Introduction to Search Engine Optimisation

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) boosts your ranking on Popular Search Engines.
Search engine optimisation is the process of making sure that your website performs well on search engines by boosting your organic ranking on popular search engines securing a better position than your competitors’ websites. The process of SEO must be constantly monitored and re-adjusted to suit your website’s changing SEO needs. Part of this process is monitoring your web statistics and lead performance of your website.

There are two key factors to remember for SEO, namely on-page optimisation and off-page optimisation:

On-page optimisation has to do with several factors on a web page, namely:
Content:
A website that is lacking in relevant content will never perform very well, you need to offer your clients and prospective clients a wealth of relevant information. People want to research products and services before making purchasing decisions; they want to know who you are and why you are the best company to fulfil their needs. If there is no content on your website, clients will go elsewhere and the search engines cater to this need by promoting websites will lots of relevant content and punishing those with little or no relevant content.
Imagine having your shop with no or very little stock in it and lots of empty shelves, this would not do much to draw customers and keep them browsing your goods.

Complaint code:
SEO friendly web design requires clean, high quality code. Web Standards compliance ensures that your code is clean and high quality. This ensures that web crawlers can easily index your website and, in turn, the reward is higher rankings for your website with the popular search engines, like Google.

Page structure:
Research shows that people move away from one website to another if they do not find what they are looking for, or if something does not grab their attention within 7 seconds. This cannot be achieved if it is difficult to navigate your website, or if your content is not easy to read. The bottom line is that your website must be simple with lots of relevant content. The same as when you pick up a book or document, you want to be able to easily read and understand it.
Popular search engines cater for the needs of people that are using them to ensure that they find what they are looking for. All popular search engines reward those websites that are easy to navigate. They also reward websites that captivate their visitors with website content that easily provides what visitors are looking for.

Page title:
All popular search engines use the </title> tag to display in their search results, making it easier to find and index the page. Not having a page title, or having one that is not meaningful means that the search engines are going to rank another website with a relevant page title above yours. Prospective clients are more likely to click on a search result that is meaningful to their search term. If you don’t have a page title or it is not meaningful to a search, then prospective clients are less likely to select your website.

Alternate Text Tag:
Content, as discussed above is of utmost importance to drawing and retaining your clients and prospective clients, but what if that content is images showing your visitors pictures of your products or services. Popular search engines like Google cannot see the image, and the file name may not be descriptive enough, so you will use an Alternate Text tag, or Alt Tag to describe the image.
For example, “seo.gif” would not be as helpful and descriptive as “Introduction to Search engine optimization Article”. Imagine receiving a price list from a supplier that only provided you with the stock codes, you may know what some of them are, but you are going to struggle to find what you are looking for. By adding the description to the stock code you can easily navigate the price list.

Meta tags:
Meta description and Meta keyword tags can be described as a summary outlining the most important points on your page. These Meta tags are used by popular search engines to identify the most important aspects of your website. Although most search engines do not place the same level of importance on Meta description tags and Meta keyword tags as they used too, the use of meta tags is still a useful tool for your website and should still be used.

Correct keyword placement:
Search engine optimisation is all about relevance, Google and other popular search engines are trying to ensure that their users find exactly what it is they are searching for. To achieve this, the popular search engines try to display only the most relevant websites within their top search results and so websites that put effort into displaying only relevant content on their pages get rewarded and those that do not, get penalised. Thus correct keyword placement is of utmost importance when designing a website for search engine optimisation.
Be sure to use keywords that are relevant to your website, making sure that the content on your website includes those keywords that are easy to read as well as search engine friendly, avoid turning out mechanical sounding content. You should also avoid misuse of your keywords and over use of your keywords as this can cause lower rankings for your website.


Off-page optimisation, quite simply put, can be defined as the way you would go about making your website popular.
Search engines measure your website’s popularity by looking at what websites you are linking to (out bound linking) and more importantly what websites are linking to your website (in bound linking). This is called link popularity. Popular search engines determine the following factors when looking at link popularity:

How popular are the websites linking to you?
If very popular websites, like HP, are linking to your website, it shows that you yourself must be popular. This increases your organic ranking.

How popular are the websites that you are linking to?
Although this is not as weighted as inbound linking, offering relevant links to your visitors increases your popularity.

Are the websites that are linking to you (inbound) relevant to your website?
If the popular website linking to your site is not relevant, visitors are not going to stay on your site for very long. It was not what the visitor was looking for and so your rank will be negatively affected by links that have little or no relevance.

How many websites are linking to your website?
Obviously the popularity of sites linking to your website increases your popularity. Imagine that many other popular shops are mentioning you with regards to the services or products you are offering, this will increase the public’s awareness and confidence in your company, and will bring many more feet through your door.

By combining both on- and off-page optimisation, your website will prosper increasing your organic ranking and your return on investment. Jasper Consultants has a dedicated team to help you with your SEO and that can monitor your website’s online performance.