How Does Search Engine Optimization Work?
Search Engine Optimization Drives Online Sales
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the cornerstone of ecommerce sales success, and is a process that improves the function of your online customer acquisition tool (aka: your website). It is important to understand the basics of how a search engine works in order to understand how that search engine affects your bottom line (aka: sales).
On the internet, search engines exist to aggregate information about webpages they can identify and collect from websites, to present as a ranked list of search results. To accomplish this, search engines all use mathematical algorithms (aka: searchbot, web crawler, search spider, etc) that are designed to identify and index all of the information from every page of every website. Based upon the “quality” and amount of page information that is found, the searchbots assign search value based on the criteria they were programmed for.
Searchbots Are Created to Collect Page Information
These searchbots are designed by a person to go out and find information that would fit a specific search term used by one of the search engine’s clients - the very same individual that is to be your consumer on your website if all works correctly. The searchbots then “index” that information- sort of like an old-school library index card, filled out with the information (keywords) that you put on your website for the searchbots to find and index. This “index card” is what shows up in the search engine results, so it is important to pay attention to the metadata elements on your pages that speak directly to these searchbots informing them about the content on your site.
Most businesses simply don’t have enough content on their websites, meaning they lack the keywords and backlinks within page paragraphs and sentences that searchbots see as valuable in an online search resource. Try setting a modest goal of adding a paragraph to each of your most visited pages - but look at it as an exercise in adding keywords and backlinks to your site to boost your SEO.
Webpage content is what online searchbots are designed to seek out and index for search engine results, and the process of SEO is basically nothing more than making their job of indexing your website data for search results easier.
Searchbots Only See Text
SEO is far more complex than that obviously. For instance images are not something a searchbot can “see”, rather it sees what keywords you entered in for the picture description when you uploaded the image to your site.
What we often see with our clients who choose the WGR Gap Analysis Service is that this alternative text intended to tell the searchbots what the picture is via words it can “see”, is often missing or just filled in with “Image009” which is not something someone is searching for and is not good for your SEO.
Metadata and Alternative Text for Bots
Metadata such as page metatitle or headings tags are components of text used to instruct the searchbots. Metatitles for your site and pages serve as an “elevator pitch” of sorts, that helps to give the searchbots a concise 160 character breakdown of the data/keywords they can expect to index on that page.
Alternative text (alt text) is equally important to searchbots, as this is the language that you create on your web content back-end that speaks directly to the searchbots. It needs to be a logical sentence full of keywords that searchbots use as a factor in keyword ranking for SEO.
You can perform simple search engine optimization yourself by identifying missing site or page meta titles, which are often found as “summary” blocks in the back-end editing of your site, and these areas simply need filling out with keywords pertinent to your product and search. For more advanced SEO projects and improvements like digital marketing keyword campaigns, or backend-software web development, it is highly recommended that you seek out a qualified ecommerce service provider that specializes in accomplishing what you are trying to achieve.