What is SEO?

 

Search Engine Optimization is the process of optimizing your web pages, blog posts, or videos so that search engines can understand what they are about. Search Engines then rank them based on how relevant and valuable they think it is for users. By ranking high up in Search Engine Results Pages (SERP), you will be exposing your website to a lot more potential & targeted audience without having to pay for the search engines to appear on their first search pages.

Many factors influence search results and rankings. Some of these include:

– Website content

– Site speed & loading time

– Social media activity (likes, tweets, shares)

– Page size or length of pages

A Step by Step Guide for an Effective SEO Campaign (Complete SEO Guide), Dr-Business

Is SEO a ranking factor in search engines?

 

The short answer is an absolute yes! Search Engine Optimization is a vital factor that helps increase your business to rank higher on search engines results pages (SERP). And to understand how search engines work, we will break them into two main parts;

1- Organic search results.

2- Paid search results 

What is organic search?

Organic Search results are ranked based on a web page’s value to the target audience. The rank of each result then depends upon several factors such as; relevancy, reputation, and popularity on the internet (social media shares).

So the next time you hear SEO, the first thing that should come to your mind is “Organic Search” Search engine optimization (SEO) affects the visibility of a web page in search engines, mainly through On-page & Off-Page Search Engine Optimization. A search engine’s goal is to provide search results that are relevant and appropriate for search queries issued by users, which means more keywords on a page matching search words and how the search words are used on the page. Which is the process of optimizing your web pages, blog posts, or videos so that search engines can understand what they are about. Search Engines then rank them based on how relevant and valuable they think it is for users. By ranking high up in Search Engine Results Pages (SERP), you will be exposing your website to a lot more potential & targeted audience without having to pay for the search engines to appear on their first search pages.

“Tip” Organic search queries are the links that appear after the paid search queries on top of the google search page. 

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What is paid search ads

These are the ads you see at the top of your search page, right next to organic search listings (SERP), paid for by advertisers who want people to click on them instead of other listings.

Search Engines sell search ads for top rankings to the highest bidder, and depending on how much an advertiser is willing to pay per click , search engines will place their ad in a higher or lower position. Search ads advertisements can be highly effective if done right; however, not all business owners know whether it’s worth investing into paid search results or not. It should always be considered as part of your overall internet marketing strategy and not used only when you cannot rank organically for specific keywords. After all, Paid Ads are just one way through which businesses advertise themselves online.

As we now understand how search engines work. We will focus on the organic search results “SEO” and exploit its potential for ranking higher on search engines without paying for search engines.

A Step by Step Guide for an Effective SEO Campaign (Complete SEO Guide), Dr-Business

The three main ranking factors for a successful SEO campaign;

Search Engine Optimization is divided into three core parts. And without any of these parts, your SEO campaign would be affected heavily in a wrong way, even if you did your research well and wrote top-notch content on a specific topic.

1- On-Page SEO;

On-Page SEO is all about improving your web pages or blog posts in a way that search engines understand what they are about. Keywords play an important role in ranking, which you should always consider when writing content, whether for a blog post, home page, or even the about us page or any page on your website. On-page Optimization includes using the right keywords throughout your text and Meta Tags, Alt texts & meta descriptions (keywords & descriptions) to make it easier for search engines to find them when someone searches on Google or Bing. A high-quality website with high-quality content is helpful when it comes to improving your rankings, but if you are not getting the right keywords in place for your posts or pages just yet, then there’s no need to worry. The good news is there are plenty of tools out there to check your rankings, keywords & competition.

Google Analytics; one of the most used ones by digital marketers alike that will help you find high volume traffic keywords for high-quality content on website pages or blog posts.

Site Explorer; another excellent tool that shows what kind of keywords people use.

A good On-Page SEO strategy would be making sure you use your target keywords as much as possible without sounding spammy; this means not stuffing too many words into one paragraph just because you want to rank higher up in SERPs. You also need to pay attention to including relevant images with descriptive image names, titles, descriptions, and alt-text. On-Page SEO is undoubtedly the most crucial part of any SEO strategy because it can dramatically help your web pages appear more relevant to search engines which will, in turn, rank them higher up on SERPs.

