SEO – Explained In Layman’s Words
You would have come across the term SEO several times, it is a term often used when we talk about websites, marketing and so on. Ever wondered what it means? Well, let us read the following article to understand what the term means without getting confused by the technical jargon involved.
SEO is an acronym for Search Engine Optimization. SEO ensures that your website or blog page is ranked higher than other websites on search engines. To break it down, ever wonder when you type something in google, the first thing that pops up are websites answering your questions. They do not just occur due to a random coincidence; it is the application of the correct SEO as well as the apt use of algorithms that places one website over the other. Hence, creating a level of hierarchy.
Now, let us go into each detail of the process. You just came across the term ‘search engine’, but other than Google popping up in your mind, what else did you think of? As search engine is a program that runs on the internet and provides users with the information they are seeking via the help of keywords and phrases. Few examples are – Bing, Swisscows, DuckDuckGo.
In order to understand the role of SEO, we must first understand how search engines work.
A search engine contains three main steps. They are as follows –
1) Crawling –
Crawling is a process conducted by search engines in order to find the most updated content, this could be in the form of websites, blog pages and so on. Search engines use a software which is based on an algorithm in order to find which site to go through and how regularly. If your website has a link attached to it, the search engine will detect it and add it to the list of websites that need to be gone through. In this manner, new content is discovered.
2) Indexing –
After the first step, the search engine combines a humongous index of all words it sees on the web pages and keeps track of their location. The content in said index is extracted and is then compared by the search engine’s algorithm to determine its importance in comparison to other web pages.
3) Ranking –
The last step is called ranking, this is where SEO comes to play. For example, you typed in the word ‘psychology’ in Google, now the search engine will check for various pages that contain this word. These pages are provided with a score based on the search engine’s algorithm. Google, then will display the pages with the highest score.
Before we dwell into how to ensuring SEO success, let us get to know more about the types of SEO-
· On-Page SEO
As the name suggests, this revolves around your online presence, that is your webpage or website and methods in order to optimize the website. On-page SEO includes the keywords involved, the type of content, the quality of content and so on.
· Off-Page SEO
This type of SEO ensures the type of relationship your website shares with other websites. What is the point of this? Well, a website which contains strong supportive links in it is more likely to rank higher in a search engine’s algorithm. A well-established supportive link in your webpage creates a sense of trust and reliability in your content and users are led to believe that they have come across quality content.
· Technical SEO
Technical SEO refers to all elements of your webpage, except for the content. The main purpose of this SEO is to ensure that users are able to read your website, that is increase your website’s readability as well as warrantying a good user experience. A page that loads quickly, can be accessed on the mobile phone, is secured and can be gone through via the search engine’s algorithm is surely bound to place your site at a higher rank.
· Local SEO
This SEO unlike the others, is highly target. The word local refers to the SEO focusing on a small group of people, rather than targeting a huge audience. It focuses more on serving a local audience, this could be through an age-specific demographic, generation-specific and so on. The best part of this SEO is that it is free!
· YouTube SEO
Did you know there was a type of SEO called ‘YouTube SEO’? This SEO is extremely niche. Not many indivduals know that YouTube is one of the most popular search engines. Moreover if your video does rank slightly higher in YouTube, it creates a huge impact for your business. Whether it is a small 5 minute video to a long 20 minute video, if it is searched on and clicked multiple times, it acts as a gold mine to your SEO success.
How To Ensure SEO success?
1) Select niche keywords
Based on your websites main theme or products, you need to conduct some amount of research. This research will help you know what words are users typing in to see your product. Search engines look for keywords on your website and uses them to decide how relevant your content is to a specific search query. There could be various important key words in your webpage, how do you decide? This is where you need to select words that have low competition and high search volumes. There are several tool online to help you decide the best keyword. Now, once your keyword is found inculcate it as much as possible – in your webpage, blogs, social media platforms and so on.
2) Able to detect technical dialect
This means that search engines are capable of detecting good content, so if your content is not original and involves a bombarding of keywords your website will not be provided with a high score. Content that is unique, highly engaging will draw the search engine’s algorithm towards it, moreover you can add links to other credible sources which will place your website at a higher rank.
3) Marketing Online
The mere presence of your website is not enough to make your site rank higher than other sites. A social media presence proves to be relevant for your website as it presents your content in a relatable manner. Furthermore, your followers can share your content via various methods, thereby positively impacting your SEO results.
4) Mobile-friendly version
Not everyone will look at your webpage on their laptop or PC, they may also look at it on their mobile phone. Thus, it is important to ensure that your webpage is mobile friendly and looks good on smartphones. Google stated that “mobile-friendly sites show higher in search results and account for over half of searches on Google.com”.
5) Longer Content
Yes, the longer one’s content, the higher is it to rank on search engines. Most CEO’s believe that the longer the content, the more complete it seems. Complete content includes: trustworthy content, evidence to support your content.
Importance Of SEO
SEO aids in your content being recognized, which means it makes it easier for people to find your webpage. The more effective your SEO efforts, the higher is your ranking and the better is your visibility.
· Better Visitor Experience
SEO helps in creating a user-friendly experience for your customers. Hence, users want to stay longer on your site and explore it more. Certain factors such as – making your webpage more interactive for the users, increasing your page load speed all make an impact on providing your users with a good experience.
If your web page or site is constantly one of the first things that users view in their search engines, they begin to notice your brand. This goes a long way in order to build your brand’s growth and placing it on the map.
· Offline Sales Increase
Yes, you read that right! SEO does not just impact your online marketing but your offline sales as well. Most individuals search for your webpage, reviews attached to it. Now, if your webpage ticks all the criteria, they are even more inclined to give your store a shot.
Now that we have a plethora of knowledge regarding SEO, its types, how to reach SEO success and its importance, we can go and improve our website and allow it to receive a high score on Google. It can get daunting and challenging in the beginning, however due to the presence of a boon called the internet, there are several sites that help you optimize your website to its capacity while keeping your brain map of the webpage intact. Use your newly gained knowledge to improve your webpage and to receive more awareness of your brand!