find out why and remedy it – if they rise, continue with what you were already doing. If you are interested in what we can do for you and your business online, please contact us today on: 01642 777808 or e-mail us at: info@e-strands.com.


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