business seo tips guidesSearch Engine Optimization (SEO), e-commerce enthusiasts believe, is the fuel that drives digital marketing. Without it, your e-marketing efforts would come to a grinding halt.

On the other hand, however, are others who think that SEO is overrated. This group believes that although SEO is good, it’s not as important as it’s made out to look.

So, which is true? Is SEO critical to your digital presence or it just another candy in the box that you can do without?

To answer this question, you need to understand what SEO really is about. To get you started, here are five very important things about SEO that you need to know;

1. SEO basically means “fine-tuning” for search engines

As the name suggests, SEO is all about putting your website in the best shape so search engines can have an easier time crawling the site. Search engines rank websites by looking at certain signals such as keywords, number of pages, types of content, different kinds of traffic, and so on. SEO focuses on making it easy for the search bots to find these signals. Search engines such as Google take that “ease of crawling” into consideration when returning search results. The easier to crawl your site is, the more favorably you’ll be ranked.

2. There are two broad categories of SEO: on-page and off-page

On-page SEO encompasses all the activities that take place on the website, including key phrases, keywords, and tags. Another component of on-site SEO that is often overlooked is internal linking where you create hyperlinks tying together all the pages in your site. Put together; these components ensure that the website is accepted by both viewers and search engines. Off-page SEO, which primarily refers to external linking, is not as important but is still necessary if you want to rank highly. It helps search engines determine your perceived authority.

3. White-hat SEO is good

White-hat SEO refers to all the SEO practices that search engines encourage. They include keyword analysis, link building, backlinking, and creation of tags. Although it has no impact on ranking, if you use only white-hat techniques, search engines will have no problem with your site and will continue treating your site normally.

4. Black-hat SEO is bad

Black-hat SEO meanwhile refers to all the techniques that search engines discourage. They include things like keyword stuffing, buying links, buying traffic, and so forth. If found using these techniques, Google, for instance, can suspend, or even expel your site from their directory.

5. SEO largely hinges on original and fresh content

You need to regularly update your content for your SEO to remain relevant. It doesn’t matter how good the site might be today. If you don’t consistently add fresh content, you will lose your position in search engine results pretty fast. Additionally, the content has to be 100% original. One way to ensure this is by enlisting with a content writing service provider.

Of course, you need to also know that SEO requires blogging and networking (social and otherwise) to thrive. Don’t just end at the website.