The term search engine optimization actually dates back to a time before Google, which although many people may not remember was not always around, having been invented in university dorm room. Although, the rise to prominence of both could easily be connected; Google was one of the first search engines to pay such close attention to back linking, which in turn is one of the driving factors behind good search engine optimization.
When the internet began to gain popularity, it was realised that there was a need to create a ranking system for websites. This became more apparent when it was realised that people were searching for sites by using general terms or words relating to the site rather than a specific company name.
The birth of search engine optimization was marked by the advent of search engines banning ‘spamming’ or keyword stuffing. By forcing companies to not just fill meaningless pages with relative keywords, but find clever ways to work it into the text and create links with similar like-minded websites search engine optimization became the force that it is today.
While today search engine optimization is regarded as the guideline for success with regards to the website of any business, (and don’t forget in the modern world website success is linked to an increased profit) it was originally set up as more of a police force. A way of stopping people cheating their way to the top, keywords were forced to be placed in view and in a manner that makes sense, a normal ratio compared to the remaining text of the site, and links were graded on a points system with links to likewise and popular sites through a relative keyword are rewarded while people who purchase links or use unrelated keywords are punished.
The creation of programs known colloquially as spiders was another step in the evolution of search engine optimization as they travel the web, reading web pages deciphering and uncovering any hidden texts that may break the ‘laws’ being laid down by the search engines. These spiders store all the information and any offending sites would be recorded and subsequently removed from the listings all together. Once something as fast acting as the spiders can along, people began to invest more in their search engine optimization, keen to either gain top ranking while the cheaters were weeded out, or to change their tactics in an effort to earn their number one spot.
While search engine optimization rose to power by acting as the Internet doorman, not either barring entry or ejecting anybody who tries to cheat system, it has had to continually evolve to match the rapidly growing field that is the world wide web, and it may have a glorious past, one think is known for certain. Search engine optimization has not yet reached its prime and has a much more important role to play in the way websites are hosted, run and controlled.