What is SEO, really?
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Good SEO on a good site means free traffic of likely buyers.
The goal of SEO is to make your site easy for people, and therefore search engines, to understand. It is about clear structure and good content. It is about value, too. The best pages offering unique valuable content are meant to rise to the top. There must be a reason that people visit and this reason must be satisfied.
SEO is about the customer, your site's visitors. Use it right and you will get high page rank. Insert specialized forms of SEO, like Rich Snippets, into your pages and they will show up in your meta descriptions. This will will increase how often your site is picked from the choices on the search engine return page. Deliver good content and increase how long the visitors are staying. Offer a good product and they will buy. Make it really great and they will share it on social media.
The first step is to get on the first or second page as a choice for your chosen keywords. There are a lot of things that are important for the search engines to rank your site high. The most basic consideration is being aware the bots do not speak all programming languages. They do not speak JAVA. Avoid Flash if you want to be offered on mobile devices. The best to use? Everything important about the structure and content of your site needs to be in HTML.
Having a clear vision of each page is necessary. Knowing what a page is about is the first step in setting the keywords. Keywords are the phrases put into the search engines that you want your pages to be associated with to drive traffic of likely buyers. Use Google Adwords keyword tool to help you pick keyword phrases that get traffic. Make your keywords clear on you page and stay on topic.
SEO is also being aware of and using analytic tools, such as Google Analytics. What phrases are getting people to your site? Are those phrases working? Are visitors buying things, clicking links, or just instantly bouncing away from your pages? What is SEO if not about the bottom line, ultimately?
What is SEO not?
SEO is not a magic bullet.
SEO is not something to use if you don't have a business plan.
It doesn't mean to optimize your site so the search engines give you the best ranking regardless of the content.
SEO does NOT mean you can create a site, get rank and sit back. Stale websites lose rank. Google announced it's "Freshness" requirement in November of 2011. They have brought it up a few times, really.
I'd love to discuss "what is SEO" and "what is not SEO" in more detail, with you personally. Call me.