I’ve written before about SEO being a “word game” to me and got quite a few questions from friends and followers. SEO or SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION is defined in Wiki-land as the process of improving volume and/or quality of traffic to a website. Now, if you’ve been following this blog, you know that I coach competitive swimming in my “spare” time. Let’s just say coaching doesn’t pay the bills. SEO does 🙂
I’ve decided to try to explain SEO via my coaching techniques. As a swim coach, I have come across all types of swimmers: those who can listen and pick things up immediately, those who have to try it a few times THEN they get what I want, and those who I have to explain and explain and explain it to them before they get it. That’s where the SEO comes in. For this post, we’ll call it swimmer engine optimization – ha!
If I were to say the exact same thing to every swimmer every time (assuming people use the EXACT same keyword for a topic), some kids would get the message and some wouldn’t. If I change up the words or verbiage (keyword application) that I am using – a higher percentage of swimmers would get the message (higher percentage of traffic to website) I am trying to deliver. In theory……..
My words to the swimmers are just like keywords in text to a website – they have to be varied. Kids don’t process words in exactly the same way – just like people don’t use exactly the same search words for a particular topic. For example: for freestyle (American Crawl to you non-swimmers) your hand entry should be immediately outside of the center line of the body. To our senior swimmers, they would get that statement. To my babies, they would just stare at me like zombies if I used that particular string of words. This is NO DIFFERENT than if you were searching for a company to design a website. What words would you use? Website Design? Site design? Website Development? Web Development? Web page design? I could do this for days – but I think you get the picture.
For my beginner swimmers, I describe hand placement in the water as a spoon. “Let’s put our spoon (while showing them an outstretched hand and arm) in the bowl and pull the scoop of ice cream through the bowl.” Now, if I say THAT to the seniors, we’d spend the next few minutes waiting for the laughter to die down so no one would drown.
People use different strategies to search for things on the internet, THUS the need for multiple keywords explaining exactly the same topic to boost traffic to your website. Just like I have to come up with quite a few ways to describe hand placement – which by the way is INCREDIBLY important in fast swimming. No time to waster putting your hand in wrong……..no time to waste in not having the correct keywords on your website.
For those swimmers – yes I’ve provided ice cream and a scoop for the visuals. For you senior swimmers that read this……..NO WAY am I bringing ice cream to practice!!!! Austin High School!