Many think that SEO involves putting certain words into your site in the hope of tricking search engines into sending visitors. This is not the case. SEO is not a process that you apply to a finished site, but instead is part of every aspect of a site, especially the content. Writing good content is it’s own SEO, and there is no dark magic to it.

Search engines want to be like people

The purpose of a search engine is to provide relevant results to searches. The best way to achieve this is to understand what the person is searching for, and present them with the most appropriate options. Search engines are continually becoming better at filtering out spammy, “optimised” content and keeping genuinely useful and relevant content.

People tend to assume that search engines have different needs than human users. The natural response to this thinking is to try to feed as many “keywords” to the search engines in the hope that this will tap into large streams of users. This doesn’t work, and flies in the face of what the search engines want.

Write quality content

Your site should be valuable to people. That is the first goal. Trying to stuff as many keywords into headings, titles and links doesn’t work, and only serves to annoy your users and cheapen your site. If your content can be skimmed over and understood, it will be appreciated by both search engines and your users too.

The main thing to remember is to write for the benefit of your users. Keep the text clear and concise, ensure the titles and headings are pithy and explanatory. Most of all, ensure that the content is relevant.

Make regular updates

Many search engine optimisation people will point out that you should create “landing pages”, or pages that focus on a specific topic, in order to maximise the breadth of searches that arrive on your site. This is only half right. Landing pages can be bad for users, they present a barrier to your real site and get in the way.

The best way to maximise your exposure is to add regular, useful content to your site. If you know and understand your business, it should be easy to find topics to write about. People will find it interesting, your site will be more trustworthy and successful, and you’ll get more people finding your site in the search engines.

The internet is a community, and by being part of the community you will stand a better chance of getting the attention your site deserves.