SEO stands for ‘Search Engine Optimisation‘. Put simply, SEO refers to the process of improving your site’s organic traffic and ranking on search engines such as google. In order to perfect the art of SEO, one must persuade search engines to recommend your content to their users as the best solution to a problem. For example, when someone types in ‘Brownies recipe’, search engines will put all its energy into delivering the best recipe out there containing the best content. So, you need to make sure you’re filling your websites with the best possible content. Perfecting your SEO skills will lead to higher traffic to your site organically, meaning you wont have to pay for your page to be placed where it is by search engines. In this series of Marketing 101 blogs, we’ll explain the basics of key aspects of marketing and advertising. So, let’s get into the basics of SEO.
How does SEO work?
There are two key aspects at play when considering SEO. Firstly, the world wide web, in which articles and websites are placed. Secondly, engine bots that create an index. To think of it simply, imagine the world wide web is just that – a web. Engine bots in this scenario are spiders then, crawling through the web and dictating which sites should appear where on the search engine results page. If your page answers customer queries well by the bots standards, your page will be placed high up on the search engine results page. This allows you to get ‘free’ traffic to your site.
How do I improve my SEO?
How can you quickly improve your SEO then? Is it simply about creating good content? The short answer is no. There is no quick and easy way to boost your SEO. It will take time, effort and skill. However, there is a recipe for getting better SEO and good quality content is key in this process. I’ll go into more detail about the importance of good quality content next, and then I shall go into more detail about the other ingredients for SEO.
Create Quality Content
Back in the day, writing quality content that focused on answering questions well and with style was not the norm. Instead, articles stuffed with keywords ruled the ranks of Search engines. Now this isn’t to say that keywords aren’t important, quite the opposite actually. Keywords are a key ingredient in the recipe of creating great SEO, however, style and quality must take priority. Choice keywords should be sprinkled into you content, so that the skill of writing is still clearly present. What this means is that where quality content was once rare, it’s now the standard. So, hone this skill and learn how to write content that is not only engaging and well-written, but answer a question your customers want to know. If you’re reading this right now, my guess is that you want to know what SEO is. Me answering that question in the best possible way is what this article is all about. Adding key words and HTML is then making sure that answer gets to the right people.
Here are my best tips for creating the kind of content that readers love and search engines favour:
Understand user intent: You need to know what your reader wants to learn when they land on your page.
Develop a customer avatar: You also need to know who your reader is, what they like, what they dislike, and why they’re there.
Break up the text: People have short attention spans, write accordingly. Short sentences. Engaging language. Images and plenty of headings.
Make it actionable: There’s nothing worse than reading a piece of content and not getting everything you need to accomplish something. Your content should be thorough, but it also needs to answer the question, “What now?” Will the reader have everything they need when they finish your article?
2. Do Your Research: Keywords
Successful SEO includes constant keyword research to keep content as relevant as it was when it was first posted. A common misconception is that keyword research is a one and done task. In reality, there is a lot more to it than that, including the kind of key words you choose. The two main things to think about when choosing keywords are: the intent of a word and how competitive that words is.
For example, the keyword ‘free’ is incredibly popular. People love free stuff and will often go looking for it online. If you decide to use this keyword in your content looking for higher traffic, you’ll find it. However, if your content is promoting your paid service, don’t expect any kind of conversion.
This is because people who search ‘free’ have the intent of finding a free service. They do not want to use your paid service and will not buy it. Instead, you want to choose key words that match your potential customer’s intent. These are words that your customers will actually type in to find your service, so they will be more likely to find your page when asking a specific question.
Competition is also incredibly important to think about when doing keyword research. It is always tempting to choose keywords with the highest search volume. You may justify this by saying ‘well, this is obviously what people are looking for’. However, Search engines also think this way and so, will choose content they know is of high quality. As a new creator, you cannot expect to overtake pages that have been a highly searched option for months or years. Search engines have chosen these pages to rank that high for a reason: they answer the query in the best way possible. It will then take years of work from your side to compete against these pages. Instead of competing with these big searches, choose your niche and stick to ranking in specifics. You can always go for those high ranks in broad search terms in a few years when you are established as a good source of information to Search Engines.
Your site’s HTML is also an important piece in the SEO puzzle. Without optimised tags, headers and descriptions, Search Engines will have a hard time knowing what your content is about. This will prevent your content from ranking, even if you have the quality and style down. Don’t be put off by this though, you don’t need an extensive background in code to understand how to improve your HTML. Here’s what you should focus on to start with:
Title Tags: title tags are displayed in the tab at the top of your browser and are what people see when your page shows up in a browser. Use this section wisely by choosing keywords and make your title enticing to click.
Meta Description: the meta description is the text that shows under your title tag on search engines. This gives your audience a taste of what your page includes. Keep this under 160 characters and make sure it looks intriguing, including keywords.
Alt Text: Alt text describes an image in your article for people who are visually impaired. Make sure you properly break down what the image is with key words included.
Subheadings: This is the title of your article and appears at the top of the page. Subheadings tell Search Engines what the content is about. So, it’s important to think about wording and get it right by including keywords.
Slug: this is the URL of your page that also works to tell Google what your page is about.
4. Site Architecture
Another key aspect that Search Engines look for when ranking is a user friendly experience. This includes loading times, safe connections and mobile friendly experiences. All of which make it easier for search engines to ‘crawl’ through your website and find your content. This also applies to the thicker the web of links between pages on your website. Mobile friendliness is also important to think about as it is a key factor of how you will be ranked.
So, put time and effort into getting your website as user friendly as possible. This means fixing broken links, create mobile and web friendly browsers, and make navigation through your site clear.
5. Add More Links
Most people only look at the total number of links, but that’s a huge mistake for a few reasons:
Search engines might ignore the vast majority of links if they’re low-quality or spammy.
Links from brand new sites are worth more than repeat links from existing sites.
Links from other websites are worth more than lots of links from your own site (from one page to another).
Lastly, the number of total links you have matters as well, and you need to build high-quality backlinks at scale over time.
We already touched on this, but it bears repeating: It’s not just total links you’re after. At the end of the day, the site with the most high-quality links will usually have a better edge. However, it also depends on the pages you’re getting links to. Links to your homepage are good, but most natural links won’t be to a homepage unless they’re mentioning your brand name specifically. So, look into how you can make the most out of links on your site and make sure you are creating quality links.
Overall, SEO can be overwhelming to learn and includes a lot of components that you need to get right. We hope this article has explained the basics of what SEO is and how you can use these tips to boost your website rank. It’s important to note that to get a high rank and great SEO it’s important to learn from the experts, or even let the experts look after your SEO for you!
Our team of Experts pride ourselves on our complete digital marketing services. Whether it’s local SEO targeted to potential clients in local areas or nationwide, you can be assured when entrusting us with your online presence development that only the safest methods will be employed to ensure your SEO is nothing but organic.
Contact our team to help with your SEO by calling us on 01708 952952 ,visit our website here or give us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org