SEO Alchemy – Turn Ideas into Gold

You can have the slickest business idea, coolest looking website with the hottest technology, fantastic rapport with customers with absolutely the right message for your target audience... but if no one finds your website then all that time and effort has been wasted.

People have websites for a variety of reasons: build brand identity and value, give prospective customers a place to find more information, use the site as a way to generate leads for new business, establish a relationship with prospective and existing customers, and to take and process orders. All these reasons benefit from good SEO.

Even if a website is just intended to give existing customers information, or to establish brand identity – it is important that your website perform well in search engine results. If someone is researching you, or has forgotten your exact name or website address they will likely make a search using your business name or the keywords related to your line of business. If you don’t rank very well, they will perceive you to be of lower quality or importance. If they find you at all.

Adword Pay-Per-Click (PPC) or Pay-Per-Impression campaigns are a great way to quickly generate leads but can also become costly. Even if you are relying on an Adword campaign, people are still likely to search for you when they come back. You can’t count on them always bookmarking your site or remembering your address.

Design Chemical SEO Alchemy – Science, not Magic

When unraveling the mysteries of SEO we suggest you keep in mind that there aren’t magic trick shortcuts that will instantly solve your marketing problems, or guaranteed top-ten results on Google for popular search terms.

Maximizing results for your SEO involve many complex issues that are evolving over time. What used to work five years ago to improve internet presence now backfire and can actually hinder your site’s performance.

We’re often asked to help site owners that have already paid other contractors good money for SEO only to find that the techniques being used are actually causing them to be ‘penalized’ by Google instead of rewarded with good results.

The biggest culprit is the old idea of generating lots of links to your site from other websites. Links are very important. But only the right kind of links from quality sites with content that is relevant to your website.

Google considers links between sites as a sign of community and sharing – and quality. They are now protecting the values of community very stringently. Google frowns on reciprocal link exchanges (I’ll link to you if you’ll link to me), and looks for signs that the links are merely intended to try to fool them. Google doesn’t like being made to look foolish. Meaning a travel site linking to a website hosting service is not a good thing. If you have an outgoing link going to a ‘bad’ site – a link farm scheme, or other shady automated system that they have identified, then your search engine results can be severely impacted. When Google sees these kind of links it discounts your content.

The most important thing to keep in mind regarding SEO/SEM is quality. Google and the other major search engines create a Quality Score for your site based on what they think it is about. The underlying key to this is that the search engine spiders that crawl your site looking for information need to be able to understand your site. Quality content is critical, but it needs to be readable by spiders, and shouldn’t be diluted by bad links.

Design Chemical 88-point SEO Guideline Checklist

Acronym Soup

Different people use various definitions and interpretations but it is helpful to get oriented on what the terminology means.

SEM = Search Engine Marketing

SEO = Search Engine Optimization

SERP = Search Engine Results Page

Search Engines

  • Google, Yahoo, Bing, Ask, & dozens more.
  • Google dominates with over 60% of searchers using them.
  • Success there will lead to success elsewhere.

SEM is primarily the work done off your site to bring in traffic either through ‘organic’ (natural searches) or through paid advertising, and other tactics.

SEO is the art and science of making changes on and off your website to make it both “findable” and “readable” by search engines and more relevant to what people are looking for.

Semantics aside, SEO/SEM come together to make sure as many of the right kind of people as possible find your site.

SERP is the measure of how well your SEO/SEM is doing. For any given keyword or phrase where does your page ‘rank’ (order in which it is displayed). The higher on the page, the more likely people will click through to your website.