It’s a very hot term, increasingly thrown around amid other buzzwords like thought leader and target. And despite its popularity, SEO, or search engine optimization, is still a term not everyone understands.

As complicated (perhaps even daunting) as it may sound, SEO is actually a very simple principle.

What is it?

Let’s say you own a small accounting firm in Toronto. A potential customer searching for your specific services would type something like, “accounting services Toronto” into a search engine like Google. That set of words comprises what’s referred to as your keywords (another term you may hear a lot of).

Incorporating these keywords into your company’s web content (landing pages, blog posts, press releases, etc.) helps you rank higher on search engine results based on their frequency of use. Search engine algorithms take care of all that, thus optimizing your results. So there you have it: search engine optimization.

How do you use it?

With a bit of research, you can know what keywords are being used most frequently to search for you. Once these keywords are at your disposal, you can start incorporating them into your web content. Don’t overdo it though. Nothing is good in excess. Overusing your keywords is very obvious in writing. When you’re writing about accounting services in Toronto, it becomes clear to the reader that the services you offer are being overshadowed by your keyword stuffing. So use them sparingly, and in such a way that reads fluidly and naturally. If the fact that your business is located in Toronto isn’t imperative to the said point but you use it anyway, you sound like you’re trying too hard. And in that case, you are.

Where do you incorporate it?

As mentioned, SEO works its magic in any of your company’s online content; in any way you appear online. Your company website is the obvious frontrunner. Followed by (in no particular order) articles, blog posts, press releases, white papers and social media posts. By putting a little extra attention into the words you use, you can increase your search rank and maybe even get more people to your website. All the more reason to make sure it’s worth reading.