A few weeks ago, I was reading Jon Coleman’s blog post on how we as content creators are phoning it in for the most part and can do better. In the article, Jon references a post by Richard Falconer about the overuse of How SEO is like [insert something almost completely random] type posts. I couldn’t agree more. These passages are weak at best and leave the reader with very little actual takeaway information. The only real benefit is to the writer. And every good SEO should be focused on making the Internet better, not just adding more trash to the pile.

However, I believe this post is different. This is not just filler, this is the real stuff. So grab a pen and paper or save this to your Evernote account because here comes some actual information.

SEO Analogy

I have been using this analogy for years in meetings, interviews, and bars. I have found it is the easiest way to explain SEO and people seem to understand and relate quite quickly. In fact, the more I use it, the more fitting it seems to get.

To me, Search Engine Optimization is like selling a house. Picture your website as a house. When you hire an SEO company, the first thing they do is come in and do on page optimization. Just like a realtor would come in and make sure that you don’t have a fridge on your front lawn and your paint is fresh and inviting, SEOs make sure that your title tags and meta descriptions are filled and optimized. We improve user experience by simplifying navigation and making buttons easy to read and fun to push. And a site or house without a solid foundation and good structure won’t last very long. The off page optimization (linkbuilding, social media, etc) is what realtors do to attract smiling faces to the open house. We want to get your house clean and put some cookies in the oven and then we bring a lot of people through your front door. And hopefully, we get a lot of offers.

Recently, I realized there is another aspect to this; keywords. We all know that you can build the prettiest, flashiest, most everythingest website (house) but it’s time wasted unless you get someone to see it. Targeting the right keywords is the keystone in any SEO campaign. If you are #1 for a keyword that no one searches for or the wrong people search for, you aren’t  going to get conversions. For this reason, keywords are the location, location, location motto of the real estate business.

I’m sure I will think of more of these in the future. Do you have any? What is your favorite SEO analogy?