An Intern’s Perspective on the Importance of SEO Today
As a marketing major at the University of Florida, I came into my summer internship at J.M. Field Marketing with some general knowledge in marketing. One area I had not yet been exposed to was SEO, or Search Engine Optimization. Within my first week at the company, I quickly learned about this technique. SEO “is the process of increasing the amount of visitors to a website by obtaining a high-ranking placement in the search results page of a search engine.”
For a company that wishes to increase its website’s page rank, Google’s page ranking system is typically focused on, as it is the number one search engine in the world. The algorithm Google uses to determine a website’s page rank unfortunately isn’t known since this is a proprietary algorithm. However, they have given companies a list of factors they can use to improve their search engine ranking. Google uses over 200 SEO factors to rank a page. This means that companies have many different avenues they can take to increase their website’s page rank. Below are several of Google’s highest ranking factors.
- Age of Domain: The Older the URL, the better
- Domain Hosting: The site should be hosted by a reputable hosting company
- Neighbors: It is harmful if other sites on the website’s server are spam
- URL Structure: The URL should be as clear and as simple as possible
- Content: The content should make sense to the reader and have key words throughout the page
- Internal Link Structure: It should be easy for those on the website to go to other pages on the site
As the Google SERP Click and Attention distribution ‘heat-map’ below displays, the higher a website’s page rank the higher the percentage of clicks on the website’s page. The website with the highest page rank below received over half the amount of clicks whereas the last website on the page received a measly 2.55% of clicks.
There are countless great companies around the world, but without the proper understanding of SEO, many of these companies go unnoticed because they pull up in the bottom of the search results page. If a company’s website is turning up on the 2nd page of a Google search, it is at a tremendous disadvantage compared to its competitors that have a higher page rank.
Months ago as I sat in my college apartment searching for marketing internships online, I had no idea the reason behind why the J.M. Field Marketing website came up in my top search results. Little did I know then that I would soon be learning and appreciating the technicality and effort behind how they surfaced at the top of my search, resulting in me finding this great internship online.