Here, we’ll go through the fundamentals of search engine optimization(SEO basics 2021), a subject that everyone in your company should at the very least be aware of, if not have a good technical understanding of.
Here, we’ll go through SEO Basics, a subject that everyone in your company should at the very least be aware of, if not have a good technical understanding.
What is SEO?
Simply put, SEO is the umbrella word for all of the techniques you might employ to ensure that your website and its content appear in search engine results pages (SERPs).
The tactics range from technical procedures you can use behind the scenes on your website (we call this “on-page SEO”) to all of the promotional “off-page” strategies you may employ to improve your site’s visibility (link-building, social media marketing).
When we talk about visibility in this post, we mean how high up on the SERP your website appears for specific search words in the ‘organic’ results. Organic results are those that display on the website without being paid for, rather than in the paid-for areas.
Paid search accounts for a significant portion of search engine marketing. More information on this can be found in our recent beginner’s guide to paid search and PPC
Why do you need SEO?
Search engines will index your site more quickly and simply if you create a robust site architecture and provide obvious navigation. More importantly, this will give visitors a positive impression of your site and encourage them to return. It’s worth noting that Google is becoming increasingly concerned with user experience.
The percentage of traffic delivered to your website by search engines is significant, and it is possibly the clearest evidence of the importance of SEO.
According to Conductor, organic search accounts for 64% of all web traffic, compared to 2% from social, 6% from paid search, 13% from direct, and 15% from other referral sources in 2014.
This corresponds to our own data, which shows that organic traffic accounts for roughly 70-75 percent of SEW traffic.
In 2015, it was shown that Google accounts for more than 90% of all organic search traffic in the world. Obviously, you’ll need a significant presence in Google’s search results, but how strong?
According to this data from Advanced Web Ranking (which I’ve mentioned before when talking about how to dominate Google), the top five results account for 67.60 percent of all clicks on the first SERP, while the results from six to ten account for only 3.73 percent.
As a result, it’s critical that your website appears in the top five search results.
What strategy will you use to accomplish this? With the following suggestions, which I’ve divided into two categories: what search engines want and… drum roll… what they don’t want.
SEO basics 2021:
What are search engines looking for?
Whether it’s a simple answer to the question “how old is Ryan Gosling?” or a complex answer to the question “how old is Ryan Gosling?” search engines strive to offer the most relevant answers to a searcher’s query. (which Google would most likely answer without requiring you to leave the SERP) to more complex inquiries like “what is the best steak restaurant near me?”
The way search engines deliver these results is up to their own internal algorithms, which we’ll probably never fully understand, but there are a few things you can be sure will impact them, and they’re all based on relevancy… For example, the location of a searcher, their search history, the time of day/year, and so on.
2. The quality of your content
Do you routinely publish popular and well-produced articles, films, or other sorts of media that are helpful and useful? Do you write for real people rather than for the search engine? You should, in fact.
According to new study from Search metrics on ranking criteria, Google is shifting away from employing keywords based on popular search queries to build content and toward longer-form material that understands a visitor’s intent as a whole.
Essentially, forget about keywords and concentrate on the user experience.
3. User experience
There are numerous SEO advantages to offering the finest user experience possible. You’ll need a site that’s easy to navigate and search, with useful internal connections and related information. All of the things that keep people coming back to your website and wanting to learn more.
4. Site speed
For search engines, the speed with which your site’s load is increasingly becoming a differentiator. Google may start labelling results that are hosted on Accelerated Mobile Page (AMP) in the near future, making 2016 the year of the ‘mobilegeddon.’ In relation to that…
5. Cross-device compatibility
Is your website and its content compatible with any screen size or device? Keep in mind that Google has indicated that responsive design is the best way to optimise for mobile.
6. Internal linking
We’ve discussed the advantages of having clear and easy-to-use navigation on your site, but there’s another practise that editors and authors can utilise when posting articles to assist shift traffic throughout the site and potentially increase Google trust signals: internal linking. (You’ll notice what we did there.)
Internal connection has a number of benefits:
- It gives your viewers more reading material to choose from. As long as they’re relevant and the anchor language is apparent (the clickable highlighted words in any give link). This may assist in lowering your bounce rates.
- It aids in the improvement of your ranking for specific keywords. We can start linking to this article from other blogs using variations of similar anchor text if we want it to rank for the term ‘SEO basics 2021.’ This informs Google that this article is relevant to individuals looking for “SEO basics 2021.” Some experts advise that you modify your anchor text when linking to the same website because Google may see several identical usage as suspicious.
- It aids Google’s crawling and indexing of your website. The more Google bots that are sent out to gather new information on your site scan your internal links, the more they will understand how useful and trustworthy your content is.
A website that is trusted by its users, the industry in which it works, other websites, and search engines is known as an authority website. A link from an authoritative website is traditionally considered extremely important because it is regarded as a vote of trust. The more of them you have and the higher quality content you publish, the more probable it is that your own website will become an authority as well.
However, according to the aforementioned Search metrics study, year-over-year correlations between backlinks and ranks are dropping, suggesting that ‘links’ may not be as vital to SEO as we once thought.
8. Meta descriptions and title tags
Although having a meta description will not necessarily boost your SERP rating, it is something you should consider using before publishing an article because it can raise the likelihood of a searcher clicking on your result.
The meta description is a short paragraph of text that displays in search results beneath your page’s URL; it’s also something you should have full control over in your CMS.
