Understanding the Basics of Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of trying to get Web pages to rank higher in search engines. For example, when someone does a search on Google, she wants her Web page to be ranked higher than the competition. The holy grail of SEO is to get placement on the front page of a set of search results, preferably positioned as the first result. These results are known as Search Engine Results Page or SERPs.

With massive firms working for clients and advertisers to improve their SERPs, SEO has become a multi-billion dollar industry worldwide. For example, a travel agency might want to rank well for the search phrase “cheap flights to Los Angeles” because it’s a phrase consumers are likely to search for using Google or other search engines. Likewise, “Italian restaurant near Dupont Circle” could be a search phrase an Italian restaurant near Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C., uses in their quest to rank high. Of course, for all the money and research that goes into the SEO industry, the best and most solid SEO practices are things any blogger can, and should, do anyway. WordPress assists in some ways while other practices are simply behavioural habits a blogger should strive for.