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Search Optimisation



Search Optimisation

Search optimisation is the process by which websites improve their results, and is effected by improving quality and visibility. Search engines need to recognise the site presents useful information, and visitors should achieve their desired goal when coming to the site. In addition the reputation of the business and its brand strength will be improved and protected.

In order to comply with the above statements a website needs to be hosted with a good hosting service; to utilise good, modern, standards-compliant code; to have valuable and unique content; to present an interesting, well-designed, easy to use facility to visitors; to efficiently market products or services where applicable; and to correctly present the enterprise's image.

It can be seen that the overall task is fairly comprehensive. It is progressed by isolating components and working on each in turn, without losing sight of how each contributes to the whole.

The Art of Search Optimisation

Search optimisation is an art, because it consists of applying lessons learned by long experience, together with an aptitude for the task that not all possess. There are technical and marketing components, each of which are vital and cannot be overlooked. These two main factors must be combined in the best way to suit the method the people carrying out the optimisation use, since in general all professionals use slightly different methods.

Some practitioners see their task as mainly that of increasing traffic; some see it as a marketing exercise; some see it as a holistic process that essentially builds brand strength. It seems reasonable to consider search optimisation as a means of increasing website income, and also a way to improve business reputation. In the long term, results are based on reputation and brand strength more than other factors. Of course, these are not narrow concepts, but apply in a multitude of ways to an enterprise's online and offline efforts.

Internet Business

If we regard all Internet business operations as icommerce, then certain generalisations can be made:
  • icommerce is a new and powerful way to do business;
  • Internet business, like any other, is normally seen as a way to make money in a respectable manner;
  • it can turn a local enterprise into a national force;
  • it can turn a national trader into an international force.

Looking at these statements in turn: the Net is a new business medium. Some aspects are entirely new and have no equivalent offline. To make best use of it, the most successful way is to treat it as new and unfamiliar territory. As a powerful business medium it needs to be embraced and utilised to the maximum.

Business on the Net, as offline, can be conducted in an ethical manner or by taking shortcuts. You have the full range of choice here and must choose your path accordingly. It is far easier to take shortcuts on the Net than offline, especially as the law (and more especially the means of enforcing the law) has not yet caught up with the new medium and lags far behind. Many services are on offer that may or may not comply with community standards, and you should choose carefully.

On the Net a small local enterprise, operating in a niche market, can become a major player. The Net is vast - so large it cannot really be measured any more, and certainly not mapped - and so the possibilities are endless. A business can evolve in one of two ways: become a conspicuous supplier in their market, or stay as just another invisible enterprise among the millions of others out there. It's easy to be either, you only need to make a decision or no decision.

A national trader can become a major international force on the Net. Trade is fully international now and those who neglect this aspect can be losing 50% of potential business or more. The Net makes international commerce something that many businesses can take part in - and since it has the potential to double your turnover it cannot be ignored. The key is correct search optimisation, since ethical SEO consultants who do the job properly - as against keyword promoters - will be able to help you organise your business to take advantage of all the opportunities.

Project Timescales

An ethical search optimisation project lasts a minimum of three months. It isn't something that can be applied one week, and results seen the next.

When you look at the scale of the task - adjusting server settings, adjusting site code, adjusting site architecture, adjusting content, adding content, working on marketing, improving usability, improving offsite factors, building links, training the site owner - you'll see there is no way this is a five-minute job. It is extremely labour intensive and skill-based.

It will be six months before the full effects of a minor project are seen. A series of projects, or a major project, will take a full year to see their total effects. However there is a graph of revenue increase v time; and results improve dramatically at between one month and six months, depending on the type of site. The graph is steep here. At one year the curve has levelled out but is still climbing slowly.

Different Types of Website

Search optimisation is different for various types of site. There is no one-size-fits-all solution here. A small new ecommerce website has different requirements to a large portal site.

The first step that our organisation takes is to look at the business plan, since we operate mainly as icommerce consultants rather than search engine submitters. We try to evaluate the goals of the business and how best to achieve them, comparing that with how the operation runs currently.

We can do this because we are both business advisors and experienced in website technology, which allows us to recommend solutions that may not otherwise have been considered. There is also the problem that many businesses are running on website technology that was strictly an afterthought, bought in because it seemed the right thing to do at the time. Ideally, website business applications - as any website machinery is - need to be specified and implemented with the assistance of consultants, and not just purchased because it looked good.

It has been found that to try and fix business problems caused by poor website technology is just plastering over the cracks. A better solution is to look at where quality can start to play a part in the operation, and make the necessary changes.

Successful Search Optimisation

A business needs to optimise results in all areas. That will mean income, brand strength, reputation, visibility, and even international presence for many.

If your search optimisation consultants help you to achieve these goals then you chose the right ones.
Web Business Managers