Search Engine Optimization, often abbreviated as SEO, is the art of helping search engines understand your website content so they can in turn help people find your website. This traffic to your website is from the organic search results, which are FREE, so it is crucial to get this right!
Search engines use hundreds of signals from your website and many more from outside sources to determine which keywords are relevant for your message and therefore your ranking in the search results. What can you do about it?
How can Google and Bing find you if your website never mentions a term you think is relevant to your brand? They can't! The first step in ranking well is to put your very best content out there. Perhaps a few sentences is enough for a customer that already knows what you do, but not for someone that has never heard of you before. A search crawler is a clueless visitor each and every time it visits your website.
You need to talk about yourself and your products, but never stuff keywords into your content. Search engines have gotten much smarter over the years, and in fact may penalize you for trying to game the system. The content should flow so it is still natural for a person reading it. When this is done right, good SEO is actually a side effect of your excellent content.
Not every search engine uses links from other websites to calculate your rank, but Google sure does! However, you cannot just buy links from spammy sites and expect your rank to go up (hint: it might for the short term, but eventually a penalty will catch up with you). This can be a lot of work, but it will pay off if some very influential websites link to you. Stack Overlap can help you find these good links and avoid the bad ones.
Search engines notice when someone follows a search result to your site and quickly returns for a different result. If this happens enough, you can expect other search results will start to appear before yours. One way to fight bounce is to have compelling content that is easy to navigate. Ask us for a free website analysis if you are not sure.
Search engines, and also social media sites, have well documented methods to provide content hints in your website's source code. These hints go beyond keywords and descriptions, including location, product data, social connections, and other listing enhancements. When this meta data is missing, search engines make a guess and you hope for the best. A good website does not ignore the content under the hood. (Press F12 in a desktop web browser if you want to see it.)
If your website gets hacked, it won't take long for Google to notice it. WordPress is one of the worst offenders, but it can happen to practically any website. When they do notice, you will receive a penalty that will demote your website in the search results and cause you to lose all of that free traffic. Keep your website update to date! Good security is good for your business and the web overall. A monthly maintenance plan with Stack Overlap can handle this.