I'm all for optimization. I think we could better our lives, our economy, our environment and our web sites with optimization.
I looked up "optimization" on Dictionary.com, which defines it as “the fact of optimizing; making the best of anything” and “the condition of being optimized.”
I'm trying to do my part living an optimized life. My husband and I built a home using a geothermal energy system, so we're optimizing our energy use for heating and air conditioning.
I bought a hybrid car and have been trying to alter my driving habits to further optimize my use of petroleum.
A friend of mine is very health conscious; she's optimized carbs pretty much right out of her diet.
In each of these instances, the act of optimizing results in the use of less of something in order to be more efficient or gain a better result.
But, in the field of search engine optimization, the act of optimizing actually requires the addition of some things (i.e. fresh, optimized content, optimized meta tags, quality incoming links) as well as less of some things (i.e. less-complicated site coding, clean navigation).
If your company has a web site, it's important to have it optimized; not doing so only ensures that your site will be difficult next to impossible to find on the search engines.
Unfortunately, unlike the optimization examples above, in search engine optimization, doing everything correctly usually helps, but won’t guarantee the exact desired end result for every web site every time.
If it did, we’d call it search engine nirvana.