First thing first. SERP means Search Engine Results Page.
SERP refers to the results shown by a search engine in response to a given keyword or key phrase. In the field of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) it is extremely important to keep an eye on your SERPs. These pages tell you a lot about how well formed is your SEO strategy as well as it gives you some idea about how users may reach your website.
Example of an SERP
Look at the following SERP from Google for the key phrase “car insurance in new york”. I took this screenshot on June 2, 2012. Look at the results and see how they are stacked. Also consider for a moment; if you had made this search which of the results you’ll prefer to click.
How to See Your SERPs
Google’s Webmaster Tools facility tells you about your website’s position in the result for a particular keyword. You can create a complete Google SERP for your website by using the “site:” operator during search. For example:
This search on Google will show all the pages of TechWelkin listed in Google.
A Well Formed SERP
When you look for your SERP you should notice the following items:
- Title of your web page
- URL format
These three things are key to success. SEO folks mostly optimize these three things for a given website. Title is very important because this is the first thing that a searcher notices in the search results. In the above given screenshot, you can see that Google makes the used keywords bold in title and description. Therefore, your title and description must contain the keywords you want to target.
Once a searcher fixes her eyes on a title –she tends to look at the description. Description also contains highlighted keywords. If the description is useful and catchy –the searcher might decide to click on your link. Description is very important but it is oft neglected by the webmasters.
The URL should also contain keywords. Most searchers won’t look at the URL but it is very important for search engines. They give preference and higher placement to the results where keywords are also present in the URL.