What Is SEO and Why Is It Important?
SEO is the abbreviation of Search Engine Optimization. Most of the website traffic comes from the organic search results from Google. SEO helps you rank your website against specific keywords and compete with your rivals on Google’s SERPs. Because ranking higher on Google SERP results in more organic traffic to your site. SEO is the practice of optimizing a website or a web page to enhance the quality and quantity of organic traffic. SEO demonstrates to search engines that your website content is best against specific keywords. This article is all about the basics of SEO for beginners.
Benefits of SEO:
- SEO attracts more organic traffic.
- Retains the consistency of traffic and attracts more traffic.
- SEO helps you attain organic traffic without any expenditure.
How Google will recognize your site:
SEO helps you rank your website on top results, but you can’t rank higher if Google doesn’t recognize your website. Google finds websites on its own, but there are some manual steps to submit your website to make Google crawl and index your website.
Submitting your site to Google manually increases the chances of index faster and within a short time. The first step is to create sitemaps. Sitemaps are the files that list all key URLs of pages of your sites. The second step is to create an account on Google Search Console and submit your sitemap over there. This will make your site index faster and allow Google to know everything about your site.
How SEO is done?
SEO is a continuous and ongoing process that needs to be updated and regularly checked. The whole process is divided into four aspects;
- Keyword Research
- On-Page SEO
- Off-Page SEO
- Technical SEO
We will discuss all four aspects briefly in this guide, we will focus on the basics and try to understand the importance and working of each facet mentioned above.
Keywords are the foundation of SEO, the basis on which you rank your website to gain traffic from organic searches. Keyword research is a process of finding the best possible keywords for your site by analyzing what your customers are searching for and how much organic traffic those keywords can send towards your way or how difficult it might be to rank for those keywords and what’s the competition on those relevant keywords. The steps of the process are discussed below:
- Find Keywords: The first step of the process is to search and brainstorm for potential keywords. Understand what kind of queries your target audience is making and what are they trying to search for. Try to find those words and phrases that define your niche and brand perfectly. You can use those keywords as a seed keyword to find out more relevant keyword ideas and long-tail keywords. Simply just use Free Keyword Research Tools and get keyword ideas reports. Then choose keywords that can work best for your brand.
- Analyze Potential Traffic: When you have a handful of potential keywords, now you can check for the estimated monthly search volume of those keywords. Which will help you estimate the potential of those keywords to generate organic traffic on your site. High-volume keywords grab more traffic as compared to low-volume keywords. But only this factor is not enough to attract traffic, other instances also work together to gain traffic for your site.
- Check the difficulty to be ranked: After analyzing keywords search volume and selecting keywords for your site, now you move on with checking their difficulty. Because ranking on high-volume keywords is not an easy task. Analyze the keyword difficulty score of each keyword by using different tools. They score each keyword from 0 to 100 which helps you analyze your keyword list and makes it easy for you to select keywords for initial targeting.
On-page SEO Techniques include creating content searchers are searching for and optimizing it to help search engines to understand your website and content easily. Let’s explore some techniques and get an idea of how you can optimize your website or web page to rank it on search engines considering on-page factors;
- Content Should Match Searchers Intent: When users find any irrelevant content on your website they are likely to bounce back from your site. Because of that your chances to rank on top shrink or equals zero. To create high-quality and valuable content, you can judge by viewing your rivals, which are already ranking on top for your keyword. To rank your website you need to consider the search intent and create content that aligns perfectly with the search intent.
- Use Logical and Descriptive URL Slugs: It is preferred by professionals providing Search Engine Optimization Services that create a URL that is logical and understandable and not too long. Keep it simple and short. For each page or each post on your website, you need to set up a slug that comes at the end of the main URL, showing what the page is all about. It depends on the subfolders and partitions before the slug.
Let’s understand the structure of a good URL with an example: Suppose your target keyword is “SEO for Beginners”, if you don’t have any subfolders, you can set your keyword as the slug.
And if there are some generic subfolders then you can set it like that;
This is how you can set your URLs and make them readable and understandable to grab audience attention.
- Focus on Title Tag: Title tags are the clickable links that display in the SERPs. That’s one of the few ways by which you can entice searchers to click on your website and land on your page. So, it’s important to make it as convincing and understandable as possible. If you are selling a product so you can create a title tag explaining the qualities of that product. Which helps you grasp the consideration of your target addressees.
- Write a Compelling Meta Description: Description is all about the brief overview of what searchers will see when they enter that website. The description should include the qualities of your product or service with the focused keyword. It allows users to get an overview or an idea about your website or about that product.
- Optimize Images on your Website: Images can play an important part, as they are ranked in the Google Images tab and they could send good traffic to your site. So, how you can optimize your images?
- Filenames help search engines understand the type of image and its category. So, name them well with a short and related filename. Like tools.png is better than IMG-123.png.
- Alt tag works as a code that describes the image and tells users that what type of image is that when your image fails to load. So, use Alt text and describe your images.
- Compress your images and then upload them on your website. It helps you to improve your page speed.
Off-page SEO mainly consists of link building. Links from other high DA websites work as a vote and show Google that people are coming to your website through that link because your content is valuable. It is an important factor but getting good ones is not an easy task. There are different tactics of link building like outreaching, Guest Blogging, Articles, etc.
- In guest blogging, you write a blog post or guest post for other websites and link your website with that content or with the author’s bio.
- Understand how competitors are gaining backlinks and create a link-building strategy. Using any tool, enter your keyword and see how many backlinks your competitors have. Reach out to the referring domains and ask them to post your content on their website. It helps you build quality backlinks.
- Try to create better content using the Skyscraper technique. Which allows you to build links with better content as compared to that already available on the internet. Find the relevant topic, create something better than that and ask people to link to your content.
Technical SEO can be a bit complicated aspect to understand. But as we already discussed the basics it will be easy for you to understand. Technical SEO is a process of helping search engines to understand, crawl and index your web pages. It keeps you updated with indexing, helps you reclaim lost links, allows you to do internal linking, and adds a schema markup.
Wrapping It Up:
Everything discussed above is a basic overview of SEO. Once you get into SEO, you will find out how great and deep is the sea of SEO. When you start doing optimization you will notice and learn many new things and practices. SEO is all about ranking your website on SERPs, attracting traffic, and maintaining that inflow, and retaining your audience. Regular SEO audits allow you to keep an eye on your website structure and help you upgrade your website according to the new algorithms and competition. That is prescribed by professionals providing SEO Services California.