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Oklahoma State University

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

What is SEO?

The goal of Search Engine Optimization is to get your web site close to the top of the list from a search engine, i. e. Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.  In a university environment, this translates to higher enrollment to your department, or more interest in your service program, more funding for research, or more members in your organization.  There are almost as many reasons for SEO as there are web sites.

How to Improve SEO

There are tedious procedures to choose keywords, build XML documents, and submit websites to the search engines, but search engines are beginning to change the way they operate.  The most important things to you can do to improve your rankings are to make sure your web site is easier for people*, not just search engines.  Good content writing that includes your keywords and all the steps you take to make your site more ADA compliant (accessible) will net as many points in the rankings as some of the more complicated methods.  There are plenty of web sites that teach how to use these SEO methods for free, e.g. The Beginners Guide to SEO.


Useful statistical information about your web site is called metrics.  Metrics help track the success of your SEO efforts, among other things.  Some free, simple tools for your web browser to make short work of checking your web site’s metrics can be found at (for Chrome), at (for Firefox), and at (for IE, Firefox, and Chrome).  The most popular metrics program (that can be used with Drupal) is probably Google Analytics**.  You can obtain a free account and excellent free training by going to

*A good, easy-reading guide for making your site more usable is "Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability" by Steve Krug.

**All departmental web pages within the College of Engineering, Architecture, and Technology have Google Analytics running on them.  If you are interested in Analytics reports about your site, contact Chelsea Robinson, Marketing Manager.