How SEO works and SEO marketing is a mystery to many. Some believe it is a waste of time, a dark art that is solely controlled by Google ranks websites they like most. But that’s not the case.
Businesses that take the time and energy to focus on their SEO, reap benefits that others can only dream of having. After all, who doesn’t want to be number one in Google?
If you are number one in Google for your chosen targeted keyword, then you will receive 33% of all traffic for that chosen keyword online. So that’s 38% of all web traffic heading to your website, freely, for typing in that keyword into a search engine. If you had an eCommerce website and you’re number one in Google for your product or service, just think of the revenues this would drive for your business.
“Content is King.” – Bill Gates
Unfortunately, there are so many scam callers and emailers promising to get you to number one in the Google rankings that it has given SEO a bad name and reputation. No one can guarantee a number-one position at Google. If anyone ever tells you they can be very wary. However, it is possible to influence your ranking and increase your ranking exponentially by:
- following the guidance from Google,
- ensuring your website development is built properly,
- that your website is built to the required standards,
- It is full of rich, deep and quality content relevant to your industry, services or products.
You also need to know what people in your target market are searching for. There’s no point in being number one in Google for a keyword no one needs or looks for. Equally, there’s no point in writing aimless content wishing and hoping that you’ll end up at number one just because you write lots of content. It has to be targeted. It has to be of relevance. It has to be of quality. Let’s now take a deeper look into how SEO works and the important role your content and your content marketing strategy play in your overall SEO strategy.
What is SEO and How Does SEO Work in Reality?
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. This is the process of optimising your website to appear as high as you can for your chosen keyword(s) in the search engine rankings. It should not be confused with SEM which stands for Search Engine Marketing. Whilst SEM is similar, this means you are paying for, and optimising your paid marketing efforts to appear at the top of search engines. This is also known as Pay-per-click (PPC).
SEO is the must-have tactic in business today to grow your website traffic and business visibility online. Even if you’re not that bothered about ranking highly, you need to make sure your site is optimised so that your search results show professionally in Google. Having an unprofessionally presented website in the eyes of a search engine is like having a badly designed poster promoting your event. People will just look away and not click on your site.
This is the free traffic you will receive to your website once your website is optimised. It’s how people will find you when they require your information, services or products.
If you don’t think it works, here is a sample of the content OJE Technology was ranking number 1 in Google for in November 2022:
Keyword: can you trust social media
Keyword: ways your website can save you money
Keyword: is technology stressing you out
These are just some of the articles we have got to rank at number 1 in Google based on our keyword strategy around topical subjects – which as you can imagine are driving high traffic to our website. So yes, SEO works. And it doesn’t necessarily take a long time to rank highly either.
How the Internet is Used Helps Explain How SEO Works
The Internet is still a place where we fundamentally look for information. Whilst we now use it for cloud services and entertainment, the primary use of the Internet is to search for information. It is an infomediary source.
We used to do this behind large desktop computers in the days when AOL dominated and Amazon was still just selling books. Today, we can whip out our electronic devices and search for information on anything we want, wherever we want. Why is knowing this important to SEO and how SEO works? The reason is that how we use the internet to find information is fundamental to the core of search engine optimisation.
To put this simply. If you provide high-quality information which is valuable and related to what people on the Internet are searching for, then you will benefit from increased search rankings in all major search engines. Of course, the information needs to be optimised so it can be found and indexed by search engine spiders, but fundamentally, this is the real secret to how SEO works.
It’s not the best-kept secret though because it’s right there in Google’s mission statement when you read between the lines:
“To organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”- Google’s mission statement.
Keep in mind, that there are no shortcuts to ranking high within search engine rankings. It takes focused effort and a little patience, but the rewards are worth it.
When you break down what a search engine’s primary purpose is, it is to provide the most relevant information, as quickly as possible to the end-user when they type in their keywords for searching.
How Search Engine Optimisation Works in the Real World
Let’s say you want to find out some information on how to cook a tasty lasagne.
You go to google.com and type ‘tasty lasagne’. Within seconds you are presented with thousands of answers all related to spaghetti bolognese carbonara and fish and chips.
