As people who live and breathe digital marketing, we've heard every version of “I want more traffic to my website.” For folks who ask us what they should do to increase their online visibility, we point them to SEO.
Search Engine Optimization, commonly abbreviated as SEO, is crucial in driving traffic and increasing visibility for websites. However, the world of SEO can be overwhelming, with constantly changing algorithms and practices. If you don’t know exactly what to do, it can be easy to get lost in the world of keywords and Google Analytics.
In this guide, we'll break down the basics of SEO and provide step-by-step instructions on how to do SEO like a pro.
What is SEO?
On page seo services involve optimizing the content on your website to coincide with what your target demographic is searching for. On-page SEO is the process of optimizing your website's content, meta tags, headings, and other elements to rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs). By utilizing on-page SEO services, you can increase the visibility of your website, attract more organic traffic, and improve your chances of users clicking on your website and visiting your page. The goal is to enhance your website's visibility and drive targeted organic traffic through effective on-page SEO strategies.
People use Google to look up everything, from where to go out for dinner to the best place to buy plumbing gear. If your brand’s website does a good job of providing relevant answers, you stay on top of SERPs and drive more traffic to your website.
The game-changer you need for your business can be found in knowing what your competitors are doing, what strategies companies in your field are employing, and what your users want.
There are many ways to go about this, and we’ve covered everything in this article!
How does SEO work?
SEO works by optimizing a website’s content to be relevant to what users are searching for to ensure relevance in search results. When a user makes a query on a search engine, they use a word or phrase to find results. These words or phrases are called keywords. They form the foundation of all SEO.
SEO optimizes a website for search engine rankings by conducting keyword research and building a strong backlink profile. Backlinks are inbound links that grow your website’s trustworthiness and authority.
The results of SEO can immediately be observed in your webpage’s rankings once you start optimizing your website, but it can take weeks or even months to fully take effect. And even then, SEO is a constant, ongoing process that requires careful planning to ensure the best results.
With all of this taken into consideration, SEO helps you improve two key aspects of your brand’s website:
This is what a search engine uses to determine where to place your website on SERPs. It starts at zero and goes all the way to the end of the search engine results for a specific query. Ideally, you want your website to rank on top for all the relevant queries for your niche. Achieving this requires effective SEO strategies. Global SEO services, can significantly enhance your website's ranking and visibility across various regions and languages, ensuring your website is prominently displayed in search results for relevant queries worldwide.
The visibility of your website is how much authority your brand has in a certain niche. Simply put, if your website ranks high for a lot of relevant keywords in your niche, your brand will have better online visibility, making it easier for users to find your website.
Both of these factors together help your brand achieve the ultimate goal of driving high-quality traffic to your website.
How does Google rank your website?
Google has one simple goal: to provide users with the most relevant answers to their queries.
If your website meets their criteria for relevance, you get better visibility. Every time you do a Google search, their algorithms determine the webpages that are the most relevant to your query.
To give users the best results, search engines primarily look at two factors: relevance and authority.
Relevance between your website’s content and the search query. And your website’s authority in a certain niche. The more popular your website is, the higher your domain’s authority.
How exactly Google’s search algorithms work is a closely guarded secret. But with time, SEO experts have determined a set of key factors that help a search engine choose which websites to rank higher.
These form the building blocks of SEO. Your website’s trustworthiness and user-friendliness are among the most important factors.
From big keyword-optimized blog posts to simpler things like having a shorter page load time and optimized image filenames, everything contributes to your website’s online visibility.
Building an SEO Strategy
An SEO strategy is where it all comes together. It’s a detailed, comprehensive plan for helping your website build authority in your industry and gain better rankings on SERPs.
Your SEO strategy should include on-page optimization, keyword research and analysis, off-page optimization, and earning inbound links to build trust.
Here are three building blocks that make up a good SEO strategy:
- Keyword research
- On-Page Optimization/Technical Optimization
- Backlink Profile
If you want Google to rank your page higher, you need to tell Google what keywords you want to rank for, and you have to make it crystal clear.
Keywords help a search engine understand a user’s query and its relevance to the content on your website. Any good SEO strategy starts with good keyword research. Dive deep into what your users are looking for, and provide them with answers.
Tools like Answer the Public, Ahrefs, and SEMrush can be really helpful in this regard. They show you the most searched keywords in your niche and their search volumes. You can use this to create a list of keywords that you can potentially rank high for based on your brand’s current domain authority.
Once you’ve identified a list of initial keywords you want to rank for, the next step is to do some on-page optimization
On-Page Optimization, also known as On-Page SEO, is the process of optimizing your webpage. This helps ensure the search engine can match your webpage’s content to a relevant search query.
Below, we’ve highlighted some of the most important on-page optimization aspects to look out for:
- Meta Tags: The title of your post, the description, and the subheadings (also called H1 and H2 tags) all need to be optimized for the keyword(s) you are targeting.