Here’s how to do it with WordPress:
Write simply and quickly (around 160 characters is ideal), and make sure it’s relevant to your headline and the article’s content.
Search engines and visitors utilise title tags to tell them what your site is about in the most concise and accurate way possible. On search engine results (if the query contains certain keywords), as well as in your browser tab and when sharing your site externally, the keywords in your title tag are highlighted.
In the <head> section of your website’s HTML, you can write your own title tag:
You should include your own brand name as well as a few appropriate keywords that describe the page. However, just use relevant keywords, and the most important thing to remember is that, while formatting for search engines, you should write for humans as well.
9. Schema markup
By including Schema markup in the HTML of your pages, you can improve the appearance of your search results. This can help turn your search results into a rich media playground, complete with star ratings, customer ratings, photos, and other useful information…
Most search engines, including Google, embrace Schema as a markup language, and it’s relatively simple to utilize.
10. Properly tagged images
Many people forget to include the alt property when uploading images to their content, but it’s important to remember because Google can’t see your images, but it can see the alt text.
It will boost the likelihood of your photographs appearing in Google Image search if you describe your image as correctly as possible in the alt text.
It will also make your site more accessible to folks who use ‘screen reader’ software.
MUST READ: Easy guide to understand Inbound marketing.
11. Evergreen content
Why not produce more evergreen material instead of bombarding the internet with a plague of “quick win” news items that provide no insight?
More intelligent, useful, and practical-advice articles can result in significant long-term gains in terms of driving traffic and occupying prominent SERP rankings.
12. Domain names
Instead of subdomains (searchenginewatch.category.seo.com), you should utilise subdirectory root domains (searchenginewatch.com/category/seo). This is preferable for your overall site layout.
Avoid hyphens (search-engine-watch.com) and alternative top-level domain names (.biz,.name,.info) because they are deemed spammy.
Having a ‘keyword rich’ domain name may cause Google to scrutinise you more closely. Google has “de-prioritized sites with keyword-rich domains that aren’t otherwise high-quality,” according to Moz. Although having a term in your domain can be useful, it can also lead to increased scrutiny and a possible negative ranking effect from search engines—so proceed with caution.”
You should also ensure that if you operate a site without the www. prefix, visitors who type www.example.com are forwarded to your site. If this doesn’t happen, Google may presume they are two separate sites, and your visibility may suffer as a result.
13. Headlines and permalinks
To achieve complete visibility in SERPs, your content headers should be under 55 characters. Make them as succinct, appealing, and descriptive as possible (this is often an impossible balance). Simply avoid clickbait headlines and don’t make promises that the content can’t keep.
The permalink (or URL), which you can usually change in your CMS once it’s been set automatically, doesn’t have to exactly match the headline. According to Google, you can use three to four keywords, with the most significant keywords appearing first.
Don’t disable your commenting system. Having a healthy community of regular commenters engaged in debate under your posts demonstrates that readers are interested enough in your material to add their own pertinent comments, laud it, or viciously dissect it. In any case, it appears that people are reading it.
Simply be extra vigilant about filtering out spam comments or eliminating any that do get through. It’s also important adding the nofollow attribute to your comments section so that any erroneous links that emerge are ignored by Google.
15. Local SEO
Google is increasingly providing people results based on their location. This is especially crucial for companies in the real world that need to attract a searcher’s attention at the correct time, such as while walking down the street, on their phone, looking for a place to dine.
You should register with Google My Business and make sure that all of your information, including as opening hours, contact information, customer reviews, and categorization, is accurate and up to date.
Of course, social media marketing is the most obvious technique to increase your site’s visibility through non-technical SEO methods.
You should be present on all relevant social networks (wherever your audience is), not merely broadcasting your stuff facelessly, but also using it as a customer service channel and truly interacting with people in a courteous, helpful, and entertaining manner.
What are search engines NOT looking for?
There are a number of “black hat” methods that can result in your site receiving the full brunt of a Google penalty, therefore it’s best to avoid performing the following, even if it appears to be a wonderful easy victory at the time.
1. Keyword stuffing
Overusing keywords on your pages is a bad idea, especially if they have a negative impact on your site’s readability. It’s questionable whether Google still considers keywords to be a ranking component.
2. Link buying or excessive link exchanging
Are you considering approaching a link farm? Simply put, don’t do that. It’s not even worth the effort. The links to your site that originate from authoritative sites in your niche are the most valuable.
MUST READ: Top 10 best marketing strategies.
3. Annoying ads
Anything that detracts from the pleasure of reading your material and slows down the pace of your site.
4. Mobile app interstitials
Google will deem you no longer mobile friendly if you provide a full-screen advertisement to download your app to mobile visitors.
5. Duplicated content
If Google discovers two identical pieces of material, whether on your own site or somewhere else you’re not aware of, it will only index one of them. Scraper sites, which automatically steal your content and republish it as their own, should be avoided. Here’s Graham Charlton’s in-depth examination on what to do if your material proves to be more effective for someone else.
6. Hidden text and links
There are techniques to influence rankings that a user may never see, but Google will almost certainly see and punish you. Avoid using white text on a white background, off-screen text, zero font size, or burying a link in a single letter such as a comma or a full stop. The urge to add a link to that final full stop was overwhelming.
Please let me know if I’ve overlooked anything important or if I’ve made a mistake.