Surely that’s not how search engines are supposed to work?
No, but if that’s how they worked would any of us use search engines?
It’s why high-quality and relevant content is so key to ranking well. Looking at how SEO works this way, helps us understand how we can rank better in Google. Google is still the best at ranking top-quality content from all over the internet which is why so many people use it and why Google.com is the most visited website in the world each day.
Going back to the example above, here’s what came up for me when searching for the phrase ‘tasty lasagne’ in Google:
Perfect! And you guessed it, I clicked the top link first.
Yet there were over 7,480,000 other results for that search phrase in just 0.44 seconds. But what made me click the top link out of all the others even on the visible page? Well:
- The website domain name was related to food.
- The website had security in the form of https:// installed.
- The SERP (Search Engine Results Page) was written in clear English.
- The image was of a relevant tasty-looking lasagne.
- The recipe had good reviews.
All of this information I processed in a matter of moments before I then clicked on the website.
I had no reason to look further because I had my answer. Google had found me my match.
The average web user is not going to know about all the different ranking factors, they just want to get the information they are looking for as fast as possible.
This is also why Google places so much emphasis on knowing your search phrases and interests so they can personalise the information they present to you (such as targeted adverts). Knowing your interests and search preferences improves your overall experience of finding information on the internet and keeps you coming back for more.
If I was a business selling lasagne, then I would be interested in knowing how many people were looking for such a phrase. By analysing such information we can then learn and provide strategies on how to rank higher based exactly on what people are searching for.
We can also analyse content so that you ensure what you’re writing has all the relevant and unique content that other sites that rank highly for the keyphrase don’t have.
This means that you can learn what content is more valuable for users in a search engine’s eyes such as Google’s.
This does several things. It means you can pick your battles and find out what people are interested in. It also means you don’t waste time trying to rank for a keyword that no one is interested in.
For example, you might be number one in Google for a keyword, but no one ever looks for this keyword so you never get any website traffic despite all your hard work and patience. Equally, you don’t want to be competing against a highly competitive website keyword that you are likely never to rank for either.
So let’s look at how this looks and go back to our example above and examine the keyword ‘tasty lasagne’.
You can see the results below:
You can see here that tasty lasagne is third on the list. The keyword has a difficulty rating of 37 and an average monthly search volume of 10.
The keyword volume is an estimate of the average monthly search volume for that keyword. So you can see that in this example roughly 10 people on average search for that keyword per month.
These averages can change month on month depending on what is ‘trending’ online or what’s happening in the world. For example, a few months ago the average search volume was 30.
The keyword difficulty is the number that shows how difficult it might be to rank for that particular keyword. The higher the number, the more difficult it will be to achieve a high or number one ranking.
Why? Because more websites want to rank highly for this keyword.
Now that I know what the search volumes are and the difficulty scores, a decision can be made as to what keywords are realistically achievable to rank for.
Looking at the keyword analysis table above, I might decide to try and rank well for the top one, which is ‘tasty lasagne recipe’. This would be a harder keyword to rank for, so it might take longer, but, the search volume per month is on average much higher so I would get more visitors.
I could then, choose to optimise my existing content, or create new content, and make it as optimised and valuable as possible so that people find my website on Google for that keyword and click my site, not a competitor.
You might be now thinking well what’s lasagne going to do with my business?
Well, imagine you run a business that offers financial services to clients. By analysing the keywords for your market, you can tailor your website so that you are getting website traffic from people who are looking for financial services.
With the right lead capture in place, this will turn your website visitors into leads whom you can then contact and sign up as clients.
Key SEO Terms to Better Understand How SEO Works
As with anything, some jargon and phrases are used within an industry, and SEO has more than its share. So to make this easier and to help you understand the language of SEO, here are some of the key terms you will hear when someone talks about optimising your website:
Traffic is just another word for website visitors or hits. Google changed the way it monitors this and now calls them sessions which helps display websites’ overall usage. In the past, it used to be hit, but this wasn’t a great metric as people would just keep clicking the website and browsing about how many hits they had when in reality it wasn’t always an accurate indicator.
