SEO doesn't have to be a difficult concept to grasp. Inspired by WIRED's 5 Levels series, you'll learn what is SEO in 5 levels of difficulty.
This is a list of winners. The higher your name is on this list, the more you win. There's things you can do to get your name higher on the list.
Lots of people use search engines, especially Google, to find all sorts of things. People click the search results at the top of Google the most. You can make changes to your website to get Google to rank your website higher.
Search engines use algorithms in order to determine the order of pages in their search results. You can influence the hundreds of factors that these algorithms look for in your favor by doing Search Engine Optimization (SEO). SEO leads to higher rankings and more clicks to your website.
High rankings on Google are so valuable because search is different from all other forms of capturing attention. With search you have:
If your website plays by Google's rules and plays to win, you will be rewarded with high quality traffic, more sales, and more trust in your brand.
Google's ranking algorithm can be summarized in 3 parts: prioritizing webpages that are relevant, easy to crawl, and authoritative. If you build and promote your website with Google's algorithm in mind - known as search engine optimization (SEO) - Google in return will rank you higher because you deserve to be at the top. You'll often hear strange phrases like "canonical", "hreflang", and "301 redirect" at this level in reference to areas of optimization.