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Information has always been a commodity. I wonder how people can live without it. In today’s world, the ability to have access to information is increasingly becoming vital. People need information; they want to know where to find it and they want to easily get access to the information they need.
Because we are in the age of the internet and mobile connectivity, people tend to easily search for information on the web. The web can be said to be a storehouse of information, but it contains trillions of pages. How does anyone find the needed information in the middle of it?
Only through search engines like Google, Yahoo or Bing have people been able to efficiently find what they want, what they need and what they’re willing to pay their money for. Because of this knowledge, some companies, businesses and individuals alike have learnt how to make their websites more searchable and appealing. By understanding and speaking the language of those in search of their products or services, these companies and individuals increase their chances of success, whether it’s to build a following, attract clients, sell products or market a service.
They know that if people want something online, they’ll search for it using specific words and phrases. They’ll trust some websites more than others and they will react positively towards certain sites because of basic human nature. This is what search engine optimization (SEO) is all about: preparation, content and understanding.
But SEO is not a button you press or some one time evaluation. SEO is an ongoing process, a way of thinking about your website; preparing and creating its content; connecting via social media and everything else that touches it. It’s about understanding those you hope to connect with, using the right words to describe and support your presence online and to honestly, accurately communicate with the world.
When people open up a web browser for the first time in their lives, one of the first things they want to figure out how to do, is search for something. So whether you’ve grown up online or seen the internet develop from the early days of the world wide web, searching is one of the basic functions of interacting with the web.
Now before the web, if someone wanted to find important information or content, they needed to consult a physical index; whether it was the back of a book, card catalog in a library, or some other printed material. So it was clear from the beginning that the web was going to grow quickly and it did so at an exponential rate. Someone just needed to figure out how to organize things on the web.
Early attempts mirrored an old index way of thinking. Such as building category-based lists that users could browse through. But you needed to understand the structure of it such as what names were used to define things and you had to be willing to dig through multiple levels to, maybe find what you wanted.
It wasn’t perfect, but it was the first way to find things on the web. Website owners wanted to be listed as highly as possible on these lists because being at the top meant that they had a better chance of their site being seen and clicked on. This mentality of ranking near the top of lists continued into the early 2000s until Google emerged as the first really effective platform to search the web, without having to dig through a cumbersome and continually out of date list.
Google then built a system that would pull information from website around the world, index that data, and then provide lists of websites to users, based on search criteria. This was a fundamental shift in how people used the web and, it became faster and more inclusive and accurate everyday.
As people realized the contents on their site effected search results, search engine optimization (SEO) emerged as the ideal strategy to get your site to rank highly on those result pages.
And now, over a decade later, while Google has updated their techniques and algorithm many times, they still remain the primary search engine for the majority of people across the world. Ranking high on search result pages has always been and is still an important mission for brands, businesses and companies alike.