Of course, you can go viral and get lots of web traffic, but really, you want targeted users who are interested in your product or service.
These are the visitors most likely to engage and ultimately buy from you. Analysing your website traffic and keyword growth over time is a great place to see the impact your SEO strategy is having.
Keywords and Longtail Keywords
Keywords are the words that you enter into the search engine search box. They are generally one word or two words in length.
For example, if I wanted to find out about tennis, I would enter tennis. If I wanted to find out about healthy foods, I could enter healthy foods.
There is a common misconception that if you ‘stuff’ your content full of your chosen keywords you will rank number one.
Whilst many years ago this would have worked, Google has since changed their algorithms and penalised websites that now do this. Longtail keywords are phrases that are three to four words (and longer) in length that describe what you are looking for.
When someone performs a longtail keyword they very often have a high level of knowledge and certainty a good understanding of what they are looking for. For example ‘Nike football boots’ or ‘the best movies of 2021′.
Those are two good examples of longtail keywords. Sometimes longtail keywords are easier to rank for just simply because they are less competitive or are industry-specific such as a particular part name for an aircraft.
This is the information on your website. To rank highly on Google you need lots of relevant content. To rank high means writing text. Many sites have lovely pictures but hardly any text. Search engines need this to know what to rank your website for. Your content needs to be relevant and engaging. For web pages that are your main focus keywords, the text on these pages needs to be over 500 words in length, preferably 1000 words or more.
Content can be also defined as images, video and audio, but text including images (and their alt text) is what Google and search engine spiders are most interested in from a content perspective.
A website’s ranking is its position in the search engine. So if you rank number 1, you are position number 1. Number 8 and you are number 8. It’s important to point out though, that this does not include adword rankings. This is purely a rank for your organic search position when we’re talking from an SEO perspective. If you rank 96, then you have some work to do in optimising your website for that keyword.
Local search results can have an impact on your overall search engine ranking.
When checking how your website is truly ranking, it’s always worth checking Google when in incognito mode in Chrome or private browsing mode in Firefox. This removes all the localised information and user preferences so takes away anything that might be personalising the results based on your location, history or search preferences.
Alt tags stand for the alt attributes. Alt tags are used to describe the image in your content as it loads (or doesn’t load) on your page.
So if you had an article or page relating to fish and chips, your alt tag for at least one of the images, and most likely the featured of the primary image should be fish and chips. Search engines use this alt tag for indexing images in their image indexing.
The bounce rate is the percentage of visits to a website that are bounced off, or left without clicking on any further links.
The higher your bounce rate, the less likely it is that someone will click through from one page to another and the lower you will rank. When someone bounces off your site (even if it’s to another website you might have in your business), it’s a down vote for that site in terms of how Google sees it.
You want users on your website for as long as possible.
A website schema is used to describe the structure of a website and its content. It describes how pages are arranged in a hierarchy and what kind of information each page contains.
The schema also defines the tags that can be used to mark up elements within the content too.
For example, your products on your e-commerce website would be marked up as products, but your blog content’s schema would be marked as articles. It helps search engines understand the content they are indexing.
Meta Data and Description
Metadata is the descriptive information about your page or article. Typically known as the meta description.
This is the snippet of text which shows up on the search engine results page (SERP). It plays an important role in people finding your information and website.
It typically sits under the SEO title or page header. Search engines place less emphasis on this now as they focus more on deep-quality content, It still plays a vital role when people first analyse the results.
Inbound, Outbound and Back Links
Links are a key feature of SEO. After all, the “Inter-net” is a huge interconnected network made up of connections between websites, or links. The link structure and how links relate to your website play a large role in your website ranking.
An inbound link (or internal link) is a link that links to another page on your website.
An outbound link (or external link) links to an external website.
A backlink is a reciprocal link between your website and another one.
Backlinks use domain and website rank to determine how relevant your website is on a subject matter overall. For example, if you sell lighting and all your backlinks link to premier league football clubs, it’s not very relevant to the lighting industry as a whole.
