SEO- the “It” factor
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You might look at the heading and wonder what the “it” factor really is.
Well, the “it” factor is a quality that makes someone or something special.
In this case, that quality, or rather the process, is your SEO, and that special something is your website’s pages.
In short, SEO makes your website special.
In what way you ask?
SEO or search engine optimization is the process of fine-tuning a website to increase visibility on the search engine results page of Google or any other search engine when people search for products or services related to a business or brand.
This will in turn improve the quality and quantity of website traffic as well as exposure to your company or brand.
The best part is that it is absolutely free. Well, not exactly free as you do have to put in the time and effort.
The traffic a website gets through SEO is called organic search traffic or unpaid traffic because you literally don’t have to pay for ads in order for people to find and reach your website.
The search engine algorithm senses a user’s intent and makes the website pop up if it is relevant to the user’s search terms.
With perfect optimization, you can be sure that a website comes up with the first few results on the search engine results page. That essentially means “score” for you. Congratulations. You’ve hacked the algorithm and are now driving traffic to your website for zero monetary investment.
Being aware of your audience’s intent like what they search for, what words they use, and the type of content they wish to consume, is only half the battle won. The idea is to ensure this knowledge is transcribed in a way that search engine crawlers can find and comprehend. Now that is the winning ticket.
A closer look
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Search engines like Google’s main goal is to provide users with relevant and trustworthy results for a query. In order to do this, the search engine goes through various ranking factors to come to a conclusion about how a search result looks for a particular question or query.
The most important ranking factors that search engines look for are:
- Relevance: How much to the point a webpage or website is to the user’s query is a considerable ranking factor.
- Site Speed: The speed at which your website loads is important because no one has time to wait for a website that takes countless hours to come up and spill its contents.
- Mobile friendliness: A formatted website ensures that the website performs well on all mobile devices. This is very important when people are on the go and can seriously put people off if your website is not user-friendly.
- Backlinks: The quality and quantity of backlinks your website receives is a key determinant of ranking.
- Engagement: Click-through rates, time spent on the website, and bounce rates also determine a website’s overall ranking.
- Content: How well the content on a webpage tackles the searcher’s query is a major ranking factor.
Take a look at this video that captures important ranking factors.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mN5Dmst6p0M- 9 Google Ranking Factors
How do search engines do this?
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Search engines do this in three ways:
- Crawling: Spiders, web crawlers, or virtual creepy crawlies as I like to call them, are bots that search engines use to scour the internet in search of code and content for each URL they get their fangs on.
- Indexing: The storing and organizing of this captured content is called indexing. Once indexed, it is ready to be displayed as a result to relevant queries in the SERP.
- Ranking: Ensuring you provide content that is relevant to a searcher’s query allows the search engines to furbish the index for content which is then ordered by relevance and served up to the searcher. This ordering is known as ranking.
Higher the relevancy means that the search engines decide that a particular page is the better answer to a searcher’s question and shows the page higher up in the SERP.
Here’s a video that better explains crawling, indexing, and ranking.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5qOuoj_dwA- Crawling, Indexing, and Ranking
We know you want in, but how?
From the sound of it, who wouldn’t want in?
Like it was said before, If you want your website optimized, you have to be willing to put in the time and effort.
The algorithms we spoke about earlier consider thousands of ranking factors to establish the rankings of their SERPs. There are, however, three fundamental metrics that search engines gauge to find out the quality of a website and how it should rank on the search engine results page.
Let’s take a peek at these.
- Links: Backlinks from websites with authoritative domains are considered a good thing because a high-quality website owner will only link to other high-quality websites. The link is then seen as a vouch for quality. If your website gathers links from a bunch of other websites, it garners authority. In simple terms. Respect.
- Content: Keywords are key. A big part of SEO is creating unique content that involves weaving in keywords that search engine users are searching for. These search engines inspect the content of a webpage to determine its relevance for any search query.
- Page Structure: Webpages are written in HTML code and the structure of these codes influences the search engines’ potential to assess a particular webpage. Having relevant keywords in the URL, title, and headers of a webpage makes sure the site is crawlable and helps with the SEO of a website.
Take a look at this video that establishes the foundation of good SEO.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VxUe9zut2zY- How to start with good SEO- Mozlow hierarchy of needs
Complete optimization will ensure a website is ranked higher in the SERP.
Being ranked or placed number one on the SERP means that you will receive 40 to 60 percent of the total traffic for that query. The second and third rankings acquire an even lower percentage of traffic. Statistics say that only 2 or 3 percent of searchers move onto the second page.
With this data in hand, it would be foolish not to put in the time and effort to optimize your website.
The SEO hierarchy of needs
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The above picture is a spin on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs but for search engine optimization, enabling you to understand SEO better.
In Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, the basic needs for life are found at the base of the pyramid and you can climb up a tier only if the one below is satisfied. An example pertaining to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is that a person cannot meet his safety needs if his physiological needs of food, water, and shelter are not met. Simply put, you can’t expect security if you don’t have a house. You would first need a home in order to secure it.
In the same regard, if basic site requirements such as quality content is not met, it would not make any sense to commit resources to SEO objectives that are higher up such as link development.
Attention to detail
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Let’s have a look at each of the stages from “The SEO hierarchy of needs” in a little more detail so you can grasp the fundamentals of good SEO.
- Analytics and Web Intelligence: You could look at a website’s analytics implementation and analysis as the backdrop rather than the first stage of the pyramid. Without any sufficient data tracking visitor engagement on a website, no baseline from which to measure the effect of SEO efforts is formed. Without data, it is impossible to gauge whether a website or a campaign resonates with the audience.
