Even if you aren’t an expert in the world of digital marketing, you have most likely at least heard of the term SEO. Officially it is “a methodology of strategies, techniques and tactics used to increase the amount of visitors to a website by obtaining a high-ranking placement in the search results page of a search engine (SERP) — including Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines.” What this means is that you optimize and tweak your existing website (or rebuild it) in order to increase the “free” (also referred to as organic) traffic to your website. Google is the largest search engine, holding over 90% of the market share so that is where most marketers tend to focus their efforts. In order to increase traffic, you need more people to be able to find you when they search. This is achieved by improving your websites ranking. Ideally, you want to be on the first page of a related search results as over 90% of google searches live and die on the first page. From there the goal is to work your way to the top. SEO is a continual process of modifying and monitoring. It requires some experience, but ensuring that your website is SEO optimized is crucial in order to stay competitive.

Many believe that any actions taken to try to improve a websites organic rating simply falls under the umbrella of SEO, however it is important to understand the distinction between on-page and off-page SEO. Addressing both areas proves to gain better results in website rankings. On-page SEO is optimizing different parts of your website that affect your search engine rankings. It’s the areas you have control over and can change on your own website. Off-page SEO refers to the page ranking factors that occur off your website, like backlinks from another site, that can be performed outside of to improve your organic search rankings. Put simply, what you rank for is largely determined by on-page factors, while how high you rank in the search results is largely determined by off-page factors.

How Different Variations of SEO Optimization Will Affect Your Rankings