The links won’t help people find out more about what they are looking for. You will often see guest bloggers posting on other websites with a link back to their websites.
This way they are giving value to the other website’s content, and achieving a backlink to their website to help their external ranking. They are providing guest posts.
The traffic you would then get from this guest post to your website is known as link juice. So if a blog post received a lot of traffic, then your link juice from that source would be high.
Imagine you publish a post in a national newspaper and your guest post then attracts over ten thousand clicks to your site, this would be very high link juice, or what’s known as high traffic.
This is why well-placed, targeted guest posts can be so effective. A single post can change your online credibility in a big way and your marketing too. The same goes for posting anything in online communities too with a link to your article. It all creates social signals.
An old SEO technique used to focus solely on how many backlinks you had. So people would go out and buy domain names with their chosen keywords, create small sites and then link to them.
Nowadays it’s much more important to have one, authoritative website which is rich with content about your chosen area of expertise.
Header and Title Tags
Header tags and title tags are key building blocks for website pages and content. Generally, you would use Header 1 (H1), Header 2 (H2), Header 3 (H3). Sometimes you might take your content subheading right down to Header 6 (H6) but it’s not as common.
Title tags are the ones that are the title of your page or website. These play a crucial role in how your content is indexed in search engines. You will often see this around content <h1>Title </h1> which tells the search engines that the word Title is a header 1 tag.
SERP stands for Search Engine Results Page.
This is the page that shows up when you have performed your search in a search engine and lists all your answers. SERP can play an important role when evaluating competitor websites and also getting people to click on your website.
This is why page titles and meta descriptions play an important role in terms of the initial impression of your website. They also influence how relevant your content is to the chosen keyword for the page or article.
A search engine index is the collection or database of all the information which has been crawled by robots and spiders.
When we perform a search, this is what the algorithm is comparing against and producing the results against. As you’d expect, these indexes are constantly being updated to better reflect the relevance of the information held within them.
Robots.txt and Spiders
Robots. text and search engine spiders (also known as crawlers) in SEO terms are what work together in indexing your website.
In Google, it’s the robots.txt file that should be in your website’s root directory which tells search engine spiders what to index for your site.
The web spiders are what ascertain what should be included and where it should be included in the search engine results.
You can also inform search engines such as Google to crawl your website faster, for example, if you have done a large update or added a lot more content recently. This is done using a sitemap.
Your sitemap is the overall index of your website. You submit this to the search engines and they use this to see what content has been added or how the website structure has changed.
The sitemap will list every page and content post on your website including important data. This is how your website informs search engines of changes automatically when you make updates.
Analytics is part of the important reporting process in SEO.
Google Analytics provides a wealth of information on how many users your site gets, how people are finding your website, what devices they are using, which pages they are leaving your website, the busiest times of day that your website gets visited and loads more information.
You can spend weeks in there siphoning through the information. You need analytics to assess your website’s performance. Without it, you won’t know how many website visitors you are getting.
How to Appear at the top of Google
Believe it or not, there is more than one way to appear at the top of Google and other search engines. You can do this organically (SEO), or you can do this via paid search where you pay to appear in the AdWords part of the Google results (SEM). See if you can spot the difference between the two in these 5 ways below:
These appear with no ad signs on them and the traffic you receive depends on the position of the organic result that your site ranks at, such as position 1 or position 5 for example. In Google, the higher your site ranks, the greater the reward and traffic you will receive if that keyword has a high volume per month.
Persistence and pushing as hard as you can for keywords to get to number one on the list will ensure you increase your traffic over time ‘organically. If you rank number one in Google, on average you will receive 38% of the clicks than you would for position two in Google (18%).
This can be expensive, but the simplest way to explain it is that you are paying for advertising space above the organic traffic. You will pay different rates based on where you wish to show up in the list and the value placed on the keyword you wish to rank for. You only pay if someone clicks on the link. If you get many thousands of clicks you can get massively increased traffic, but this also means you are paying out more and it doesn’t always mean you are getting your desired customers.
