It is important to step back approximately 25-30 years ago when the internet was created (History of the internet)). The world began to connect computers to each other and have a need to share information between each other. Company 'A' in California (selling grapes) and company 'B' in Virginia (producing wine) needed to share information. Now this information could be anything but for the most part it was text and pictures. So now imagine that the company 'A' had 1,000 electronic pages of information that company 'B' needed.
"...be very careful with anyone claiming they know how to get you to number one on Google search."
How would they find the "right" page? Well they could call California and describe what they wanted and the someone in California would say, "oh, you need this page----http://californiaA/redgrape/10.html". Virginia company would say, "thanks", hang up and type in that location and get the page. Now this would go on for each page and for each company that need that information. As the years moved on companies came and went, and the need for other companies to see that same information became more and more important. So this developed into a need to help companies and people share with each other what they had. Without a master "lookup" book (like a yellow pages) it became near impossible. So companies were created that would put all information about these pages in one spot and so the world of searching became a multi-billion dollar environment.
Through the years many companies have tried to create these master directories. There were AOL (America Online), Infoseek, Yahoo, Microsoft and Google just to name a few. In fact, at the time of this writing there are too many search engines to count. Some of them are specific purposes. For example, if you....
||Doesn't track or personalize searches
||Combines the results of top engines
|List Goes on...
There are some search engines that are still reviewed by humans but since there are over 30 trillion unique individual pages and more are added each day this work was been largely replaced by spiders. Spiders are little bits of code that move (crawl) through each page looking for nuggets of information (it doesn't hurt). This information can be text, pictures, audio, etc. They also look at the kinds of words used. All of this information is than run through a mathematical formula (aka. algorithm) with certain bits of information getting higher marks. The result of all this information determines when and where you appear on the search engines result sets. The idea is the higher the score the more relevant it must be. Through the years, search engines have "tweaked" these formulas to provide results that for the most part have been exactly what people are looking for, except one of them has done it better -- Google. In fact as of April 2016 the % of market share on searching is;
||% of Market
That is why most sites try to optimize for Google, Bing and Yahoo. (Remember each one of them has their own formula, so what is ranked higher to Bing may not be as high to Google and vice-versa. As you can imagine (SEO) Search Engine Optimization companies have popped up everywhere with claims to get you to the top of Google. First, be very careful with anyone claiming to be able to do this. The reason is simple...no one knows the math or algorithm that goes into this equations. They can take a good guess but the fact that no one knows is what allows the best to rise to the top. For example if I knew that if a search engine looked at words only and I wanted to be ranked high, I might use the word "best wine" every other sentence on my site. I might create a page and write something like this;
"Our company makes the best wine and our customer agree that we make the best wine. Call us to try some of our best wine to see if it truly is the best wine you have ever tasted."
Wow! this must really be important to someone looking for the best wine. Not really......in fact it might very well be the opposite. That is why Google might actually assign negative points to your site. There is a natural balance of word usage that Google assigns to your key words. I reiterate, no one knows for sure what that balance is. There is a general understanding that Google takes into account things like, Titles of pages, pictures that describe want you are showing, how long have you had your domain name, who long have you bought your domain name, how many other sites link to your site, how many people comment about your sites on their sites and the list goes on -with no one knowing the end. All of this is not meant for you to throw the towel in but for you to understand that SEO is important and can be confusing. James River Webs, understand the areas that go into search engine optimization and can help you. Give us a call (757) 871-8920 and we can actually do a site analysis and provide recommendations.
I will write about Google ads in an upcoming article....