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What Is Search Engine Optimization?

Terry Boddie, Agency Liaison Director, Marketing Media ManagementGuest Blog post by Terry Boddie, President & Agency Liaison Director at Marketing Media Management


SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is a term that is increasingly used when website owners are developing their websites. SEO is the process of getting traffic from organic search through ranking and showing up higher in search engine result pages. All the major search engines rely on SEO to make sure search results are relevant and useful to the person searching.

Search engine optimization success relies on understanding how the search engines actually function, and how they analyze a website. Search engines send out automated robots, known as crawlers or spiders, which move through links on websites to find and index new webpages. Once the robots have deciphered a webpage, selected pieces of the website’s code is stored in datacenters found all over the world.

Then, when a person searches for something online, the search engine scans their datacenters to find results that are relevant to the search terms, and then rank those search results by usefulness. Search engine optimization aims to increase both the relevance and usefulness of websites, so search engines will find them easier and rank them higher.

Typically, search engines consider the most popular websites to be the most important, and rank them higher. This used to be the main way search engines would provide results, but now advanced search algorithms determine whether this is still true for every search. These advanced algorithms are constantly changing and updating to be able to provide search engine users with the most relevant and useful search engine results, and provide those results as quickly as possible.

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