- Keywords and Content: Optimizing a website’s content like images, texts, or videos is crucial to ensure that humans and search engines know what your site is about, what they can gain from it, and who the audience is. Seeing what works for your competition and keyword research are key elements in order to craft site content. Targeting those relevant keywords and weaving them into your unique and interesting content works wonders.
- Site architecture and on-page elements: The practice of SEO siloing is where you group, isolate, and interlink content about a certain topic, creating clean and distinct sections of related content on the website.
This helps with creating strong relevance with the search engines, makes it easier to find related content, ensures great user experience, and boosts rankings. On-page elements like the actual content on the page and metadata should easily be crawlable and indexable, further benefiting the search engines by helping establish the subject of the page.
- Usability and Web Design: It is a must to give your site visitors a pleasurable experience. A website’s design must give visitors what they need and want. Ensuring seamless usability is an important aspect of site performance, recall, and the emotional response of the user to the site.
- Link Development: Once a site’s content, structure, and design are in place, link building can then be looked into. Through exceptional content that is informative, entertaining, and unique, the chances of acquiring backlinks go up. Taking part in online social communities can increase the attention your website receives and helps build strong relationships, further driving the chances of inbound links.
Also, meta tags, social media presence, amazing product images, likes, shares, tweets, conversations on your social media, engagement, and overall popularity will tell search engines that your website or webpage is doing well. These social signals go a long way in establishing relevance, authority, expertise, and trust, further enabling search engines to show your website to searchers for their relevant queries.
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If the first four stages are in place and optimized, the SEO foundation will not crumble or shatter. This further enables quality search engines rankings. Only then can sufficient resources be moved toward a link building campaign, further helping to improve a website’s ranking.
In the next section, we will look at a few of the many SEO tools that digital marketers use in order to improve a brand’s presence and overall results.
Tools of the trade
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SEO tools help spot areas of opportunity and also concerns that may be hindering a website’s ranking and awareness in the SERPS. These SEO tools can help a brand gain insight into its marketing efforts. Advanced keyword research, information about the competition, and backlink investigation are just some of the ways that these SEO tools help in attaining that winning edge.
Staying competitive, improving overall internet presence, increasing website traffic, improving customer base, and also finally upping sales are some key areas that SEO tools help with.
Let’s look at five SEO tools and understand what they do.
- SemRush: This tool helps with SEO analysis, keyword research, competitor understanding, content marketing, and campaign management. It keeps an eye on things like domains, organic location on SERPs, cost-per-click ads, and a whole lot more.
- Google Search Console: Helping you understand how your website performs on Google search and giving suggestions on ways to improve visibility in order to drive more traffic are just a few things this handy tool does. It can also track incoming traffic, analyze keyword performance, and give suggestions on how to enhance the site’s position on the google index.
- MOZ pro: With this tool, you can acquire functions like link explorer, keyword explorer, and rank tracker among others. It helps collect data on site ranking, page optimization, site crawl, and link metrics which helps in executing SEO strategy. The tool also helps with finding issues on a site that hinder the experience of visitors.
- Ahrefs: It has a sizable backlink index as compared to other SEO tools. With the help of backlink audits, keyword and competitor analysis, and user documentation, it helps improve website traffic and rankings.
- SpyFu: This tool helps users discover what keywords work for competitors and also shows competitors’ ad campaigns and organic searches. It is so focussed on the competitor that it also gives you details of monthly clicks your competitor gets, their Google ad campaigns, and so much more.
Have a look at this video that talks about a few great and free SEO tools that you could use.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3Q-_A5lT7c&t=132s- My 9 favorite SEO tools for 2022
These tools are undeniably useful and will help an online business gain success by helping tailor your digital marketing strategy which works in favor of improving credibility, competitive advantage, traffic, rankings, website usability, and overall engagement rates.
The bottom line
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This video encapsulates the importance of SEO.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gaA5kqA63Cw- What is SEO/ Why do we need SEO/ Importance of SEO
From everything we have gone through in the above sections, it wouldn’t be very wise to not adopt an SEO strategy for your brand or business.
However good your website is and however resourceful it is, it will never reach the intended audience or gain the visibility it deserves without good SEO.
When i say good SEO starts right from the very beginning, I mean right from the point you collect data, engage in competitor analysis, conduct keyword research, flesh out content, look into website architecture and usability, get into the technical aspects of things, work on link development, and everything in between and beyond would require complete optimization for the brand to become successful in the digital marketing age.
Ensuring your website is completely optimized from the get-go is the only way to make sure your business or brand gains relevance, visibility, traffic, and finally conversions.
A good SEO will bring in more customers than organic search, and improves overall user experience which in turn improves trust and credibility, benefits other areas of marketing, is trackable, and improves brand awareness.
SEO tools must be used in order to build a strategy for your brand and blindly adopting SEO without these tools in your arsenal would be near suicide.
The full list of advantages is impossible to draw out as the sky’s the limit with great SEO.
SEO’s final and main goal is to improve your business and achieve the goals of your bottom line.
Are you keen on ranking first in the SERPS? Want a great return on your investment? Want to ensure your content is to point with the use of the right keywords woven into your content?
Look no further. There’s never any need to go the distance alone.
https://biginternetcommerce.com/# has got you covered. Our competence in search engine optimization ensures that searchers are aware of your organization’s existence by helping you show up in the top five organic search results. Choose us as your go-to partner and solution provider for all your SEO needs and watch how your brand goes onto the next level.