Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a marketing discipline focused on growing a website’s visibility in search engine results. By learning more about SEO, it’s easier to improve a website’s search rankings and help drive traffic.

Just as important as it is to understand digital trends, it’s important that media professionals understand SEO and how to use it to improve their website reach.

To understand SEO, know the anatomy of SEO:

Search queries:

Words that users type into the search box.

Search engines:

Google, Bing, Yahoo — these search engines organise answers to search queries based on relevance and popularity.

The more people visit a site, the more valuable or relevant it is, and so search engines place the site link higher in search rankings.

You want to get to the top of the page in regards to search results. How often do you go to the second page, let along scroll past the top four results? Right. It also instills trust in consumers that your site is relevant, worthy and has relative importance to their inquiry.


These are the building blocks of a search. They’re the main words that relate to a page’s content and will help search engines find the relevant information from the site.

Alt text:

Type in the alt text to give search engines a description of the visual content on a website page. This will give a search engine more keywords to hang on to and increase the website ranking in searches.

Most people just ignore doing this, but it’s important to give search engines more things to hook onto for your site.


Provide links throughout your pages to help with navigation and make the site more visible to the search engine.

Linking to another page on your website helps navigate your site, but linking to other websites that aren’t your own helps your website get found easier as well.

Title tags:

These are the bold, blue links people click on to go from their Google search to an actual website. It’s important to keep the title tag an accurate, concise description of a page’s content.

Social sharing:

Although it’s not exactly through search engines, the more a page is shared on social media platforms, the more a search engine can see that a link to the site was shared. This signals to the search engine that the site is increasingly relevant and popular.

Now that you know the basic anatomy of SEO, you should learn how to measure the success of a website. The best way to do this is measure the site’s analytics and track where site traffic is coming from.

  • Direct traffic: when people type the URL to the website
  • Referral traffic: separate websites provide links across the internet or in email or branding campaign links.
  • Search traffic: when people find a website based on search engines

By knowing where website traffic comes from, a media professional can see where the site must improve and increase audience reach.

How important is understanding SEO to you as a media professional? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

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