SEO, Search Engine Optimisation, is a method for improving the relevance of information in web pages returned by keyword searches performed on search engines. It is also evolving to become a way of highlighting the subject and relevance of any written text.
Learning SEO was one of the most useful web skills that I have acquired over the last ten years of developing web sites because it makes you think about the written content of each web page rather than just the structure and layout. You are not thinking about how the information will be presented but how you can better target the information at the people that might find it the most useful.
For me SEO didn't stop at web sites. When looking for contract work I learned from a friend in the recruitment industry that recruitment firms perform keyword searches on their candidate databases in order to match CVs to contract roles. So as an experiment I applied the SEO techniques I had learned onto my CV and within a few days I was attending interviews and secured a contract within a week.
For me SEO has become part of the creative process, whether I am writing articles for web sites or print media, producing PDF white papers or eBooks, or just writing a user guide, I apply SEO to the text so that it is better targetted to the people most likely to be looking for it.
In this day and age just about everything written down ends up in a digital format somewhere. Whether it is online or in a searchable database, you can help make it clear what your text is about by applying the techniques of SEO.
Learn the techniques of SEO for free by downloading a copy of the SEO Guide.
Article date: 18th January 2011