Everything in today’s world has come down to the search engines. Whatever we are looking for we prefer to switch on our computer or mobile phone and quickly look it up at one of the search engines. It is one of the most important things to optimize your business website in accordance to the search engines so that anyone looking up for you can easily find you. It’s a fact that neither you nor I go past the first page of search engine result page (SERP, it is the page on which all the results of a search are displayed) whenever we are looking something on the internet. So to make a business easily accessible to the customers one has to be aligned with the way search engines read your page and not only from a customers’ perspective; because if a search engine doesn't bring it in front of the user, there is no way user is ever going to find it.
But there is more to it than just optimizing your website according to the criteria of search engines. The most popular search engine Google has been changing its policies from time to time whenever it realizes that most of the websites rather than delivering quality content are focusing on just optimizing their sites according to its terms and conditions that Google has laid down. Whenever these search engines see a loop hole which bloggers or website owners are exploiting, they change their policies which have lead to each new website giving high quality and original content. This is the most important reason why a person running a food chain or an educational institute or any other business apart from online promotions needs to engage a team of professionals, either in-house or outsourced, who can stay in touch with the changing policies of the search engines and keep the website updated accordingly. Trying to handle this yourself is not suggested, as one has to concentrate on main line of business and SEO alone takes at least 3-6 months to show results depending on the nature of business and completion in that particular line. Most of the optimization that needs to be done is according to Google as it is the most used search engine worldwide.
In 2013, 68.10% of the total searches were made by Google alone, this constitutes to more than 2/3 of all searches, and this is when Google comes on #5 in China, the most populated country in the world, with only 2% search share. The main reason for this is that most of the features of Google are still banned in China. So unless you want to promote your business in China you only need to worry about optimizing your website according to the Google policies.
Apart from this,
Baidu being primary in China has 18.84% share percentage globally
Yahoo has a Search share of 6.40%
Bing was used 5.59%
0.28% of searches in 2013 were made by AOL
Ask shared 0.16% of the whole searches
And a mere 0.63% was shared by all other search engines.
So if you want to target customers specifically in China, then guidelines of Baidu should be kept in mind to optimize the website, but if your target is rest of the world Google guidelines is your Bible to optimization.