I've been about the business of trying to create my site, and have been doing a lot of research here and other places about aesthetics, funtionality, etc., but one thing I just don't get is search engine optimization. I understand driving traffic to the site is key, but why is SEO so important to doing that? When I go to a search engine to look for something, I'm not going to go past the first few pages, because most of the time what I'm trying to find will be on those pages. There are so many different people and companies selling shirts and other clothing online, even if you get ranked pretty high, it seems that most people still won't find your site through a search engine. It would seem to me that link exchanges with related sites and things like that would be a better place to spend your time, rather than making your site so search engine friendly. I could be all wrong (and probably am). I've never created a site before. Could someone please explain the way SEO works and why it is so important?