SEO Basics: A Beginner’s Starting Point For SEO
Understanding The SEO Basics
Amongst the many ways to market your business, using search engine optimisation (SEO) is one of the most effective methods, which will provide you with a powerful return on your investment in order to increase website traffic and sales.
The objective of SEO is to improve a website’s ‘unpaid results’ (also known as ‘organic results’), meaning its positioning within a search engine without the website owner or its administrators paying for this privilege. Whether you wish to improve your website’s ranking in image, video, or news search results, the way you edit its wording content, design your HTML code or promote a site in order to increase the number of backlinks or inbound links, will manipulate the indexing system algorithms of popular search engines such as Google and Yahoo.
On-Page SEO & Off-Page SEO
On-page SEO involves controlling the factors related to your website, such as the quality of its underlying coding, your website’s visual aesthetic, text-based content and the user-friendliness of your site. By ensuring that these elements are of a high standard, you can increase the probability of your SEO endeavours resulting in successful outcomes. A link-building strategy can only do so much if the website itself is not appealing to anyone. People generally only share content that is well-written, well-researched, witty or captivating.
Off-page SEO on the other hand, involves such things as generating a social media buzz around your website, securing valuable links from other websites which point to pages on your website and other marketing activities which add value but are not based on tinkering with your website itself. Off-page SEO is marketing gold because it lets popular search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo know how others perceive your website. The more valuable links to your webpages that exist and the more people talk about your website, the more search engines will assume that you have great content.
Why do you need it?
If you want to position yourself for great success SEO is a non-cost intensive way to achieve this. Typically, website owners vending products or services will use SEO to acquire specifically targeted visitors who can then be converted to customers. Naturally and as has been confirmed by a plethora of studies, most Internet users will click on the pages which appear the highest in search results. Therefore, SEO is an important element of any serious marketing plan designed to help website owners obtain a premium position in popular search engines like Google.
What SEO measures should I take in 2020?
To get ahead of your competition, it helps to know what steps to take in order to secure a highly coveted place within the first page of a popular search engine such as Google. For 2020, your focus should be on adopting the following techniques for improved rank in search engines:
- Ensure that you have a short URL containing your target keyword (Google has hinted that 3 to 5 words is the sweet spot for improved search engine ranking);
- Produce highly informative content of around 1800-2000 words as search engines appear to prefer longer articles;
- Have your keyword appear early on within the first paragraph;
- Use LSI keywords throughout your content so that search engines understand the essence of your article, can more accurately assess the depth of your subject-matter knowledge on the written topic and also drive organic traffic to your page for semantically-related searches;
- SEO your article title tag in order to enhance your click through rate as Google in particular monitors how many visitors click on links to your page for ranking purposes;
- Leverage multimedia in order to make your content appealing and encourage users to remain on the site for longer periods of time, as search engines take time spent by visitors into consideration;
- Don’t neglect the importance of speed – if your page is slow to load, no one will wait around long enough to see the great content that you have put together!
- Never be afraid to create outbound links to competitor pages – it actually improves your ranking when you link to bloggers in your network or niche as it allows search engines to understand the content of your page better;
- Be sure to have outbound links open up in a new tab so that your ranking is not affected by having too high a ‘bounce rate’; and
- Where relevant, add outbound links to authoritative websites such as Wikipedia (yes – this is despite what you may have learnt in college/university!) or other reliable and popular pages within your niche.
What can you expect from an SEO Giant?
Step 1: Technical advice
The best SEO Giants will proceed by determining for instance, whether or not your website is being accurately read by the Google spider. They will assess the quality of your website’s positioning, website errors, establishing which ones should be quickly identified but do not appear in a primary position.
An SEO analysis will be conducted in order to ascertain which search words are most relevant to your craft, sales purposes or traffic-boosting objectives. In addition, of great importance is the analysis of how your competitors have performed. At the end, you should be provided with specially-tailored SEO advice which outlines the technical improvements which can be made to your website in for improved search engine performance.
Step 2: Content
One of the most important aspect of SEO is the quality of the content on your website. In order for search engines to accurately define your pages and grant them a prime position on search engines, not only are high quality articles, free of grammatical errors and appropriate for the audience essential, but specially curated key words which will naturally generate traffic must be used. Your SEO partner will brief you on how the texts should be written, how to optimise your webpage for the most popular search engines and provide you with polished articles produced with SEO in mind, but in the end that are USEFUL for the consumer. Useless content is out the window in 2020.
Step 4: Link-building
Search engines calculate the quality and quantity of external links to your website for the purposes of determining the popularity of your site. Inherent in this task is an analysis of the links possessed by your highest-performing competitors. In addition, you should be provided with an explanation as to how to build effective and relevant links to your website.
Don’t allow yourself to be swindled by inexperienced and ineffective SEO partners or agencies who are simply trying to take your money and provide little value in return.
So, there you have it – our top tips for SEO-optimisation for the year 2020. If you follow them carefully, they will help you to win the battle for recognition and hopefully propel your website to a premier position in search engines!