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To those of us who are not web savvy, it's a little creepy. As I understand it, search engines have these virtual spiders (robots) that crawl all over the Internet, making exhaustive notes of everything they find. Then, when you do a GOOGLE search for something, say, "Stately plump Buck Mulligan," the spiders remember all the places they encountered "Stately plump Buck Mulligan" and post a list of all the pages where they found it in their explorations. There are secret formulas by which they decide the order in which they list the pages.

In your site, you have code, HTML text, images, meta tags, and some other stuff. My friend Dan at Blueridge Solutions could give you the technical scoop on this. But as far as spiders go, they recognize HTML text and meta tags, but they don't recognize pictures (spiders hate art it seems). Meta Tags are tags, written into the source code, not visible on the interface of your site, that tell spiders what's important to you. Our meta tags, for example, include "Bank Branding." This helps you be attractive to spiders (like I want to be attractive to spiders) in a way that helps you when people search for companies like yours. There are specialists within the web design business, who do nothing but "Search Engine Optimization," (SEO) which is the art and science of attracting spiders.

Quick aside, I head that for the movie, Willard, they put peanut butter all over Ernest Borgnine, so he would be attractive to the rats, so they would look like they were eating him in the scene where the rats ate Earnest's character. Told you this was a creepy post. Anyhow, SEO is to Internet spiders as peanut butter is to movie rats.

Some people are very sensitive about their image and frequently GOOGLE their own brand. This is a pretty smart thing to do, actually. A couple of times, for example, I mentioned UMPQUA Bank, you know, the world's greatest bank-UMPQUA. Sure enough, within a couple of days, we got a bunch of hits from UMPQUA and others within their region. Hey UMPQUA, I mentioned you four times, I know I'll be seein' ya. Love ya' UMPQUA. Mean it. You're awesome.

Anyhow, SEO is great if you want to seat a position. But only if you're prepared to back up the expectations you're inviting. Gotta go.

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