SEO is an acronym for Search Engine Optimization. SEO’s history dates back to the 90s when the search engines first appeared. In 2020, it’s now a critical marketing tool and an ever-growing field. It is commonly referred to as a strategy, however, at the most basic level it is simply setting yourself up to be recognized by any search engine as relevant to a specific search.
What is a Search Engine?
A search engine is “a program that searches for and identifies items in a database that correspond to keywords or characters specified by the user used especially for finding particular sites on the World Wide Web.” as defined by the Google Dictionary.
Google is an example of a search engine. And so is YouTube!
Wherever there’s a search bar and the user receives relevant information is considered a search engine. The results you get are always based on the most relevant content to your search. This is where optimization comes into play.
In order for search engines to produce a list of the most relevant results for any search, they must search through their own database and determine which items are relevant. They do this by running the searched term through titles, paragraphs, image descriptions, essentially anywhere and everything that can be named.
The practice of optimizing doesn’t have to be complicated and actually doesn’t require a confusing or unique strategy to succeed. By simply not making any mistakes, you’re already more than halfway there. Optimizing just means making it the best you can, and having your website in a position to be picked the most often. This means avoiding uploading any images named “capture.png” or “download.jpg”. Also avoiding leaving any page titles blank, and/or using the heading 5 tags for all of a page’s headings.
Let’s say you own an online business for dog food. When a user goes onto Google and searches for ‘Dog Food’, Google then searches through every website looking to create a list of the most relevant websites for that user. If the title of your website doesn’t include ‘dog food’, then you’re most likely already out of the race, and this is because your website title isn’t optimized for this search term. After website titles, Google is now going to look through your website’s subpages, and see how many of those include ‘dog food’ as well. Then Google will index how many of your entire website’s headings include ‘dog food’ giving more importance to H1 than H5. Long story short, every piece of content, media, and item on your website needs to be named correctly and formatted correctly to look it’s best so that Google has no problem ranking your website for the user’s searching for your keywords.
Why is SEO Important?
Optimizing your website is important because organic search (ranking on search engines based on keywords and not from paid ads) accounts for 73% of all website traffic on average.
Additionally, 71% of all website clicks are on Google’s first page and has been as high as 92% in recent years.
This shows how crucial it is to rank on Google’s first page of results, which is usually in the top 10. Of course, this isn’t easy to do. Most keywords you want to rank for, a lot of other businesses also want to rank for. If you want to beat out the competition for those top 10 positions, you have to make sure your website is not only flawless but that your website is also a proven relevant website for the keyword. This is where backlinks, traffic, and content marketing will give you an edge on your competitors. If other reputable websites are linking to your website, it tells Google that your website is also reputable, and that will help you climb the rankings. The same goes for traffic! The more traffic your website gets, the more helpful Google views your site to be.
Every search is like a new competition. Your website always needs to be as perfect as possible to catch the attention of search engines every time, to be chosen for a high ranking. If you’re below the top 10 rankings, you’re missing out on traffic and leads.
How Difficult is SEO?
Search engines including Google, Bing, Yahoo! and other index websites are designed to construct an order based on various ranking algorithms. Can we find these algorithms? Yes and no. Google uses over 200 criteria in its ranking. Although though we know many of them: quality content, backlinks or technical items like website pace, many of them are kept as a secret.
Of course, you don’t need to know all the criteria for your website to rate. There are three critical aspects to understanding what the SEO is all about: technical stuff behind the website (technical and on-page SEO, the content of your website, finally quality backlinks increasing the authority of your website – the last aspect to make your SEO.
Are There Different Types of SEO?
- Black Hat SEO
Black hat SEO is a compilation of unethical activities in the search engine results page to boost website rankings. They are designed to impact search engines, without taking into account the human element.
Black hat SEO will get you to the top of the SERP in a short time but search engines would most likely sooner or later penalize and ban the website.
2. White Hat SEO
White hat SEO Is an ethical set of techniques that adhere to guidelines and rules. The basic parts of SEO White Hat are: Consistency and relevant content overall website optimization link building White Hat SEO is a long-term strategy geared towards enhancing user experience. In general, terms, being a good guy in the SEO environment is perceived to be the best path.
There’s also, a concept called the Grey hat SEO, a strategy as contrasted with the Black hat techniques, you may riskless. Grey hat tactics aren’t specifically specified by Google so you can gain thousands of website visitors a day later while not being penalized or losing any of your rankings. However, with that being said you don’t want to make Google your enemy, in general. So its best to adhere to White hat techniques.
On-Page SEO vs. Off-page SEO
There are two broader SEO categories: on-page SEO and off-page SEO.
On-page SEO includes all ranking criteria for Google that they assess by looking directly at the website, you are attempting to optimize, such as the headlines, content, and page layout.
Off-page SEO applies to all factors that Google looks at, which are not in your own hands solely. We rely on other outlets, such as social networks, other blogs inside your field, and the searcher’s personal history. They’re different but to do well with SEO you need to get them right.
How Will SEO Help Grow Your Business?
Improving your SEO results in users finding your website when they search for terms related to your business. The increase in traffic will be exponential because the more visitors your website gets, the more search engines see your website is reputable. This will, of course, increase your leads which leads to an increase in revenue. If your website isn’t optimized, you’re simply missing out on traffic and leads, which is not the way to grow your business. Make sure to make SEO the main focus for your marketing team and to have regular checks to ensure everything is set up the way you want it to be. Google and YouTube can’t read your mind, so make your website and channel obvious as to what they’re relevant towards and begin your journey to the top of the rankings!
Where Does Waves Digital Canada Come In?
At Waves Digital, we offer an SEO package that includes website analysis, keyword research and planning, and quarterly reports packed with info and recommendations to improve your SEO. We’ll identify aspects of your website that need tweaking, fixing, and rebuilding to be optimized, as well as plans and strategies to compete with keywords of your choice. And our reports? They’ll give you an update on where you’re at right now, the progress you’ve made, and recommendations on how to continue to improve.
There is a lot of different aspects that affect your SEO and depending on what you’re looking to be ranking for, there are likely changes you need to make to get your business in a position to rank for those terms. We simply help you identify those changes and help implement them to get your website or channel on track to climb up the rankings.