What is SEO and why is it so important?

Junior account executive Nancy Collins-Burgess gives us an insight into search engine optimisation and explains how it can be beneficial to your business.

Search engine optimisation

At this stage, most of us are familiar with the term SEO. The acronym – short for search engine optimisation – is now so popular that it would be unusual to have a discussion about online marketing and web content without it being mentioned.

It may sound like a super technical, intimidating term that only web designers and computer buffs would understand, but when looked at more closely, SEO is actually a simple concept that can be broken down for easier understanding.

We’ve created an easy guide to help you understand what SEO is and why it’s important – and we’ve also included some handy tips for honing your SEO skills.

What is SEO?

SEO is basically recommendations set by search engines to improve the ranking of your website or webpage on their platform.

It is a way of optimising web content so that it complies with the complex search engine ranking algorithms, which consider a number of factors before deciding how to list web page results. In layman’s terms, SEO focuses on the quality of your website and webpage to make sure it is relevant to the user’s search and is fast and easy to navigate.

SEO is, in essence, a set of rules to keep search engines happy. It aims to make search engines more efficient and reliable by filtering search results to make sure they are presented to the user in order of those that would be most useful.

What are some examples of good SEO?

A lot of the rules of SEO are simple and easy to implement. We’ve picked out a few easy changes that can be made to improve your content’s ranking position:

  • Use images to break up text
  • Use headings and subheadings throughout the copy
  • Include key phrases and words to match the terms users would be searching for
  • Make sure the text is easy to read – avoid using jargon
  • Add links to internal and external web pages
  • Write a meta description for your web page

Why is it so important?

The growing importance of a strong digital presence for businesses means that having good SEO is essential. Search engines are used by millions of users each day looking for information, products and services. If you have good SEO, your website will be placed above millions of others, increasing the chances of people visiting your site.

The biggest benefit of SEO is that it can help direct users to your site, helping to meet KPIs and business objectives. Increasing traffic to your company’s web page can have a huge impact on business growth.

Not only does SEO increase the chances of search engine users being directed towards your website, it also improves user experience by making your website more readable and easier to use, reducing the risk of bounce back.

How can you learn SEO?

There are a lot of online courses and training you can do to help learn about SEO and how to optimise your web content correctly.

DistilledU offers great online modules to help improve your understanding of SEO. You can also try before you buy as the company gives you access to three modules for free.

It is also worth having a read through blogs from the likes of Neil Patel, who offers tips and tricks on how to master the art of good SEO and online marketing to help improve your business’ chances of ranking highly on search engines.

Tools like Yoast are also incredibly useful when monitoring the SEO on your webpage. The plug-in, available for free or at a price for the premium version, checks your key word optimisation, the readability of your content and highlights any points that have room for improvement.

Alternatively, if you would rather hire someone to do the leg work for you, we offer a great SEO service where we can optimise content for you and make sure your website is up to scratch. If this is something you are interested in, please do get in contact.

By Nancy Collins-Burgess

Nancy is currently working as an account executive during her first year at Cartwright Communications. She is responsible for working on both B2B and B2C accounts, providing digital support across the company and enhancing the business' brand through campaigns and social media management.