Director of SEO for the Chicago Tribune/435 Digital, Carolyn Shelby, recently explained the value of basic search engine optimization during a speech at a SES Conference. According to Search Engine Watch, Shelby stated that SEO is an essential tool to positioning a website so that it is in front of potential customers. In a nutshell, SEO communicates a website's intentions to search engines so it can match the platform with relevant searches.
According to Shelby, search engines look at four key things when ranking websites:
The content should communicate the theme of the page and include well-written descriptions and finely-honed titles.
Search engines pay attention to how fast pages load and whether they are working properly.
For optimal SEO, a website should have enough content to link to that is backed by authoritative sources.
How a website site appears to its audience, how secure it is and how easy it is navigate all collaborate to create the user experience.
Making sure a website has the basics – a solid infrastructure, word architecture, a content management system and rich content – sets the platform up for effective SEO results.