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The SEO Myth

February 24, 2009

SEO, or search engine optimization, is one of the most misunderstood and misused buzzwords in the web marketing world today. Almost every new client of ours looking to develop or redesign a website always says, "and we also need SEO for our website too," as if it's something you purchase, buy and install on your website. What I'm going to share in this article is the same thing I explain to every client who mentions the three letters S-E-O.

SEO, search engine optimization, or what's better known as attempting to get your site ranked on the first page on Google and other major search engines for particular keywords related to your business or service is often a frustrating, fruitless and sometimes very costly endeavor.

So you say to yourself, but there are companies out there claiming to do just this. True - there are lots of them. But be sure to read any fine print they may provide you. It will always say somewhere something to the effect that no matter what they do, they really can't guarantee anything, at least not for any length of time. Unless the company's name is Google, they cannot guarantee how your site will be ranked by Google.

So what's a business to do? The answer is simple. And it's what we do when we develop every site that we've ever developed for our clients: Create a site that's programmed according to current web development community standards, full of content that clearly communicates your business, product or service.

Yes, really - that's it. It's not a big secret. In fact Google pretty much spells out what they would like you to do to have your site rank well in their rankings. It's available to anyone who wants to read it. It's called Google's Guidelines for Webmasters. Go ahead, take a gander. Also, check out their page on SEO.

Follow these guidelines, and you'll have a better chance of getting ranked higher than the next guy. These guidelines are what we follow to a tee when we develop everyone of our client sites. Do we guarantee top rankings? No. But our client sites end up ranking pretty well pretty quickly, most of the time. It all depends on the content of your site, how it relates to keywords that are typed into Google search, and how much competition there is out there for that type of search term. The rest is all up to Google (or any other search engine).

There are a lot of details as to how a site should be properly designed, programmed and executed so that Google can crawl and index the pages you want it to. These are all details we've already worked into our standard web development process. Here are a few examples of how some of our clients have ranked highly for some of the most important keywords to their businesses:

site: www.medstrat.com
Page 1 keyword rankings on Google: orthopedic pacs, orthopedic digital x-ray

site: www.aquascapeinc.com
Page 1 keyword rankings on Google: fountainscapes, water features, waterscaping

site: www.aerocellpkg.com
Page 1 keyword rankings on Google: toner packaging, wine bottle packaging

Please keep in mind that these links and rankings are current as of February 2009. Google rankings and results constantly change.

Another area we focus on upon completion of a client website is search marketing. Although we do our best to get your site to rank well in Google's organic search listings, there is no guarantee you will get there or how long it may take you to get there. Sometimes sites may not make it to the top page rankings for over a year, or never.

The only way to guarantee your site shows up when someone searches for a particular keyword or phrase is through search marketing, i.e. Google Adwords. Registering for Adwords is like turning on a faucet. Once it's setup and live, which can happen in a matter of 15 minutes, your site will begin to get targeted traffic in the form of visitors who typed in keywords or phrases you determined are good matches for the products or services you sell. There are many features, options and strategies for using Google Adwords. We help all of our web develoment clients learn the ins and outs of search marketing and show them how to manage their campaigns to produce the greatest quality traffic for the least amount of money invested.