Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is one of the trickiest endeavors among the entire scope of website development. There is a huge misconception about what it takes to reach the top of search engine results and this mostly due to dishonest advertisers making false claims and guaranteeing you those top search engine results. No matter how educated one is in the field of SEO, nobody can ever make that guarantee.
In all reality, Search Engine Optimization is not a trade secret. Any SEO Company claiming that they have a secret formula for reaching top search engine rankings is merely using lies to initiate a sale. The real trick behind SEO is the time that you put into it.
Internal SEO and External SEO.
Internal Search Engine Optimization: This is the skillful process of developing your website in such a way that it is optimized for search engine crawlers in order to ensure that all of your pages are being crawled correctly and that the algorithms are reading your pages for the relevant content that it provides to the visitors. Every single page of your website must be individually Search Engine Optimized in order to provide the best possible results for that page. When you optimize a page, you are generally attempting to make that page accessible through search engine queries based on very specific keywords or phrases. And in doing so, you must make those keywords and phrases entirely relevant to the content on that page as well.
A very common mistake for most people is the use of nofollow relationships to their outgoing links. Many people think that by asking Search Engines to not follow their outgoing links that it will prevent those external sites from stealing SEO points from their own site. In reality, this is quite the opposite. Major search engines like Google see outgoing links as an exchange of information. It tells Google that you are being a productive member of the Internet community and supplying relevant information in order to make the Internet more productive. Of course, there are times when nofollow attributes are ok for outgoing links but that's a conversation for another time.
External Search Engine Optimization: This is where the real skill takes place. External Search Engine Optimization is the process of performing many tasks outside of your own website. These tasks can include deep keyword and key phrase research in order to keep up with the latest trends so that you can provide content that people are looking for so that you can provide and optimize new content on your site in order to include those latest trends on a regular basis.
External Search Engine Optimization also includes social interaction for the purpose of getting people talking about and linking back to your own website in various other relevant areas of the Internet. The more people are linking back to your site, the more search engines see you as being popular. However, this is not as simple as exchanging links or spamming forums. This will only hurt your ranking a great deal. Backlinks to your site must be relevant to the conversations and websites that are linking to you. And in most cases, many forums and websites add nofollow attributes to their outgoing links which make your website nearly invisible to search engines from that perspective. So the best practice is to get in with certain circles and marketing yourself among specific areas through careful research and demographic details. Interact with the rest of the world and don't expect the search engines to do all the work for you. The less you do, the less the search engines will do for you.
This only touches upon the very basics of Internal and External Search Engine Optimization. However, there is much to consider and even more to do. This is why hiring a real Search Engine Optimization expert can be very expensive. Search Engine Optimization is not simply a set of tasks that are completed and left to do their thing. This may be the case for Internal Search Engine Optimization but External SEO is a full-time job. It's also why External SEO is often a service provided as an 'extra' and not normally included in with the design and development tasks.
It all comes down to one unmitigated truth. The truth is, you "get" according to what you "give". As long as you are providing people with relevant content that they seek, then you are providing the Internet with a valuable product or service. And if you are providing the Internet with a valuable product or service, search engines want you to be visible when those products and services are sought out by the people. There is no way around it and there are no secrets that bypass it. It just is what it is.