Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is basically a process of increasing the quality and volume of traffic to a website via a search engine result which is purely organic and not paid. The higher the website appears on a search result, the greater the chance of traffic going to the website. Therefore not only does it create a web presence for a website but has spawned a global industry of advertising and SEO experts. On the other hand, paid links does not constitute SEO but SEM, Search Engine Marketing.
The Olden Times
The concept of SEO started during the mid 90s during the early stages of the World Wide Web explosion. It was a time when the Search Engines began cataloguing the websites by a crawling program which would extract external links from a website and then add it to the search engine database. The concept of using meta tags as a guide to describe the web page content proved inaccurate as irrelevant sites got higher ranking due to false meta-tagging and manipulated link building
In 1998, things started to change when the dynamic duo who founded Google started to develop an algorithm which would rank pages based on the volume and strength of inbound links. The idea was called Page Rank and in its early avatar it ranked pages based on the fact that a website will be reached by a user through links if he/she is randomly surfing the Net. This was the big bang moment for the Internet, however despite the ideas success there were many ways how a webmaster could manipulate search engine optimizing using deceptions link spamming. Sometimes up to 1,000 websites were created as a link building exercise to the main website. However, Google has been able to use several new methodologies to rank a website; these methodologies are both confidential and patented.
Ranking is Dead
In early 2005, search engine behemoth Google started to customize search results depending upon the previous history of searches. This would in affect end the concept of ranking, as customization depended on user preferences. As preference would be different for different users – the concept of ranking made sense; however the process of listing or indexing sites on Google is constantly evolving and the algorithms are getting more complex as search engines are battling with web site administrators and others who want to manipulate the system.
Methods to Madness
– Indexing: As a start, the website has to be added to the Google, Yahoo, and others which can be done in variety of ways. Such as paid for submission which may not guarantee the ranking though, For example Google asks its users to use the Google Webmaster tool to submit the website.
– Crawling Concepts: Search Engines sometimes exclude sites from their database which are not desirable. It programs the crawling application in such a way that the program has set parameters to ignore pages from a website.
– Increase Value: There are many ways a site can get a prominent presence in search engines. Cross linking of content, using relevant keywords which are frequently searched by users. The web design should ensure that the entire content structure avoids link spamming and false tagging.