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Your business now has a website, but how do you get more traffic to that website? And more importantly, how do you get the right kind of traffic; the visitors who are searching for what you are providing? The key is understanding how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) works. SEO is the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic through organic, or non-paid, search engine results. Search engine results drive the majority of online traffic, so if you want your website to grow it is important to understand why the big search engines place search results the way they do.

How Does SEO Work?

Search Engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo are vast and complex answer machines. They achieve this through several steps:

1. Crawling programs search the internet for content.

2. Indexing stores and organizes this content in a huge database. Search results show these indexed pages.

3. Search engines sort the index of content, showing more relevant content first.

Search Engine Results Page (SERPs)

When you perform a search you’ll land on a search engine results page, also called “SERPs”. Today’s results contain a mix of paid advertising, feature snippets, answer boxes, as well as organic results. SEO focuses on improving those organic, non-paid results. Online searchers tend to see organic results as more credible than ads, and these pages receive more clicks than paid search results. While advertising needs to be constantly funded, good SEO can pay for itself over time with quality content and the right mix of keywords, you will receive a steady flow of traffic to your site.

Improving SEO

There is a wealth of information on how to improve your SEO provided by the search engines themselves. Google and other major search engines recommend a few key points when designing your site:

1. Provide strong, high-quality content that is easy to access with clear and relevant page titles.

2. Make sure your website works, pages load quickly and properly with no errors.

3. Links to other sites are the online equivalent of a word-of-mouth recommendation and help get you noticed and make you appear more trustworthy.

4. Poor quality, thin content, automatically-generated content, deceptive pages, spammy keywords, or abusive link schemes can lower your website’s place in the rankings or see it delisted.

Keyword Research

Improving SEO means understanding what your clients want and knowing what they are searching for. Understanding what keywords to try and rank for takes research but is a critical step for further optimization of your SEO.

A commonsense rule of thumb is to design your website for the best possible user experience rather than trying to exploit loopholes in Google’s machine.

SEO is a deep subject with many in-depth guides located online and there are many places on the internet you can educate yourself on the subject. Understanding the basics can go a long way to improving the size and quality of traffic to your website.

Want to know more about how X(US) Hosting helps clients build their business through SEO best practices? Contact us to learn more!

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