Be Found by the Right Audience

What SEO Means

SEO is a very misunderstood term. Search Engine Optimization means many things to many people. For the purposes of this document, as well as any other Web Exordium project, the term refers to:

“The process of affecting the visibility of a web page in a search engine’s “natural” or un-paid (“organic”) search results.”

This process includes many factors from algorithmic evaluation, human interaction, traffic source differentiation, and more. In this document we will cover:

On The Page Ranking Factors

On The Page search ranking factors are those that are entirely within the publisher’s own control. What type of content do you publish? Are you providing important HTML clues that help search engines (and users) determine relevancy? How does your site architecture help or hinder search engines?

Off The Page Ranking Factors

Off The Page ranking factors are those that publishers do not directly control. Search engines use these because they learned early on that relying on publisher controlled signals alone didn’t always yield the best results. For instance, some publishers may try to make themselves seem more relevant than they are in reality.

Ranking Penalties

Make no mistake, search engines want people to perform SEO because it can help improve their search results. Search engines provide help in the form of guidelines, blog posts and videos to encourage specific SEO techniques. However, there are some techniques that search engines deem “spam” or “black hat”, which could result in your pages receiving a ranking penalty or, worse, being banned from the search engines entirely.


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