It seems everywhere I look now, someone is selling some kind of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) or SEM (Search Engine Marketing) service. I liken it to what credit card processing was a few years ago- an easy way to make some quick money.
The term SEO is so often used in my daily life that I sometimes forget that it hasn’t exactly permeated the vernacular. Basically SEO serves to increase a site’s ranking for certain keywords in search engines (like Google and Yahoo.) While SEO focuses on organic or free listings, SEM focuses on paid (like pay per click) ads.
SEO is a complicated businesses that changes by the hour. However, you don’t necessarily have to spend a lot of money to do well in Google. Some keywords are tougher than others.
One of the most important things you can to do improve your site rankings is to work on building quality backlinks (inks to your site from another site.) Each backlink serves as a “vote” for your site in the eyes of the search engines.
Want to see how many sites link back to yours? There are lots of free backlink checker tools online like this one.