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What is Optimization and Why Do I Hear That My Site Needs It?

November 2, 2016

OptimizationYou may have gotten emails once or twice about how your website can be improved with the help of optimization. You may have also been told by these same emails that your site actually needs to be optimized in order for it to be profitable. What does optimization and profitability have to do with one another when it comes to your site? Does your site really need this so-called optimization?

Well, to tell you the truth, yes, your site does need to be optimized in order for it to be more profitable. Unless you are the only company online selling what you are selling, then you do need to have some optimization done on your website. Also called SEO, or search engine optimization, this step is one that many website owners don’t know about or are not informed of by their site developer since this is a step that optimization specialists take care of.

If your web developer is not SEO-savvy, or does not have anyone on their team who understands the importance of this part of your site’s development, you will probably need to talk to someone outside of your web dev team who knows what this is and what is needed for site optimization. This step is actually crucial to your site’s success, and as such, is often discussed and planned even before any work is started on a site.

Of course, since not all website developers know the ins and outs of optimization, this step usually comes after the site is up. The work that needs to be done in order to get a site totally up-to-scratch when it comes to search engine presence and relevance may include some reworking of some URLs, not to mention the addition of such optimization staples as title tags, meta descriptions, and alt tags. These terms may seem totally alien to many who encounter them for the first (or even second and third) time, but those who do optimization work can easily understand what these are and why these are necessary to your site.

How does a site that is already running get optimized? It first goes through what is called an SEO audit. Your site is checked for these factors that make it discoverable by search engines, and if it does not have any of these, you will get recommendations on what needs to be changed or added. Sometimes it will need a bit of reprogramming and tweaking by your web developers, if the URLs do not have the kind of features needed for proper optimization.

URL changes will also need to have redirects made in order for site visitors to find the right page after it has been tweaked. Content has to be fixed or updated to make it more discoverable. Images need to be tagged for these to be considered relevant to your site and your pages as well.

In the end, the work that needs to be done is usually dependent on what your optimizer finds out during the audit. The result of optimization is usually better search engine rankings and an increase in traffic, which in turn can mean an increase in revenue. After all, if you want people to buy from you, they have to find you first, and optimization can help make your site easier to find.

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