You’ve heard of SEO, now what exactly does it mean? How does it work? Let’s dive down and find out.

importance of seo-seo- acronym seo

You have likely stumbled on the acronym SEO when looking for marketing strategies for your company or small business. In a digital world, businesses must understand what SEO is and why it’s essential to implement strategies to drive traffic to your online offerings. 

Let’s demystify the acronym SEO. It stands for Search Engine Optimization, a concept that, despite its name, is not as complex as it may initially appear. It’s a combination of several online elements that, when harnessed effectively, can significantly enhance your company’s digital visibility in the vast digital world. 

Consider this scenario: a business named Michael’s Motors, a used car dealership, neglects to use SEO strategies. Mary, a potential customer, is searching for a used vehicle in the general area of Michael’s Motors. When she uses platforms like Google, Bing or Yahoo, Michael’s Motors is the fifth search result. In contrast, John’s Motors, just down the street, has invested in SEO through companies like Ward Media Services. John’s Motors is the first hit on Mary’s search for used cars. Mary chose John’s Motors as it appeared first in the search. Now John’s has the advantage because Mary started her search there. We will be referring to this example throughout the article. 

What elements enable SEO to get the most out of what’s put into it?


In the past, keywords were one of the only ways to advance SEO goals. SEO has and will constantly be evolving, but even if keywords aren’t the “be-all-end-all,” it’s still imperative to include them. Circling back to Mary and her search for a used car, the keywords on John’s website worked to push their website to the top. Digital Marketing professionals will help curate a list of highly-searched words with lower competition. There are three main categories of keywords (short-tail, like “used cars,” long-tail, such as “used Honda vehicles,” and finally, local keywords, such as “used cars in Philadelphia”). 

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) 

Throwing another acronym into the mix, SEM is an off-website strategy where a business utilizes social media marketing, Google Adsense or other ad platforms to drive traffic. This is one of the main ways a company can get its word out to consumers. A quick Google search will produce hits with notes stating “Sponsored” or “Ad” next to them. Those companies are spending money to shine the spotlight on their business. Social media consumers see this on their feeds or “for you pages.” 


Content on a website or social media is typically the most crucial traffic driver in the SEO toolbox. Content like videos or blog entries on a website or social media increases engagement. Returning to the John’s Motors examples, the folks over there post walkaround videos of their

vehicles on Facebook and market that content. Consumers who see these videos can now physically see a car’s cosmetic condition while perusing social media. Since they specialize in vehicle sales, they also produce a blog outlining best practices in maintaining a vehicle on their website. This blog uses keywords in the title, so if a consumer searches “How to get road salt off your undercarriage,” their website pops up with their post. 

In Closing 

What is beautiful about SEO is that it does all the heavy lifting for you. Making sure that elements are utilized will help drive traffic. Being in the digital spotlight in today’s digital world is essential if businesses want to thrive. Entirely relying on word-of-mouth marketing is no longer viable in our connected era. When consumers search for products online, they want results in front of them fast. At Michael’s Motors, back in our example, a consumer might not even realize they exist because John’s Motors is lightyears ahead in their digital marketing strategy.

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