These are short pieces of text which show above organic search results. They often show up when a question is being answered and they are defined as position 0. Here’s an example for the phrase document verification:
Google Local (Map Listings)
Here you can list your business on the side of the Google result and appear in the knowledge panel as a local result. Below, is an example of the phrase ‘tennis racquets’.
Use Other People’s Websites
Appearing on third-party websites can also get you noticed. This can happen when you write articles or posts on other websites which are then producing content on your behalf from other domain names.
You can also perform a link back to your website from the article or simply appear on the website as a sponsor for example. It’s still just a link forming a reciprocal backlink.
In the example below, many of these official sponsors have a page dedicated to rugby and sponsoring the Premiership Rugby League.
This means that they come up in search rankings relating to rugby even though their products have nothing to do with rugby.
Because they are linked reciprocally to the Lions Rugby website which has a high, credible rating and ranking, their credibility rises in search engine estimations.
None of those are spammy links but highly credible websites and well-known brands with high website traffic:
How Google Ranks Websites, the Foundations of How SEO Works
A simple view of SEO and increasing your site ranking is to assume that you need to show Google that your website deserves to be at the top of Google. As you now know, Google’s reputation is based upon providing the right information, to the right people relating to the right keywords they have entered.
No single person knows the exact algorithms which Google follows to rank websites, that’s why no one can ever tell you that they can get you to number one! If they do they are lying and this is something you often see promised in spam emails.
Despite this, it is generally accepted that there are 3 key pillars to Google’s site ranking algorithm. These are:
This is all about how relevant your website and content are to the phrases being searched for.
Google is dominant today because it provides the most relevant information with the fastest online. This means your content (words in blogs and pages), and your images used (the alt tags, descriptions, titles etc), are all used to judge the relevance of your website to a search topic.
If you have little, outdated and inconsistent content relating to your keywords, you will never rise up the rankings. If the words you want to rank for aren’t being used, then Google cannot determine your relevance.
It is also worth mentioning that Google also interprets how people interact with your website. If they wanted to buy a new ergonomic chair, they would type in ‘ergonomic chairs’. This would produce a SERP (search engine results page).
Google uses this as part of a user’s judgement in terms of what is most relevant to the search. So if a user consistently jumps off (bounces) your site, this will also impact your ranking as they are not staying long enough, therefore do not value the content you have on offer. For relevance, Google has a positive feedback loop built-in which is why website content plays such a crucial role in a website’s ranking.
The other method Google uses is to assess the authority of the site, or another way of looking at it is the popularity of the site. Imagine recommending an ergonomic chair to a friend and then someone else recommends the chair to someone else, who then also recommends the chair to someone else and so on …
Google uses a similar approach by assessing those you link to and those who link back to you (known as a backlink). This helps build what is known as a website’s page rank. This is essentially the metric for determining how authoritative a website is in the grand scheme of things.
It’s not just about the links you link to, who links back to you, or the total number of links, it’s also about the value of these links and what they have to offer.
If you link to sites with a more favourable page rank/credibility, you will be rewarded and so will they. As you build your page rank, so theirs increases too.
It is worth noting also that each page with its page link is treated individually. If your link exists on a page with all sorts of other links, that value will be shared. If you are on their website and you are the only link, your value to them and your website increases.
The bigger the website, the greater opportunity you have to increase your page rank. This is again why it is so important to have a properly structured website with appropriate content schemas as you really need to build up an authoritative website from one single domain.
Trust (Quality of the Build)
Trust is another key factor in Google’s ranking.
Image Google presented to users looking for insecure information websites, full of spam, rubbish links and slow to load. It wouldn’t take long before people stopped using Google.
Therefore, the quality of the website is also considered. This is why they also consider what other websites link to the site itself. If unreputable websites link back to a website, chances are something is up.
This is why for example, a website domain name and SSL certificates play a crucial role in how Google establishes trust online. It’s a metric of ranking well. It’s important for many reasons to have a high-quality website built and optimised for organic search. If you go looking for HSBC bank and yet the link you click takes you through to a copy-cat fraud website and you lose your money, Google’s reputation is lost.
