What is SEO and why do I need it?
Most people don’t understand what SEO (search engine optimization) stands for and why someone needs it for their website, how does it work and what are the benefits of SEO (search engine optimization) technique. Also, some of my clients don’t have a full understanding of what SEO (search engine optimization) is and how does it work. This can be a big issue because when it comes to the implementation of the SEO (search engine optimization) strategy some people become amazed, frustrated or start panicking because it turned out to be more complicated and technical than they thought initially. Moreover, the majority mistake SEO (search engine optimization) for spam or link building or think that it is not trustworthy at all. This is why I though that some information on why you need SEO and what it is, in general, might be helpful.
What is SEO
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is one of the most important strategies for driving organic traffic to your website. What SEO does is makes your website more visible and crawlable for search engines like Google, which helps to drive organic traffic to your website and in some cases even turn your leads into your loyal customers. If done right, SEO is an ultimate weapon for you to reach the first page of SERPs organically. It is very important because Googlenow processes over 40,000 search queries every second on average, which translates to over 3.5 billion searches per day and 1.2 trillion searches per year worldwide. Imagine how helpful it can be if people can find your website on the first page of SERPs while making searches with relevant keywords.
Before buying something people, as well as companies, initially, do a search on the Internet by typing keywords and getting the list of relevant websites in return. This is one of the most important parts of buyer’s journey. Most of these people are not checking the second page and usually type new relevant keywords if they haven’t found what they were searching for. This is why for most of these people your website won’t be reachable if it is on the second, third or the other pages of the SERPs. In case your competitors rank in the search engine results are better than yours, you will lose most of your potential leads.
How SEO Works
SEO (search engine optimization) is keyword oriented and there is no SEO technique without keywords. Also, choosing the right keywords depends on your competitor’s keywords as well. You don’t want to go too crazy with it, you want to choose keywords that have medium competition but people are still using them in the search. For example, if your website is advertising a bookstore in New Orleans you don’t want to use the keyword “The Best Bookstore” because this will be a high competition keyword, instead, you want to use keywords like “New Orleans bookstore” or “Bookstore in New Orleans” which despite being a medium competition keywords are strongly relevant to your website. Once you have chosen the right keywords the SEO process can be started.
Google’s algorithm for positioning websites in the search results is a secret for everyone except for Webmasters, they know what factors it is using to rank your website higher or lower in the search results. Another reason why SEO is so important is Google algorithm updates like Panda and Penguin designed to “destroy” websites which are using wrong SEO tactics and spam. Staying ahead of these updates means keeping your website always relevant and trustworthy. These cute animals are another reason why you want to keep track of these updates because the SEO ranking factors are changing time to time.
SEO consists of two important and co-depended parts: On-site and Off-site SEO. Onsite SEO improves your website structure, user experience and make it more crawlable and visible for the search engines. Each landing page of your website has to be optimized for the specific keywords. They say content is the king, indeed, the content of your website has to be high quality, understandable for humans, not stuffed with keywords and shareable. These are some basics of on-page SEO that make your website rank better in SERPs:
The more unique, not stuffed with keywords, readable and relevant to your website niche content you have the higher your website will be ranked in the search engine results. Also, it is important to have content that will be shareable in social media. The content of your website can vary from written texts to videos, infographics and etc. Also, your website has to be updated as often as it is possible with the relevant and high-quality content in order not to lose the already earned visibility.
Webmasters make sure that all pages of your website have proper URLs with the title of the page and keywords. Also, it is important to have SEO-friendly URL structure on your website.
Title Tags and Meta Descriptions
When links to your website show up in the search engine results they contain title tag and meta description of the relevant page of your website that contains brief information about your website. Title tag and meta descriptions do not influence on your website rankings directly but they influence people’s choice on what link to click.
It is obvious that every website has images. Every image, in its turn, has to have an alt text which are keywords relevant to the text and images on the page. Commonly, people ignore this important ranking factor the most.
Off-site or off-page SEO is the strategy you implement outside of your website to impact your rankings within search engine results pages (SERPs). In other words, all kind of content published on your website with the link back to your website or even without can refer to off-site SEO. In recent years on-site SEO is becoming more important but content outside of your website still has a huge impact on your website’s rank. If your website has links from high-quality trustworthy domains, which are relevant to your website’s niche, it will be a signal to the search engines that your website can be ranked higher which means the better position in SERPs.
Commonly, this is where different link building strategies come to help. There are lots of controversy regarding this SEO tactic but, in general, link building can be helpful not only for better rankings, trustworthiness, relevance but also for sharing your content and making it available for more people. Google representatives always warn business owners to use social media as primary or only link building tactic but there are multiple ways to have high-quality off-site content with links back to your website which SEO specialists can offer.
This is only the brief description of what SEO stands for and why you need it for your website. As you can see, if done correctly, with the right SEO tactics you can increase the visibility of your website and make it more relevant to your chosen keywords. Moreover, judging by SEO reports specialists send you each month, you can see the results of their work and progress or decrease in your website rankings with the chosen keywords. Meanwhile, you have to be patient with SEO. As you can see, nowadays, when there are billions of websites your website needs to be SEO optimized and up to date in order to stand out, especially if your business depends on it.