What is SEO?

Liam Fallen

Search Engine Optimisation is one of the essential tools to have in your marketing tool belt.

It’s not an easy thing to master, but it’s worth the time and effort because SEO helps you rank higher on search engines like Google and Bing.

If that sounds complicated or intimidating, don’t worry!

This post will give you a basic introduction to the topic so that you can learn more about SEO for yourself.

Let’s get started!

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation – but what does this mean?

The phrase “search engine optimisation” may seem simple at first glance: add some keywords here and there, and boom – done!

But in reality, it takes hard work and know-how to increase rankings on search engines.

What is SEO: An Introduction to Search Engine Optimisation for Beginners

In this article, we’ll provide a basic introduction to SEO and its importance in today’s digital world.

How does it work?

Search engine optimisation (SEO) increases website rankings by making changes that make content more likely to appear near or at the top of search results pages on Google, called SERPs if all goes well!

The trickiest part about optimising your site may just come down to removing barriers for your users.

When was SEO first used, and how has it changed?

Since the beginning of Google crawls in 1998, SEO has been around only 24 million websites.

It’s grown to a staggering over 310,000 billion and counting!

However, it is more complex now than it was before as search engines have developed faster ways for spiders (crawlers) to crawl and understand a page.

For example, Googlebot is constantly improving how it analyses pages and gathers data to enhance search results.

What are some common misconceptions surrounding SEO?

SEO is not magic.

There’s also no way to 100% guarantee an SEO campaign outcome; if that were possible, everyone would rank first.

Instead, it’s about making the proper optimisations and giving your website every opportunity to improve its positions in search results.

SEO requires time, effort & patience for any website that wants to grow its organic traffic.

There is no set way to optimise a website; it depends on several variables, including industry, competitors and much more.

It’s never a one size fits all approach.

What does it take to create an effective content strategy?

A Content Strategy should outline what you’re trying to convey with each piece of information posted online.

It will ultimately help you achieve your desired results like increased traffic and conversions.

Creating and adding value around specific topics related to your expertise is also a great way to reach a wider audience.

It would be best to focus every content strategy on providing as much value to your users as possible.

Before publishing any new content, one way to do this is to ask yourself what value it provides to your users?

If it were the only page on your website, would it serve a clear purpose?

Content is an integral part of growing your online presence.

Is SEO a long term marketing strategy, or can I achieve results pretty fast?

The answer is yes and no.

Yes, SEO can produce quick results like some traffic in the short term, but it takes a long time to see any significant rankings on major search engines.

For example, if you’re targeting low competition keywords with little traffic – you can expect to receive some small results in the short term.

It will also depend on the tactics used and how competitive the industry, including competing websites.

At the beginning of any campaign, it’s good to perform initial keyword research to find achievable keywords to target.

Why is SEO important for marketing?

Search engine optimisation, or SEO for short, is an integral part of marketing because a website’s visibility on search engines such as Google and Bing can directly influence its success.

High traffic leads to more conversions (sales/signups/leads), increasing the site’s chances of being profitable!

Agencies who have been using content marketing online should tell you what works well & what’s not working.

Since their strategy has had plenty of time to collect data over time, it will enable them to make better-informed decisions about how best to implement changes using data to predict impact.

How can I learn SEO?

You can learn SEO by reading blogs and other articles like this one.

There are also free courses that you can complete:

A good place for beginners is Google’s free resources on the subject of search engine optimisation.

The above resources have a wealth of information, including videos that can teach you about getting started.

You can find many more beginner guides through searching Google.

What does local search mean in SEO?

Local search is a type of SEO that focuses on promoting websites relevant to local communities.

Local SEO works in several different ways, but ultimately, you want to ensure you optimise your website to rank for local keywords.

One common strategy involves optimising a website’s titles, content and descriptions, to include specific search terms made in your local area.

Be sure not to overdo it, though.

You should always include your keywords naturally to assist users in finding related and relevant information.

What does image search mean in SEO?

Image search is a type of SEO that focuses on promoting websites using relevant and optimised images.

An often overlooked part of SEO is optimising images to enable search engines to understand better what it represents.

If your images are well optimised, they could show higher in Google image search results and lead to increased organic traffic.

One common strategy for doing so would involve optimising ALT tags for images and clearly explaining what the image represents.

For example, if you upload an image of a car, you can describe the make and model inside the ALT tag.

Using an ALT tag ensures that your images are accessible if the image hasn’t loaded.

What does video search mean in SEO?

Video search is a type of SEO that focuses on promoting websites relevant to videos.

One common strategy is to optimise the content around videos to include keywords you intend to rank for in search results.

This strategy includes optimising the title and having a transcript below the video.

What does voice search mean in SEO?

Voice search is a type of SEO that involves optimising your website for voice commands.

Great content can help here, and answering questions inside your content related to your website and industry is a great idea.

It would be best if you focused on conversational keywords too.

What is Technical SEO, and how is it different to standard SEO?

Technical SEO is the process of making sure that your website meets Google’s webmaster guidelines.

These guidelines include ensuring it uses appropriate metadata, including descriptions, title, headings etc.

A Technical SEO consultant will also ensure that search engines can crawl and index content correctly.

It also involves checking for any 404 errors or broken links on a website, preventing page rankings from increasing and finding broken redirects.

Optimising the technical aspects of a website, like performance, can also improve user experience, which is essential.

How can I use search engine optimisation to rank higher on search engines?

The best way to rank higher on search engines is to create original content, in-depth articles and engage with your audience.

The best content attracts users, increases shares and promotes your products or services.

Having high-quality content to work with will make a considerable contribution to your overall SEO strategy‘s success.

Be sure also when using keywords throughout any post, include them naturally but not too often.

There is no set amount of times you should include your keywords in a particular piece of content.

Keep it natural and helpful for your users.

Search engines want to provide the best user experience possible; ensuring users get the very best information related to their query is paramount.

Search engines don’t want users to leave having not found the information they needed.

What is organic traffic, and why is that important for a website?

Organic traffic is the number of visitors to a site who find it via search engines.

It’s important because if people view your website without clicking on an ad, you could say that’s a free click.

If you’ve invested in a marketing campaign and begin receiving organic traffic, it’s more of an ROI than a free click.

Investing in a successful digital marketing strategy can eventually pay for itself over time, providing that you have seen substantial growth in organic traffic.

Your users should be front and centre of any decision you make in SEO.

Creating high-quality content that serves your users’ specific needs will give you an excellent foundation for your SEO strategy.

Another part of SEO is link building.

You can build links by networking, creating clever PR campaigns, or even your readers might like your content enough to mention it on their site.

There are also resources like HARO (help a reporter out).

HARO is a place where journalists request sources for content; by answering these queries, you can land yourself a mention and link inside their article.

What is the best way to learn search engine optimisation?

The best way is to learn by doing.

You can read all of the resources available on the internet, but you will only learn how to apply what you’ve learned by doing it yourself.

Create a blog.

Creating a blog and publishing content allows you to practice optimisation techniques.

You can also use that blog to post what you’ve learned that day or week.

Sometimes writing down what you’ve learned will assist you in better absorbing the information.

You can practice every part of SEO, from keyword research to optimising your META data.

Once you begin optimising your blog, start targeting and tracking the keywords to see if you can spot new opportunities to optimise your website.

About Liam Fallen

Liam Fallen is a Google, SEMrush and MOZ certified Technical SEO Consultant with 7+ years of experience in development and marketing which he combines to improve the performance and user experience of his clients' websites like Monday.com, LeoVegas UK brands and SurferSEO.

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