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Search Engine Optimization (SEO) The Myth?
Search Engine Optimization. Big words. Sounds Important. What is it? If you do a search in google for the web definition of search engine optimization, you get a lot of different results. Some simply say that search engine optimization is the generic term for making sure your site is optimized to appear as one of the top ranking web sites on a search. Others get more detailed with their definition and say search engine optimization is the term used to describe the marketing technique of preparing a web site to enhance its chances of being ranked in the top results of a search engine once a relevant search is undertaken.
A number of factors are important when optimizing a web site, including the content and structure of the web site's copy and page layout, the HTML meta-tags and the submission process. Is it important? That also depends on which definition you believe and who you ask that question to. If you ask someone who runs a business and charges for search engine optimization, they will tell you it is the most important thing you will ever do for your website. At each SEO website, they will tell you they are the number 1 SEO company on the web, even though each of them has a completely different method of optimizing your website. If you ask many self-appointed webmaster gurus in some of the webmaster forums, they will tell you the same thing, then each one will tell you a different way to do it and they will all disagree on the most important aspects of search engine optimization.
So the confusion continues for the average user and the SEO companies love it that way. If the consumer doesn’t understand what you are doing, you don’t really have to do very much and just say you are doing a lot. Most of them would never work on your website on a contingency payment plan, one based on actual results and performance. Some say money back guaranteed, but read the fine print. A lot of these businesses are based on the fact that people who are new to the web and even some of those who have been online for awhile do not know what search engine optimization is. They know that with more and more people coming onto the web for the first time, their business is secure. They can continue to tell people that without their service the website will fail. I’m not saying all search engine optimization companies are rip-offs. Some of them really do their best to get good rankings for their clients and know what they are doing. A lot of them still really believe that search engine optimization is the key to success on the web.
It isn’t. How’s that for a statement? I know a lot of web designers will disagree. I know a lot of SEO companies will disagree. But simply put, search engine optimization of your WebPages is not the most important thing you need to do to succeed on the web. Let’s break down some of the things that are included in the phrase search engine optimization. Metatags are one of the things these gurus tell you is important. Metatags are all but dead. Search engines, especially google, ignore metatags for the most part. Having them in does not hurt you, but go do a search on any topic besides web design or search engine optimization, etc. and you’ll find that IF the websites at the top of the search results have metatags at all, they usually only have the description and keywords metatags.
Well they also have the title tag, which is sometimes referred to as a metatag, but it is actually the only metatag you need to have. Keyword Optimization is something the gurus will tell you is very important. Some will tell you they know the exact percentage of text that should be your keywords. Yes, keywords are very important. Do they know what percentage the search engines will want to read for the best results? No. When writing copy for your website, you must be conscious of the keywords you wish to promote. Don’t pick too many keywords and try to optimize each page of your website for twenty different things. If you do, it will not be relevant for any of them. That isn’t guru talk, that’s just plain old fashioned common sense. Remember that search engines crawl web pages, not web sites.
If you choose just one or two keywords per webpage that you wish that page to be optimized for, then you can optimize the page easily and write text the user will want to actually read. Write your sales text the way you would with only the user in mind and with making sales in mind. Then go back and reread the page. Find places where you can add in your keyword without destroying the flow you created when you wrote the text in the first place. Now, do you need to hire an SEO company to do that? Do you know your product? Do you know how to sell your product? Then you need to write the text. If you do not wish to write the text, then hire a writer. You still don’t need a search engine optimization guru. Some search engine optimization experts will tell you they can increase your link popularity. They use a variety of methods.