Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO for short, is the process of making your website come out in front on search terms relevant to it. It was something I had not really considered, as prior to my expedition into the web I had been of the opinion that Google would automatically select the site that I most needed, and place it on the front page, presumably acquiring this information by means of invasive telepathy. I had just never thought about how Google actually knew what I was looking for.
Having once slipped into the murky waters of SEO, which is ominously populated by “crawlers” and “googlebots”, I found that Google webmaster was more than happy to share much of this information with me. It confidently informed me that the most important word on the blog was Jabberwocky, which is reasonable, mysteriously followed by the word “step”. I’m concerned that discussing this will only make the problem worse, as next time the crawlers (which in my imagination look like something out of the Matrix) sift through they will find yet another instance of that word, but true to form, asking Google to search for “Jabberwocky step” will yield a soliloquy post in the top three.
The front page of google is big business, and SEO companies appear to allow you to invest near infinite amounts to acquire that sacred top spot. Again, something that had previously never occurred to me – my assumption was that anything after page 2 was simply not worth my while. Now, with a search for “Jabberwocky” ranking us a solid 350th (give or take), my opinions are somewhat altered.
What appeals to me most about the sport, though, is that it’s really not about the single word searches. What makes an internet search truly great is the things you can find when you are not even expecting them. An image search for deep brunswick green coach paint will provide you with a rather fetching shot of the Beast being given his new coat. If you hunt for “Leamington Spa Panic Beast” then the twitter feed disconcertingly pops up on page two. As if to counteract this rather flaky search term “doing everything at once” will send you straight to us, albeit to my post from a few weeks back about having limited success with the subject matter. My favourite by far though has to go to one actually used to navigate here on two separate occasions: “the great green beasts are copulating”. Not only is this utterly marvellous imagery, it is a testament to search optimisation that a search for “the great green beasts” on it’s own gives you nothing for pages on end. Google, it would appear, knows something about the oversized VW in our driveway I can only guess at…