What is Search Engine Optimization—and Why Do I Need It?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a strategy that allows your business website to rank higher in the organic search results for various keywords that your target demographic is searching for. The higher your website ranks in the search results, the more free traffic that will come to your website.

As complicated as it may sound and seem, SEO isn’t rocket science. There are no shortcuts or quick paths to the top. Consider it more along the lines of a marathon than a 50-yard dash. Read on to learn more about SEO and things you can do to help drive more free traffic to your business website.

Types of SEO

There are two different types of SEO—on-site and off-site. If you’re trying to get your website ranked higher for keywords in a competitive niche (including but not limited to real estate, medical, finance, legal, and eCommerce), you will need heavy off-site SEO to improve your chances of ranking well for those keywords.

On-Site SEO

On-site SEO deals with the optimization of the elements of your website. This includes:

  • The speed of your website
  • The quality of your content (pages with thin to no content can actually harm your rankings)
  • The design of your website
  • Misc. things such as broken links, poorly optimized images, and duplicate content
  • Title tags, META tags, URLs
  • And many more!

The end goal of on-site SEO is to allow both Google and your visitors to have a better user experience. For example, if you have poor quality content, broken links, or a slow website, this could cause people to hit the “Back” button on their browser and go visit your competitors. Google takes notice of this and can penalize your website for having poor on-site SEO.

Off-Site SEO

In a nutshell, off-site SEO refers to how many relevant, trustworthy, and high-powered websites link back to yours. While there are many other factors that Google takes into consideration, the amount, quality, and power of the links pointing at your website play an important role in determining how high you rank in the search results.

This is why it’s essential to build links to your website. It shows Google that other websites think that you’re important and trustworthy enough to link back to. For purposes of this blog post, we’re going to stop here as it could take several blog posts to fully explain off-site SEO.

This general and simplified overview should be enough for you to understand the various basic principles of both on and off-site SEO.

Why Does Your Company Website Need SEO?

In addition to ranking higher for your intended keywords and subsequently driving free traffic from the search engines, there are several other reasons why you should engage in SEO for your business website:

It Helps Build Your Brand

Adding high-quality content to your company website allows you to build your brand. It provides information, ideas, culture, and helps you establish a target audience.

Competitive Edge

As you continue to perform SEO by optimizing your website, it helps you stay one (or more) steps ahead of your competitors. As the weeks and months go by, you’ll most likely start to notice that you’re pulling ahead of competitors who have neglected to optimize their websites. This can lead to greater brand recognition and improved traffic.

A Better User Experience

The end goal of your business website is to sell your products or services. As such, you need to provide a good user experience—such as relevant and informational content, easy-to-use navigation, and mobile friendliness, to name just a few. A good user experience will help improve the trust factor in new or potential customers.

Allows Your Ideal Customers to Find You Online

Consider how many people haven’t heard of your brand or website. They’re out there on the internet right now looking for your products or services. SEO can help them find you and encourage them to make a purchase or pick up the phone and call.

More Free Traffic

Those who rank on page 1 in Google tend to get the lion’s share of free traffic. As you continue to optimize your website for SEO, you should see an improvement in traffic levels.

You Don’t Have to Pay for Ads

The cost of online advertising (Google/Bing Ads, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) can be extremely high. SEO doesn’t require you to pay lots of money for ad space on someone else’s website. And once you turn off the paid ads, they disappear from the internet entirely. The SEO work performed on your website, on the other hand, will stick around even if you stop optimizing your site.

SEO Auditing and Consulting in Dallas

If you’re ready to optimize your website for increased traffic and improved branding, the first place to start is getting a free SEO Audit. This will tell you exactly where you are and what needs to be done to start getting traction.

The Witmer Group has been helping Dallas businesses for well over ten years. We offer a wide range of SEO and digital marketing solutions and can create a customized marketing strategy that will help your business remain competitive.

Give us a call today at (214) 865-9484 or contact us via our website to learn more about the various marketing and data analytics services we offer our Dallas clients.