SEO, or search engine optimization, is the term used to describe the process of driving a website to be more popular on search engines such as Google, Yahoo, etc. When people search phrases or words in a search engine (also known as keywords), the results and the order that they appear in is the direct effect of SEO.
Do you need SEO?
Generally most businesses would answer this question with a resounding yes, however how much you choose to invest into SEO is dependent upon how you want to do business. A lot of business that you generate most likely derives from word of mouth referrals, however, studies from Forrester Research shows that 93% of consumers worldwide use search engines to find and access websites buy quality backlinks.
Consumers are significantly more likely to initiate contact and purchase a product or service from a business that they can find online. If your site can’t be easily located online, then your business is missing out on substantial prospective business.
How does SEO work?
There are a lot of factors concerning SEO. The keywords you choose and the popularity of the search for them and the competition that you have with those keywords are just the beginning. The titles, descriptions, url names, html framework/validity, tags and how they are used are also crucial factors. Backlinks to your site and popularity are also factors. There are hundreds factors and penalties that search engines use in order to deploy SEO. SEO could easily be likened to chemistry. Which brings me to my next point:
Should you hire someone for SEO?
Absolutely. It is possible for anyone to learn, but let’s be honest, you have a business to run. SEO takes a lot of time to learn, employ, and maintain. For most business owners to become expert SEO analysts is unreasonable, but you should be armed with the knowledge of what you need to be more successful from SEO, and what to expect from anyone you employ to do it.
In order to have an effective SEO campaign, I would strongly urge anyone to employ an SEO professional. Fortunately, a lot of web design firms specialize in SEO, has someone on staff that does, or can refer you to someone. If your designer does not – there are plenty on the market.