It’s an interesting paradox because whilst Google needs to trust the websites it ranks highly, they are too constantly seeking our trust in them so that we keep using their services.
Tips On How Your Website Can Rank Higher in Search Engines
Improving the quality of your website to improve ranking performance is a must for increasing SEO. It will also assist your digital marketing efforts greatly.
As a minimum, the following areas of your website should be addressed which will provide you with at least a small boost in your SEO ranking without speaking to SEO experts
Increasing Your Website Content is How SEO Works Out Your Relevance
Websites with not much content will not rank well or high.
This means low word counts, poor writing, and poor images. Increasing and improving existing content is one way to almost fly up the rankings especially if the site is a long way down the list.
Very often people get nervous about doing this and don’t want to diminish their brand or state that it’s incomplete.
Google doesn’t care. It wants to see the information. You can always add and improve the content in the future and reap the benefits again then! Google rewards websites with a higher ranking when they are deemed to know what they are talking about by ‘proving’ themselves to Google.
Fixing Broken Links and 404 Errors
If you clicked on a page and found that it went nowhere from Google’s SERP you wouldn’t be very happy.
For this reason, it’s important to check that all the links go to where they need to go. This is why, if you ever change a domain name all links need to be repointed with a 301 redirect to ensure Google knows the location of the new content.
If you discover you have these problems, it’s not all bad news, because once they are fixed you will reveal an increase in your ranking soon enough.
Keeping a Simple Link Structure
Your website link structure should be simple and easy to, with the URLs working from natural, human language. This makes it easier for search engines to index your website.
www.ojetech.com/services/seo-services is much more user-friendly than www.ojetech.com/0145/24072021/07/services. The second link is not easy to read nor is it easy to understand the context of the website page. The menu structure and URL wording play a crucial role in your website’s navigation and user experience and Google recognises this too. Keep it simple, and keep clicks as low as possible to your key content.
Ensuring Mobile Friendliness
Your site must be ‘responsive’. This means that it must load cleanly on a mobile and tablet device. It’s a given and standard these days. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, then you need to ensure you plan for it to be. 48% of all internet searches is now done by mobile phone and Google penalises any site if they are not mobile-friendly or responsive.
Making Sure Your Website is Technically ‘Optimised’
You must ensure that your images are compressed and that your website is ‘cached’ as a bare minimum to ensure your site remains fast.
You should also review hosting if your site begins to get sluggish, but this is only relevant slightly so not the first port of call. You should also ensure your site has an SSL certificate and ensure it works from https:// as this is another major ranking factor used by Google to assess the quality of your website.
How SEO Works – Content is King
There is a certain irony in the computing world, that Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft (not Google), in 1996 predicted that the future of computing would be that “Content was King”. Microsoft lagged well behind and came late to the game in terms of its search engine called Bing. His comment and prediction today ring more true than ever.
Content is everywhere and yet it’s Google that leads the way in providing the most relevant search results, which is why so many people continue to use it. Google performs on average over 5.6 billion searches a day.
Content plays a major role in search engine ranking and optimisation. Google cannot classify a website as worthy unless it can determine the content is relevant to the searches being performed. This means you must ensure your website content is geared towards what people are searching for online.
What this means is that each page (including blog posts) needs to be of high-quality content and authoritative.
This means if you have a services page that lists your services you also need a whole dedicated page for each of those services. E.g. /services to then /service1 /service2 /service3 etc. These pages we recommend should have at least 500 words of relevant content on them.
This can be hard to do but is essential to get a ranking in Google for your keywords. It’s difficult to write a lot of content about something which sometimes can be very dry. Your blog posts also need to be the same, with a minimum of 500 words but aim for 1000+ words for your cornerstone (most important) content.
The content you generate also needs to be optimised within the website itself.
So whilst the content is key, this may also need to be optimised to align with your keywords and to ensure Google interprets this content properly.
In tracking this content, you can then see how Google interprets this over time and improve accordingly. This way you get a return on investment on the articles you write because they are never finished. You can keep them updated in the future recirculate them and keep on iteratively improving them and providing value.
