If you are trying to figure out what is SEO and having a lot of questions about it then you have come to the right place! Because here, we’ve made this simple guide for you to help you understand SEO better.
The most common question we get from our clients here at Minds Metrick is SEO and how it works. Maybe you’re looking for reasons why you need SEO or why it is important. It might be a little intimidating for newly starting businesses especially when there’s so many different price range. But having a little SEO knowledge can help you understand and appreciate SEO.
You don’t always need an experienced in-house SEO associate to optimize and rank your website in the search engine. With a little research, you can improve your brand’s ranking here and there to grasp the idea of how your site can start ranking. Obviously, an expert would be able to create a specific strategy for your needs and be more efficient.
We will cover some basics of SEO and try to answer all the common questions so you can understand how it affects your business and what you need to do to keep your brand awareness.
What is SEO?
SEO, also known as, Search Engine Optimization, is optimizing websites so it can crawl, get indexed and get organic traffics from the search engine results page. SEO helps your website to rank on top by bringing certain changes to the website’s content & designs so that it attracts genuine visits. It also makes your site more pickable to the search engine.
How does SEO work?
Search engines are dedicated to providing the best service, relevancy to their users. This is where ranking your website on the top of the search results becomes a bit complicated. Every search engine gets thousands of results to choose from, from specific cities to individual neighborhood, to different countries and the time of the results. But it carefully picks the best results to put in front of the users. This is where SEO comes to play its part. It enhances the quality of your webpage, highlights the content that best matches the user intent, which shows relevancy to the search engine and forces it to bring your page to the users.
Search engines also rank websites depending on various facts like readability score, what and why users are typing in specific keyword and how your content relates to them, user-friendly, speed, etc. It compares & searches for a website that is relevant to the keyword, has a proper readability score and is easy to navigate rewarding it with a higher ranking in the results page. Thus SEO helps to keep your website up to the mark.
For example, suppose you have an article on your website regarding the best men shoes. To get your article to the right audience, you would need to make the article optimized so that the quality, relevancy, keyword consistency and the readability score remains just right to force the search engine to show it on the first page of the result page giving it exposure to the right audience.
But it’s not just keyword stuffing, any crappy SEO can copy and paste in the keywords. What search engines do is carefully go through each word, phrases, get a sense of the idea, examine other similar articles and see how well your article is compared to others, how well you perform compare to others and rank you. This is why it can take a while to rank, but with proper SEO, you can expedite the crawl.
This is how you bring proper organic traffic to your website by using SEO. Now, if anyone searches for the keyword Best Men Shoes, your content will come at the top.
So it is clear by now that the improvement of SEO will expand the visibility of your brand on the search engine. This will help you get more targeted organic traffic and reach & engage with more potential customers at a low marketing cost. The main motive of using SEO is to improve your business.
Facts that impact SEO
As you know what is SEO and the other basics, It’s time to look at some other facts that can affect your search engine ranking. As we know, Google, the biggest search engine of all, uses a secret algorithm to rank webpages in its search results. Though Google keeps changing the algorithm, we do have a good understanding of some facts that impact the search rankings. These include both on and off page facts which we will discuss below.
Content is one of the most important facts of SEO. An effective Content can both attract the search engines and help your brand make connections with the visitors at the same time.
The more relevant & quality contents you have on your site, the higher your website will end up on the search engine results page. Publish contents that can make people engage in it. Engaging contents are effective as they can connect with people’s emotions and pitch them to impulsive actions.
The secret behind creating contents which can intrigue both the search engines and website visitors is to bring variety and relevancy in the topics. The contents should also be well written and it should have the proper readability score. It should also maintain the keyword consistency and length of the content is also important. Keyword stuffing might flag your website which might eventually lead to demoting your website’s ranking.
Here are just a few types of contents you can focus on to help improve your search engine rankings:
- Blog posts and articles
- Social media content
- E-books and white papers
- How-To Guides and Tutorials
- Videos and audio recordings
- Infographics or other visual content
The other important thing to consider while creating content for your website is the proper usage of keywords and phrases. These keywords are words that a search engine user might type in while searching for answers to their questions or relevant products and services. When you create content where these keywords and phrases are included naturally, you improve your chances of ranking higher for these keywords on the search engine results page.
Yet another factor that can affect your content and your search engine ranking is the freshness of your content. Freshness mostly refers to the fact that how frequently new contents are published on the website. However, creating new content is not the only way to keep your content fresh and active. You can also freshen up your contents by updating them, rewriting them for making them more effective, or adding new information and statistics over time.
Though creating quality content might take time and resources, it is more likely to pay off in the end. Search engines love fresh content and the consumers need quality content to understand and connect with the brand or business. Start off by creating a few blog posts and work hard to build a following on social media. Once you have a group of loyal fans and followers, your brand can work to create different posts to attract and generate new leads.
The on-page SEO facts are the things that happen inside your website. These are the things you have complete control over. In other words, these are the things on which you can work on improving over time by following the rules of SEO. This isn’t just about the contents. This is about the whole buildup of the website.
Here are just a few of the on-page SEO facts that can help you improve your ranking:
The title tag on each page determines the search engines what the page is about. This should be in between 70 characters. It should include both your business name and the keyword.
