If you are trying to get your website noticed or are trying to drive more traffic to your site to increase sales, then you have likely already heard of SEO.

SEO stands for search engine optimization, which means making modifications to your website that will increase its ranking on a page of search results.  There are actually a couple different ways to go about search engine optimization, and those are referred to as on page and off page.

One of the most popular optimization techniques is to use keywords which you want to rank well on in the text throughout your site.  When those words are searched for the chances of your site being among the top of the results is much greater.  This method is an example an on page optimization.

Another on page factor that you can utilize to help increase awareness of your site is to use meta tags.  When creating your website, you can place meta tags into the site’s source code, which will not be seen by users and visitors to the site, but only by search engine bots.

In these meta tags, you can place any combination of words and phrases you want to be associated with your website.  Although these techniques are widely used and considered an acceptable lead generation tool, there are some methods that are looked down.  You should avoid using things like hidden links or text on the page that the search engine can read, but users can’t.  Also avoid keyword stuffing in the content on your site.  These practices are considered very deceptive.

When you are looking to use SEM (search engine marketing) to increase traffic to your site, there are things that affect the SEO that are not done directly on your website.  One of the off page things you can do to increase your lead generation is to put keywords in the anchor text on your hyperlinks.

When doing search engine optimization its critical to do your research and come up with a short list of targeted keywords to focus on so you can actually measure results.  In other words, don’t just come up with keywords and phrases off the top of your head, find words and phrases that people are actually searching for.

PPC (pay per click) ads are a great way to refine and test your list of keywords – PPC can provide fast results, but it will cost you.  We generally like to use PPC to see what keywords will provide results in generating leads for you.  This prevents wasted time spent optimizing for phrases that no one uses and have a low probability of bringing you traffic.  With a potentially unlimited number of phrases that can be searched, you should focus your time and efforts on key phrases that will pay off immediately.