Why SEO Matters

Description: Should you really be concerned about SEO? If you want a website that receives plenty of traffic the answer is yes - read on to find out why.

If you look up the term ?search engine optimization' on Google (without the quote marks) you'll get over sixty million results in return.

Search engine optimization is big business online, and if you have your own website you need to be delving into some of the vast amount of information available online.

But why does SEO matter so much? What makes it the number one activity you should be doing at all times to help promote your website?

Search engine optimization is the process of designing your website so it can be easily found via the search engines. Unfortunately the process itself is far easier to describe than it is to take part in, mainly because there are so many different areas of SEO to bear in mind. With terms like meta tags, long tail keywords, html tags and content development being thrown around, it's small wonder that newcomers to the webmaster role are daunted by the thought of optimizing their site.

The one big advantage of SEO is that you can tackle it bit by bit, concentrating on one area at a time and building your knowledge as you go along. Some areas are easier to get a grasp of than others, so it's probably best to leave meta tags and other html elements until you have a bit more knowledge and confidence to build on.

Search engine optimization is important because it can get you ahead of the competition. It's a fact that if two websites are very similar in style and content but one of them is optimized and the other isn't, the one that's put in the effort required to please the search engines will be the one that's getting all the traffic.

The other important thing to remember about SEO is that it's an ongoing process. There may well be a beginning, but there will never be an end. Once the bulk of the work is done you can constantly tweak and test different optimization techniques to see whether you can improve on your current rankings.

But if you think this all sounds like too much hard work, think again. While search engine optimization should always be near the top of your list of things to do, a little bit of effort on a regular basis does have the potential to pay off in a big way. If you are constantly trying out different (but legal) optimization techniques, you are by definition constantly updating your website.

This alone is a key part of SEO. Every time you update your website it has the power to attract the attention of the search engine spiders, which will pick up on the fact that something has changed and will crawl your site to investigate the improvements.

If you've had a website for a while and you had a period of time where you didn't update it at all, you will probably have noticed that your ranking will have slipped somewhat. This is because the search engines will always put fresh sites above stale ones - and that's a great incentive to start exploring the world of SEO a bit more.

Even the learning process will see your ranking start to rise.

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