What Is SEO And Why You Need It
Here’s your SEO guide for bloggers and business owners – what is SEO and why you need it. Pst… SEO is really about human connection. Publish well written content in a friendly tone that’s info packed and value added.
We know that when you hear the term “SEO” you want to run for the hills, or at the very least, roll your eyes and zone out. Because it sounds scary right, and like a foreign language. You’re thinking “what is SEO? It sounds too complex for me, I’ll just leave that in the too hard basket for now.” But here’s my tip for you. If you do nothing else “techie” with your blog and business website, SEO is an absolute must.
Your Guide To SEO for Bloggers and Business Owners
So What Is SEO And What Does It Mean?
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation and relates to the way you optimise your website pages and blog posts to “rank” in search engines like Google. Which means if you’re providing a service or answering a question or publishing crucial information, you want it to rank – or appear – #1 (or at least on the 1st page of Google). This is so that the people looking for the answers can find you. Why? Because 75% of users don’t scroll past the 1st page of Google.
Hopefully they’ll then pop over to your site, consume info for days, become hooked, subscribe, opt-in to more content, and potentially buy something from you, become a client, or become a regular and loyal reader.
An easy way to think about SEO is the process of doing a bunch of different things to give search engines more information about your website and pages. Search engines then use this information within their complex algorithm to determine which pages to show in their search results page (known as SERPs). So the more information you can give to the search engines, the better.SEO is about taking actions to ensure a higher visibility to search engines to increase your site ranking. #SEO #contentmarketing Click To Tweet
What Is SEO and Why Is It Important?
SEO is important because first and foremost – it helps to connect web users with your products and services. And you want people to know you exist right? ‘Search is the #1 driver of traffic to content sites, beating social media by more than 300%,’ Kate Toon.
Perhaps just as important as having people know you exist and being able to find you on the web, is your positioning on the web. Where you rank within the search engine pages of Google is a factor that determines the users’ perspective as to your credibility. Other generic search engines exist but let’s be real, Google kind of holds the market share when it comes to user preference. Because rightly or wrongly, we’re likely to assume that a business on the 10th page of Google is not as good as its competitor sitting over on the 1st page of Google.
To take this further, your search engine ranking complements your brand awareness. The more visible you are, the more memorable you are, and so the methods you take to play into the search engine’s algorithms will have a direct impact on your business positioning.
So How Do I Optimise For SEO?
Firstly – remember that SEO is content marketing, and content marketing is SEO. And so whether it’s creating the copy for your website pages, or creating epic blog posts, always write with SEO in mind. Good content that is genuine, full of information, and tells a story is always going to be well received. To do this, you need to know what your audience wants, and then you need to deliver. Remember too that you must be publishing regular content, SEO is not something you can do once and then never again.
To take this further, there are two main components to keep in mind when building your pages and blog posts for search engine optimisation – ‘On-Page’ and ‘Off Page’ SEO.
On-Page SEO relates to the processes you take within your page to optimise it for the search engines. The most important of these for on-page SEO are things like:
1 // Optimising your page titles and descriptions to include keywords
2 // Using proper URL structures that feature your keywords. For example, www.seedsocial.com.au/what-is-seo instead of www.seedsocial.com.au/?p=578544
3 // Text formatting that includes your keywords – e.g. H1 and H2 tags
4 // Including internal links within your site that relate to the topic
5 // Optimising your images – e.g. naming your images with keywords, using the correct image sizes, and including alt-tag info
6 // Having a fast page load time and site speed
7 // User friendly 404 pages
8 // Publishing regular quality content
9 // Receiving quality and genuine external links
10 // Google Authorship verification for all pagesSEO for bloggers & biz owners – what is #SEO + why you need it. #digitalmarketing #womeninbiz Click To Tweet
Off-Page SEO relates to all of the other things outside of your site that you can do to boost your search engine ranking. The main methods are divided into three key categories:
- Link building
- Social media
- Social bookmarking
Link building is a valuable tactic because it tells the search engines that this page is really important because many other people are linking to it and accessing it. How the community interacts with your site is an off-page SEO tactic that feeds into the complicated algorithm that determines your search engine page results.
Therefore link building is often one of the most popular off-page SEO methods because it is a relatively easy approach – simply gather a bunch of your friends who have websites and get them all to link back to your page? Right? Wrong!
Over time the search engines have refined their algorithms to specify that the back-links your site receives must be authentic, genuine and quality. This is because search engines are of the opinion that the more people talking about and linking to your site, indicates that your site is useful. A website that is useful is more likely to have people talking about it – such as social mentions, pins on Pinterest, be shared amongst communities on Facebook and be saved in bookmarks.
Tip: A reliable way to generate authentic back-links is to guest post on other websites and have them link back to your site within the article.Google will penalise you for spammy backlinks. Your backlinks must be from reputable sources. #SEO #contentmarketing Click To Tweet
It’s also important to remember that building links won’t have an immediate effect to your page ranking. SEO, especially off-page SEO, can be a slow build process. As with most things, it takes time to see quality results. According to Moz, it could take up to 10 weeks to see 1 jump in page rank. And so don’t be sucked in to SEO ‘spammy’ sites promising results they won’t be able to deliver.
The most crucial method you can do to ensure you’re optimising your pages and blog posts for SEO is to remember that your website is a means to communicating with your audience, and is a driver for two-way conversation. So define your topic, choose your words, and write with meaning to serve a genuine purpose.
So what is SEO? Very simply, SEO is creating valuable content and then telling the search engines key information about that content, so that they can decide who and when to give the content to within search engine results.
>>> Have any extra tips for optimising your digital content for SEO? Share with us in the comments!