We spend time optimising content to ensure it meets the standards set out by Google, but the hardest part is getting to write in the first place.
However, you will reap the rewards from organic search results. We also work on readability to ensure that Google ranks your content higher in relevance to the users searching for it.
Never Duplicate Other People’s Website Content
Duplicating content from someone else’s website is not good form and is a waste of time.
Google values unique content and unique pages. Websites that rely on duplicate content tend to not rank well. Duplicate content will appear throughout your website ie your footer, which Google will not directly penalise you for, but copying paragraphs directly from other websites they most certainly will not. You will be penalised.
This is why it’s never good practice or wise to just copy and paste news articles into your blog or news feed thinking it will benefit your ranking. It won’t, because the content is not unique.
Google needs to differentiate your site from others. If it sees thousands of sites using the same header names and the same content, your site has no hope because you will likely have a lower page rank.
You need to ensure your content is unique and meets the standards required by Google.
You can also develop knowledgebases, FAQs, videos and all sorts to increase your content, but the beauty of a written article is that it can be reused in mailshots, social media posts and general email communications.
It can fire up your marketing copy. You can also then reuse your content in more ways than you realise and continue to improve on it all the time. The hardest part is generating it in the first place.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the practice of optimising a website or web page to rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs) for specific search queries. SEO works by improving the relevance and authority of a website or web page to the search engine’s algorithm.
Several factors search engines consider when determining the relevance and authority of a website or web page, including:
- Content: Search engines look for high-quality, relevant, and informative content on a website or web page. This includes both the text content and the multimedia content such as images, videos, and audio.
- Keywords: Search engines use keywords to understand what a website or web page is about. SEO involves optimizing content and metadata with relevant keywords that people use when searching for information.
- Backlinks: Search engines consider the quality and quantity of backlinks (links from other websites to your website) as a measure of the authority and credibility of your website or web page.
- User experience: Search engines take into account user experience signals such as page load speed, mobile responsiveness, and engagement metrics (e.g. time on site, bounce rate) to determine the relevance and value of a website or web page.
- Technical optimization: SEO also involves technical optimizations such as optimizing metadata, implementing structured data, and improving site architecture and navigation to ensure that search engines can crawl and index a website or web page easily.
By optimising a website or web page with these factors in mind, SEO can improve the visibility and ranking of a website or web page in the search engine results pages, resulting in more traffic, leads, and conversions for businesses and organizations.
Given the length of the article on this topic, it just goes to show you how much work goes into SEO. The content in this article relating to how SEO works is by no means the be-all and end of what you have to do, but it highlights the building blocks and unearths of some of the mysteries of what is going on behind the scenes at Google and other search engines.
You can see from this, however, that content is one of the key requirements for rising up the rankings. It should come as no surprise that whilst Google leads the way as being the best search engine, it is also the world’s most popular website with the most visits per day.
People focus so much of their time on website design, but it’s the content that plays a crucial role when determining how well your website will rank. This will help improve your online marketing efforts support your social media campaigns too and increase trust in your social media channels.
There is a sense of irony to this because the most visited website in the world is google.com and yet all it has is a search box and a few images which change now and again. But we all know Google is our door to the Internet and where our marketing results can be greatly improved by optimising our websites with SEO.
- SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation and is different to SEM which stands for Search Engine Marketing.
- The internet is fundamentally an infomediary source – we use it to find information first and foremost and providing further optimised content about your products and services can enhance your sales and marketing online.
- Providing good quality, deep and relevant content is key to SEO success today.
- Keywords need to be researched and analysed to ensure you are ranking for content people are searching for.
- There is more than one way to show up at the top of Google.
- There are 3 pillars to Goole’s site ranking algorithm which are relevance, authority and trust.
- Long-form, quality content is a must to rank highly in Google today.
To help with your SEO, we always recommend creating a content calendar to keep your content current, up to date and fresh. It means you can align your digital marketing across all marketing in your business.
Have a read-through of our article “Why Building a Content Calendar is a Great Idea and Why it Works” for more information.
If you have any questions about this article or would like us to review your website to see where you can rank higher on Google, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch.