If the 20th century was the age of the car, the aeroplane and the television, then it's probably fair to say that the 21st century – so far, at least – is the age of the Internet.
The World Wide Web was well underway by the turn of this century, but in recent times the Internet has really started to achieve true ubiquity. Whether it's at work, at home, in coffee shops or even on the move, people are now able to surf the cyber highway where they may be. And for businesses, this means they can no longer afford to marginalize their online operations; given that so many people's first port of call when shopping for anything these days is to open up Google on their laptops, desks or Internet-enabled mobile phones and search for the best deal they can find.
However, with such a varied range of websites now on the World Wide Web, it can be easy to get lost in the deluge of information in cyberspace. But with an intelligent approach it is possible for an organization to stand out from the crowd and ensure that their success is long-lasting.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has been a key strategy for many businesses in the age of the Internet and essentially is the art of helping a company's website rank highly for certain pre-defined keyword searches.
First of all, there is the paid approach, which involves paying money to the search engine provider for a 'sponsored link' in the search results page. Normally, a set fee is charged each time a potential customer clicks on the link, which is why it's come to be known as 'pay-per-click' (PPC). However, this is not necessarily the most cost-effective technique to optimize online operations.
An organic approach is another effective way of ranking highly in search engine results pages. Essentially, this involves carefully crafting the text that appears on the website, so that it includes as many permutations as possible of the keywords that online consumers use when shopping for a product or service.
Part of the SEO process also understands gain link-backs from relevant external websites. This may involve generating content for blog owners in return for them providing a link back to the company's website. Or better still, it would be ideal to receive a link back from a well respected local or national newspaper as part of a broader PR drive that includes a full feature on the business in question.
But before all this, it's important to choose a good domain name for the website, one that is relevant to the products and services on offer. The domain name registration often comes as part of an overall web hosting [http://www.btbroadbandoffice.com/domains-and-web-hosting/web-hosting] package and can cost as little as a few pounds a month; and considering the potential benefits a website can bring to a business, it really will be money well-spent.