The meta description on your website gives the search engines a little bit more detailed information about what each page is about. This is also used by your website visitors so that they can better understand the page and easily navigate through. The meta description should also have a relevant keyword.
Sub-headings not only make your content easier for visitors to read but also improves your readability score. You can use H1, H2, and H3 tags to organize your content properly and help search engines better understand what your content is about.
Building internal links inside a website is called hyperlinks. It is used to help the visitors roam inside the website easily. This way, the visitor gets to know more about the website. As an example, if you are writing a post about the value of a specific product, you can put a link to the product or service page in your blog post.
You want to be aware of link stuffing. You don’t want to over do them. Simply use your internal articles to explain the content. If there is no need for it, don’t stuff them.
Image Title and Alt Text
If you are using pictures on your website or within your blog post, then it would be better if you include your keyword or phrase in the image name and alt tag. This way, it will help the search engines better index your images, which may appear when the users do an image search for a certain keyword or phrase. You might also attach links to the picture.
The placement of the keywords is really important. It should be placed naturally so that it does not hamper the readability score. The keyword consistency should also be consisten throughout the title, meta description, headings, sentences, alt text images. Keyword consistency can become keyword stuffing. The most important part of this implementation is “value”. If it does not bring any value, don’t add them. Any more than that might lead Google and other search engines penalizing your page.
In addition, make sure that every content focuses on just one or two keywords. This will help you ensure that your content is specific and relevant. Using too many keywords in the same article might negatively impact your search engine optimization.
While website contents play vital roles in your search engine rankings, it’s important to check your site’s structure and buildup. You should always choose a website design that will make it easy for search engines to scan your pages and contents. Using hyperlinks between your pages and creating a site map can both help improve your site’s navigation and give your search engines a better understanding of your contents.
The other important thing you need to keep in mind is that your website has to be mobile friendly. Nowadays, people mostly do their research on mobile devices. Even they are more into online shopping. You need to make sure that these users have the best experience and can view, read, and navigate through your website from their mobile devices easily. It affects your SEO too.
Unlike on-page SEO, you don’t have any control over off page SEO. But it is a key factor to boost your website’s ranking. Though you don’t have any direct control over off-page SEO, you can still use some techniques which will help you pitch and tweak it and have it in your favor. (We will talk more about that later)
Here are a few of the different off-page SEO facts that can improve your search engine rankings:
Trust is an important fact for both the website and its visitors. This is how Google determines if your website is legitimate or not. It also makes visitors feel safe surfing through the website. The best way to improve a site’s trust is by building quality backlinks from sites that have proper authority.
The most popular way to build off-page SEO is through backlinks. You will have to be careful here as spamming websites with links is a quick and easy way to get your website banned from the search engines. Instead, take the time to build relationships with influencers who can create quality content and will link back to your website on their own articles.
Another important off-page SEO factor is social engagement proofs like likes, shares & comments. When it comes to boosting SEO, look for quality shares from influencers. The more quality and fresh content you publish, the more likely you are to get people to share your content through social media. This will drive more organic traffic to your website.
This is how you can use off-page SEO in your favor even if you don’t have the total control over it. Simply by building trust, making interesting and relevant content and backlinking will increase your chances of improving the Website’s ranking.
Black Hat SEO vs. White Hat SEO
There are two different approaches that businesses take for optimizing their websites.
Some businesses only use SEO for optimizing their websites quickly and making money in the short-term. The Black Hat SEO helps you do that. But we do not recommend this technique. The black hat SEO might get you on top of the search engine quickly, but it will put your website and business at risk. This technique will make the contents of your website look like spams which will be quite unreadable for your visitors. But some businesses will bend or break the rules just to improve their site rankings to make a quick buck.
Though you might think using this method might rank your site quickly than those that are optimized properly, you will also have to keep in mind that these methods will often lead your website to penalization or banning by search engines rather quickly. Overall, this get-rich-quick approach to SEO ruins the chance for the brand to make a sustainable business on the internet. Proper changes don’t come overnight. You have to keep trying.
On the other hand, White Hat SEO is an effective approach to optimizing your website for search engines and building a sustainable business online. The goal of this SEO is to produce the best content possible so that it is easy for the visitors to read and navigate through the website easily while also following the search engine’s rules for optimization.
It’s important to note that through black hat SEO tactics, the search engines will eventually figure out what you are doing and penalize your website. But with white hat SEO tactics, you will be able to build a sustainable online business that will bring in more organic traffic over time. This might sound like a lengthy process, but trust me, it’s worth the wait.
So by learning what is SEO and how it works, you can now work to bring changes to your website and improve your SEO skills to boost your rankings on the search engine results page. Remember, the most important thing is to make your content attractive, engaging and relevant to your targeted audience.
As I said before, search engine optimization takes time to show its magic. Be patient. Changes won’t come overnight. In fact, it may take months to enjoy the results of your hard work. However, following the white hat SEO rules, you will be able to bring in organic traffic to your website and keep your visitors engaged and build a long-term business around them.
Need help building your SEO? If having trouble with your search engine rankings, you can do a self SEO audit. Or it may be the time to call in an SEO company. You can check out our article to prepare you for what you need to know before you hire an SEO agency. Our talented team at Minds Metricks your SEO Agency Business Bay, Dubai will provide the best SEO services that will help you improve your search engine rankings and bring in more relevant and organic traffic to your website. Contact Us Today