What is SEO?
I remember the first time hearing the term SEO… I was like S-E-what? That’s what I thought in my head, but I nodded my head as if I knew exactly what the other photographers were talking about. It was an industry word thrown around like a football at the Clemson football game, and it was getting scores for those who were actually implementing it. A sweet friend explained it to me better offline, and he told me there were things we can do to our sites and blogs to help us get found by search engines like good ol’ Google. He shared that he focused on getting found for the name of a small wedding venue he loved working at (instead of trying to compete in a very saturated market city), plus the words “wedding photographer.” I was intrigued! I had already been using social media to grow my business, and then I hear there are things I can personally do to help Mr. Google? It was love at first sight, but then I hit a big wall. It was also a man’s world! And worse, a very technical world. I felt like I was watching men from country clubs sit around a table and smoke cigars, and I was out of place. I was turned off for about a second… then I was like, wait—I want to learn more. I started to dig deeper into what SEO meant, watched videos, attended webinars, and I even photographed a major SEO event. I remember being at the event feeling so thankful, and maybe understanding 20% of what the speakers were discussing, but it intrigued me so much! I felt ignited, and I felt that this was what I was meant to do.
Once I started breaking down the technical aspect of SEO and making it practical and part of my everyday workflow, that was when I started seeing results in the form of visits via Google and bookings from random strangers. Click To Tweet
So, let’s get back to the question “what is SEO?” It means there are things you can do with your online presence to help you get found online by search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, and YouTube. These techniques also can help you get found on social media like Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram and Periscope. There are things you can on your websites, blogs and social media to give Google an extra hand. Google uses over 200 ways to rank (list results in pages when someone googles term X), which I call brownie points…and our goal, as we have a business and want to be found online for such business, is to start learning the brownie points so we can be found online, too. There are front-end things you can do, like having text on your page that includes terms you want to be found for or locations you want to be found in. There are also back-end things you can do, like discovering where your page titles and page descriptions can be edited for your site and filling in specific text for each area with unique keywords for your business. There are external things that can be done, like getting other folks to link back to your site or blog or getting visitors to share your content, which gives social proof, which is a major brownie point. You can also reorganize your site so it’s more user friendly, mobile friendly and loads fast. All of these things and more are what SEO entails. It essentially means giving your online presence a boost so you can stand out from the crowd. So when someone throws that jargon here and there, you now know what it is, and next you need to learn more of those brownie points.
Google uses over 200 ways to rank a website, get my list of top 10 Brownie Points every blogger should have!