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What is SEO? Search Engine Optimization Explained

Updated: Apr 9, 2023

Search engine optimization, or SEO, aims to increase a business' exposure in organic (free) search results.

By having a higher rank and online presence, the company's website receives greater traffic, boosting the chances for more customers.

How Does SEO Work?

To increase a website's visibility, SEO works by:

  • optimizing the content of a website

  • doing keyword research

  • obtaining inbound links

While results are typically visible on the search engine results page (SERP) once a webpage has been crawled and indexed by a search engine, SEO efforts may take months to fully yield results.


This is how search engines choose where to position—or rank—a web page.

Due to content age, competition, and algorithm updates by the search engine itself, a web page's ranking may change over time.


Visibility is the presence of a specific domain in search engine results.

When a domain isn't shown for many relevant search queries, it has a lower search visibility; when it shown for many search queries, it has a higher search visibility.

How Google determine's a page's rank

Search engines have one main objective: to give users the most relevant information.

Their algorithms select the pages that are most relevant to your query each time you use them. Then organize them by authority or popularity, showing the highest ranked ones first.

infographic of types of search engine optimization

What is SEO Strategy?

A comprehensive strategy for increasing website traffic from search engines is known as an SEO marketing strategy.

Both on-page methods, which employ intent-based keywords, and off-page strategies, which generate inbound connections from other pages, are essential to successful SEO.

Technical Setup

  • Website navigation and links

  • Simple URL structure

  • Page speed

  • Broken links or redirects

  • Duplicate content


Keyword research

Keyword research refers to finding and analyzing search queries and phrases that users enter into search engines, with the intent of using that information for SEO or marketing.

On-page optimization

On-page SEO assures that search engines understand the content and keywords of a page and can match it to relevant queries, so it can ultimately appear in the SERP.


Backlinks are links to your content on other websites. You earn a backlink to your website each time another website references your content and directs visitors there.

SEO is an Ongoing Process

Laying the groundwork for SEO in an excellent start, but SEO is a long-term marketing play that ensures your site's ability to rank—and stay there—despite competition.


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