Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Your constantly-updated definition of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and collection of topical content and literature
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What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the visibility of a website or webpage on a search engine results page (SERP) so as to make a company’s website more discoverable (i.e., on the first page/s), thereby driving traffic and sales. Tedious, involving technical and business decisions, and not guaranteeing results—it nonetheless provides lasting benefits.

SEO often involves the concerted effort of multiple departments within an organization, including the design, marketing, and content production teams. While some SEO work entails business analysis (e.g., comparing one’s content with competitors’), a sizeable part depends on the ranking algorithms of various search engines, which may change with time. Nevertheless, a rule of thumb is that websites and webpages with higher-quality content, more external referral links, and more user engagement will rank higher on an SERP.

The SEO process includes six general phases:

  1. Research, including business research, competitor analysis, current state assessment, and keyword searching
  2. Planning and strategy, including decisions on how to handle content, build links to the website, manage social media presence and technical implementation strategies
  3. Implementation, where optimization decisions on a site’s webpages and the website as a whole are executed
  4. Monitoring, where the activity of web spiders, traffic, search engine rankings, and other metrics are observed for producing reports on which assessment will be performed
  5. Assessment, involving checking the summarized effects of the strategy (and its implementation) against the SEO process’s stated targets
  6. Maintenance, where both minor or major problems with the website’s operation are handled as they arise (e.g., new content that needs optimization according to the strategy)

The SEO process targets mostly organic links and search engine result placement; still, it is often complemented by more aggressive measures (e.g., paid search ads) and is often part of traditional marketing campaigns.

Literature on Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Here’s the entire ֱ literature on Search Engine Optimization (SEO) by the Interaction Design Foundation, collated in one place:

Learn more about Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Take a deep dive into Search Engine Optimization (SEO) with our course Psychology of E-Commerce: How to Sell Online .

“Customer engagement is the direct route to every important business objective. It’s the pathway to everything good that a business could want.”

— Customer Experience expert Micah Solomon in Forbes

Online competition is fiercer than ever—and if you want to create a website that outperforms industry benchmarks in a big way, it’s vital that you know how to utilize your design skills to keep users engaged. The more engaged users are, the more likely they are to turn into paying customers—people who will buy your products and services time and time again, remain loyal, and ultimately become ambassadors for your brand both on- and offline.

Executing e-commerce successfully isn't easy: 69% of users abandon their shopping carts before checking out, according to Baymard Institute, a UK-based web usability research organization. That’s quite scary; what about the good news? Well, Baymard also found that many of the problems with e-commerce are solvable with changes to design.

There are many factors in designing great e-commerce experiences. You must know how to capture someone’s attention and present your goods and services in the optimal way. If you want customers who are committed, you’ll have to tell engaging stories and know how to build a long-term relationship.

In order to do all that, you will need to acquire and apply knowledge in human psychology. If you understand how your customers think, you can design for their needs. This course is based on tried and tested psychological techniques that bring together content and design so as to deliver hands-on advice for how to improve your web design and increase your customer engagement.

All Literature

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