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What is Search Engine Optimization?


by Hugh Duffy


Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the volume and quality of traffic a web site or web page receives from search engines organically (e.g., no pay per click, without using paid advertising) so that your website generates leads, and ultimately, new business for your accounting practice.

While search engine optimization sounds simple and easy to do, it takes considerable planning, knowledge, work and takes time to deliver results. As more and more businesses employ search engine optimization into their internet marketing strategy, the more competitive it becomes. And as the use of the internet has grown, the forms of optimization has expanded beyond search engines to include video optimization in YouTube, mobile optimization for smart phones, and local search optimization for Google Places/Yahoo Local/Bing Business Portal.

Search engine optimization is mostly technical in nature, combining source code programming with business marketing, web site architecture, visual presentation, persuasion copy writing, and some other disciplines woven into one to attract more prospects and visitors. Because of the labor intensive work involved, virtually all web site developers do not factor search engine optimization into the construction of your website because it's hard for the client to visibly see and would drive up the cost to develop the website. The rules are constantly changing and the number of venues are increasing (websites, mobile websites, videos, local search, etc.), which adds to the complexity.

Search engines have become a huge business and are always working towards improving their technology to crawl the web more extensively and deliver better results to users. However, there are limits to the how the web site is constructed, which programming languages they work with, and whether the search engine will index the web site. Whereas the right changes can deliver thousands of new visitors to your web site, the wrong moves can hide or bury your web site deep in the search results where visibility is minimal. That's why your goal should be to have a "search engine friendly" website that makes it easy for the major search engines to index your website.

When done properly, search engine optimization is amazing. However, it takes significant work to do properly and takes several months to start producing results. Get started now!!

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Hugh Duffy, BYF CEO and Co-Founder

Hugh is the consummate marketing coach for accountants and takes pride in the impact that it has on their practice, and lives. Hugh has more than thirty years of marketing experience. Since 2003, he has been teaching accountants on how to improve their marketing and make more money from their accounting practice.