The question was: What is SEO, really?
I understand your confusion. I believe you are seeing SEO only as something IT. You can’t be more wrong.
So let me take you on a journey. Imagine a fruit market 50 years ago. And let say you wanted to buy some apples. But not just any apples.
You want to find the best-tasting apples out there.
So you go to the market and instinctively you are drawn to the table with the best-looking apples – big, red juicy apples. Job done. You are happy.
Would you be able to find those apples if they were hidden under a bag of potatoes underneath somebody’s table? I don’t think so.
This is what SEO is. Search engines are our eyes in the digital world so we can find the best apples online. But in order to find them, they must be positioned online in such a way (search engine optimized) so our eyes – the search engines – can see them.
Whatever your product is you need SEO for the people to find you online. It’s called SEO – search engine optimization but in the real world, we are optimizing for the people.
Or in the words of David Amerland (as you’ve mentioned him earlier in our conversation),
“semantic search is the beginning of the convergence of traditional ‘online’ with ‘offline’ – the two will become one and the same, characterized by a different bandwidth and available functionality.”