SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Put simply, it’s a series of practices you can employ to ensure your content is readable to search engines like Google, so that when users type in keywords into a search engine, your content gets returned to them.
A good way to think about it is that search engines can’t always know what your content is about just by looking at it, like humans can. So, it’s up to you to use keywords within your copy and imagery to indicate what content is about.
Search engines like Google will weigh certain factors attached to your content to determine what it’s really about, and how it should be categorized within search results. As a simple example, you may notice some media sites naming posts things that are extremely specific, or mirror keyword searches. Naming a post “The Top 10 Budget Boots for Fall” is obviously far more descriptive than “My Fall Fave.” With the first title, Google knows exactly what your content is about; with the second, it takes a bit more work to determine.
You may hear about certain things causing you to “rank lower” or “rank higher” with Google. In recent years, Google has integrated best web practices as part of its secret SEO algorithm, meaning that your site can gain or lose SEO based on how you implement these practices. One common example many bloggers grappled with in fall 2017 is Google granting more “SEO juice” to sites whose URLs begin with https:// vs. http://. Obviously, this does not have anything to do with your post content itself, but this small detail can impact your rankings in search.
SEO is a huge topic, far more complex, nuanced, and evolving than we could possibly get into within a single Help Desk article. However, check out this article for a few more suggestions on how to optimize SEO for your blog. And, if you’re interested in learning more, simply Google SEO courses. There are many e-courses online, in-person seminars, and specialists who can help you maximize your SEO!