When looking for what keywords should be included while writing content, make sure you consider;

– Keyword Density (a percentage figure that tells how many times a keyword appears)

– Competitors Keywords (keywords used by other websites competing with yours)

– Search Volume (how often users are searching for this word or phrase online). If there isn’t enough volume, it probably won’t benefit your website if you go for this term/phrase instead of another one with more significant volumes.

– Relevancy (how much a keyword relates to your business, website, or the topic you are writing about)

– Search Trends (Google Adwords Keyword Planner): It’s the best way for you to understand how search engines classify keywords, their popularity over time and give you some clues about high-performing phrases. This is also helpful in guiding users towards high-volume terms that will have a more significant potential of ranking on top SERPs once they start seeing results from Google Analytics.

“Tip” make sure you avoid competitive keywords, as they are hard to rank for on the major search engines like google search.

“Tip” Make sure you have done your keyword research using keyword research tools like SuferSEO as these keyword tools tell you how competitive is your target keyword, how many times you should include those keywords or phrases in your content & what alternatives you should consider.

2- Technical SEO

Making your website more visible to search engines is the goal of technical SEO. Internal linking, website URL structure, page speed, and mobile usability are all technical optimization examples. For search engines to crawl and read through your site correctly, you must use structured data (JSON-LD), create a sitemap, and make sure you have a solid internal linking structure.

– JSON LD: structured data is a way for you to provide search engines with more structured information about the content of your website. It helps search engine robots better understand what they are reading and index them accordingly.

– Sitemaps: sitemap formats make it easier for users and search engine spiders to find pages on your website.

– Internal links: internal links are a powerful way to help users navigate your website and find what they’re looking for, but it’s also an essential factor when search engines decide where to rank each page in their index.

– Mobile usability: search engine bots can now read web pages through your mobile device. It will also help people find you if they search on their smartphones or tablets.

– Website URL structure & subfolders are good for SEO because search engines know what to expect when crawling each page of your website, so it makes sense to have a solid strategy in place regarding how you want users and crawlers alike to access the content on your site.”Websites with deep hierarchies tend to perform better than those without.”

– Page speed is also vital for search engines because they want to index quickly and provide users with an outstanding search experience. If your website takes too long to load, it could affect how well you rank on search engine results pages (SERPs).

“Tip” Make sure you have descriptive URLs which search engines can easily crawl and rank.

“Tip” Use descriptive keywords in the titles of each blog post or page that reflect its contents precisely.

“Tip” Make sure you correctly fill up all meta tags (description & title) under the SEO settings panel inside the dashboard. The report should be particular and clear about what topics are covered within that specific article.

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3- Off-page SEO

Off-page SEO is the external stuff you can do to improve your search engine rankings. It includes factors like social media, citations, and external links that point back to your website/blog page. These things are external because they don’t appear on your site or blog pages but still affect how Google ranks them.

– Social media: each social profile you own has a direct effect on your SEO.

– Citations or backlinks from other websites can also help increase your authority and bring more traffic to it, but there is no point in having just any site linking back to you. Ensure those sites have an excellent online presence and high domain ratings because that will indirectly affect how Google ranks your pages. IP” You can easily add citations or backlinks from a variety of online directories, high authority websites, and other resources.

– There are so many ways to get links pointing back to your website/blog, which is why you must do proper link building SEO strategies only if the sites where you want external links have a good reputation in their respective industries because that will indirectly help drive more visitors to your site too. So make sure you know who they’re linking out to before doing any off-page SEO activities. Linking out with irrelevant sites might hurt your domain ratings rather than helping them.

“Tip”: For me not to waste my time looking at spammy content, I use tools like Ahrefs & Moz Open Site Explorer & my favourite SuferSEO

“Tip” always asks for links with “do follow”. Off-page SEO is about building external factors that influence your website’s search engine rankings.

“Tip” make sure you have an excellent social media presence on sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to increase your web page’s authority for significant search engines like Google.

“Tip” if possible, try to get quality testimonials & reviews about your business/product, which you could put on your website. Hence, they come up every time someone searches relevant keywords related to what you do.

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