Search Engine Optimization: It’s More Than Keywords


When speaking with clients and prospects about our web development services, the phrase “Search Engine Optimization”, or SEO, comes up faily quickly. Equally common is that the mention of Search Engine Optimizaton is usually followed by the individual asking if we put keywords into our websites. The short answer is yes, we do use keywords when building websites.  However, the reality is that there is far more to SEO then simple words and phrases.

The internet has changed drastically since first constructed, and coinciding with that evolution is a changing in how search engines rank and classify websites. We have all stumbled across older websites where every other sentence is a repetition of the same words or phrases. While the amount of unique content on a webpage may be only a few sentences, the page itself scrolls on for miles, repeating itself in annoying paragraphs reading as nothing more than: “We sell pizza. Hey, did you know we sell pizza? You can buy the pizza we sell. …Pizza.” Even more irritating is that the website then proceeds to repeat that same content across muliple pages. What could easily be constructed as one-page, highly informative website has been morphed into a monster, all for the sake of keywords.

Why, you ask?

Because at one time, simply packing your website full of keywords actually mattered quite a bit, and developers knew this. The worst website ever created could rank high in search engines by simply making sure it repeated the right words enough times. A win for the developer perhaps, but not for the consumer simply wanting to search for information.  Nor for the local business wanting to help that consumer.

What many individuals don’t realize however is that search engines have evolved. Keywords still play a role, but its now about quality, not quantity.  Search engines now ask questions such as:

  • “Is this website actually answering a person’s questions?”
  • “How easy is it to find information on the website?”
  • “Does it have a mobile-friendly design?”

If the answers are yes, then those sites now rank higher.

And as for the old method of “keyword, keyword, keyword,” that can now actually cause your website to rank much, much lower, because Search Engine Optimization has evolved to recognize that for what it is: spam.

Will it continue to change?

Yes, SEO is not static, and so Search Engine Optimization will continue to change overtime.  This is why it is important that your website change and evolve with it. If it has been a few years since you took a serious look at updating your website, or perhaps have never given serious thought to SEO, then click here to reach out to us today. We’re here to help you tell your unique story.

(For some extra reading, here is a recap on Search Engine Optimization changes from 2018, but be warned that it is not something you can classify as “lite reading”).