- URL: A optimized URL that emphasizes the keyword will be more easily noticed by Google and thus rank higher.
- The first paragraph: Google is known to put a higher emphasis on the text on top, so it’s best to highlight the target keyword here.
- Images: Search engines see the graphics on your website through their filenames, so it’s best to ensure that most of your images have the keyword in their filenames.
There are a few more aspects to on-page optimization, like optimizing the loading time on your page by using smaller file sizes. But these aspects are the bulk of it.
We also recommend having longer pieces of content. For example, in the case of a blog, 1500-2500 words per blogpost is the sweet spot.
If you’ve read this far, you know that Google will rank pages based on two aspects: relevance and authority.
While the keywords take care of the relevance aspect of the equation, your website’s authority is what determines how high it’ll show up on a search engine’s results. Think of it this way, if the internet was a high school, the person with the most social authority would be the popular kid, right? The one everyone talks about.
That’s what we want to achieve with backlinks. Also called inbound links, they are references to your website on other webpages. Each time another website points its reader to your content, you get a backlink.
So the more websites you have talking about you, the higher your authority.
Google uses the quantity and quality of the links to be a sign of the website’s authority.
There are usually a few factors to consider when looking for high-quality backlinks:
- Trustworthiness of the source: Google trusts links from a website that has established itself to be a trustworthy source. Links from more trustworthy sites will have a greater impact on your ranking
- Relevance to your content: Links from sources in a similar niche to yours will have more impact and credibility over those from random sources.
How to Build Your Backlink Profile?
The process of getting more backlinks and building your backlink profile is called Link Building in SEO.
If done right, link building requires creative and strategic thinking. To get high-quality links for your website, you must develop a backlink strategy. And you need to do it all while not making it obvious for the search engine that your backlinks are deliberate.
That can be a tall order.
Here are some ideas to go about it:
- Organic Links: These are links from newspaper articles or magazines, etc about your brand that you’ve acquired naturally.
- Backlink Outreach: You can reach out to other websites to reference your links. If you create good content, it can be beneficial for them to link to your website.
- Guest Posts: You can publish guest posts on third-party websites. In exchange for your content, these websites will often give you one or more backlinks.
- Social Media and Other Profiles: A lot of websites allow you to create profiles where you can put links to your content. These links are often not too credible, but given how easy it can be to achieve, they can be worth it.
Tracking SEO Results
The next step in the SEO strategy is to figure out a way to find what works and what doesn’t. SEO growth can be tracked by setting up a set of KPIs that you want to target and then tracking them over time. Some of the most common KPIs include:
- Organic Traffic
- Referring Domains
- Session Time and Bounce Rate
- Number of Indexed Pages
- Conversions from Organic Traffic
- Top landing pages on your website
How Should You Approach SEO?
SEO is crucial for any brand. There are a few ways you can get started.
First, you can do your SEO yourself. This will be the cheapest option, as this will just include the cost of getting online tools to track your SEO performance. But you must first ask yourself - Can you do SEO? Can you invest time in learning the nuances of SEO? Do you have the resources in-house to help you redesign your website, or troubleshoot if you accidentally disavow genuine backlinks?
SEO is a long-term commitment, and just like any other skill, you constantly have to keep at it to see tangible results. That takes a substantial amount of time and resources; resources that might be better allocated to other aspects of your business.
The next best thing? Hire the experts. Reaching out to a good Marketing Agency can be a blessing for your website’s online visibility. They are experts in SEO, you won’t have to keep verifying their work, and you can utilize the resources that you just saved for tasks that are better suited.
Usually, hiring SEO experts can be up to a few thousand dollars per month, so be sure to do your research before you settle on an agency to help you out.
SEO is a cost-effective, long-term way to boost your brand’s online presence and drive more high-quality traffic to your website. It can be worth it to invest in good SEO, but it’s also important to look at the factors before committing to a decision.
If you have questions about SEO or doubts about how well your website stands up against competitors, feel free to reach out to us here!
Q: How SEO works step by step?
A: Here are the steps to doing SEO:
- Find keywords
- Create content using the keywords
- Add keywords to the title, description, headings, and URL
- Build links to your website
- Monitor Performance and reiterate
Q: How is SEO done on a website?
A: SEO works on two aspects: relevance and trustworthiness. Relevance comes from keywords and queries that users enter into search engines. And Trustworthiness comes from backlinks. To do SEO for a website, first, do keyword research. Find what your users are searching for and create content based on them. Then build a strong backlink profile through organic links or outreach. Finally, analyze your results and reiterate. Remember SEO is a marathon, not a sprint.
Q: What are the 4 stages of SEO?
A: Here are the 4 stages of SEO
- Set up your website
- Find a keyword to target
- Optimize the webpage for the keyword
- Build links for the page
Q: How do you implement SEO?
A: SEO can be implemented with the help of a well-thought-out SEO strategy. It involves keyword research, on-page and off-page optimizations, link building, and keyword analysis.