April 13, 2019

What Does SEO Stand For?

We often hear the question, what does SEO stand for? The simple answer would be Search Engine Optimisation, but what does this really mean?

Often seen by many as a dark art, SEO is shrouded in mystery, with businesses often embarking on the SEO journey without ever really knowing what is going on behind the scenes.

The internet is a highly competitive, ever-changing landscape, with businesses constantly jostling for position within the SERPs (search engine results pages). The competition for the top spots is fierce, so how do companies vying for these positions gain an edge over their competitors? In most cases, they are using SEO. For years, SEOs have tried to understand how the search engines work and use this knowledge to gain an advantage for their clients. But as the engines became more sophisticated, the harder it has become to manipulate them.

Gone are the days of keyword stuffing to get results, modern SEO requires a more holistic approach, incorporating a range of channels, techniques and strategies to get to the top. But for companies who can get it right, no other channel delivers the same ROI. So the real answer to the question, what does SEO stand for, would be an investment in the future of your business.

Why Do Businesses Need SEO?

Your customers are searching for your services online and they are using a search engine to do so. You could have a beautifully designed website that you invested thousands in, but if your website isn’t ranking, you’re nowhere. Good SEO and a well crafted digital strategy can help improve your visibility in the organic search listings, putting your business in front of your audience and turning clicks into customers. Digital marketing is no longer an optional channel for business growth but a necessity and SEO is a key component in any digital marketing campaign. In short, if your competitors are using SEO, you need to as well.

Within SEO there are a wide variety of strategies that can be used to achieve your business goals. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to SEO. At Journeys in Digital, we carefully tailor a strategy that aligns with your own personal business goals, this could include anything from technical SEO to web design, through content marketing to social media channels. Search engine algorithms change on a daily basis, so you need an agile strategy that can adapt accordingly to remain effective. A good SEO strategist will monitor the success of their strategies through data analytics, enabling them to make effective data-driven decisions throughout the campaign.

Now we have answered the question, what does SEO stand for, we should take a closer look at the techniques used by SEOs as part of a wider digital marketing strategy.

Technical SEO

Before developing a digital marketing strategy, it is important to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your website. Technical SEO reveals where your website is performing well and highlights areas where improvements can be made to ensure your site is conforming to Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.

Content Marketing

Search engines are trying to deliver the most relevent results to match the searchers intent, so to stand the best chance of ranking for you chosen keywords, you need quality content. Content marketing starts with a content audit of your website, to identify areas that need improvement along with gaps and opportunities. SEOs take this information and along with keyword research, use it to improve current and create new content to match search queries and reach potential customers.


Often the most challenging part of a digital strategy, backlinks are a major ranking factor in the search engines and are essential to your online success. The key here is quality over quantity, backlinking techniques have been abused in recent years and the search engines are now wise to black-hat link building tactics designed to exploit algorithmic loopholes. Websites using these techniques are in real danger of acquiring a Google penalty, resulting in your website being wiped from the SERPs altogether. White-hat SEOs use great content to encourage sharing and target high-authority websites for backlinks.

Social Media Marketing

Social Media is changing the way the world communicates and is therefore a must for businesses looking to engage their customers and build brand awareness online. Social signals are now a ranking factor in the search engines and as a result, SEOs are harnessing the power of social media as part of their overall digital marketing efforts.

What Does SEO Stand For? An Investment in the Future of Your Business

While the answer to what does SEO stand for is simple, the application of SEO is far more complex. For the customer, the digital space is a vibrant mix of competing brand messages and choice. For businesses, it is a competitive arena where only a small few in any given market will get the spoils. A well planned SEO strategy gives businesses the opportunity to compete and stand out in this challenging space, to get in front of their customers and drive sales.

At Hint we help businesses reach their customers through SEO. If your digital marketing isn’t working, we can help. Get in touch to speak with a member of our team to see how SEO can help you reach your business goals.

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