What Does SEO Refer To?
SEO refers to Search Engine Optimization. It is a process which affects the visibility of a web site or page to the users in the web search engines’ unpaid (also called as natural or organic) results. That is, it increases the quality and most importantly quantity of traffic that your website receives.
Basically it optimizes all the online contents according to the key words and this may result in your content being present in the top when a user uses that keyword to search on the search engine.
Simplifying it further, say for example this article. If I want this article to show up first on the list whenever somebody searches with keywords like SEO, then I should optimize my article in such a way that Google lists me on top of search results.
SEO is more widespread than the local engine search optimization, as the optimizations are done at national and international stages.
At A Glance
We all are living in an era where we are enslaved to technology. On an average we spend on average 3 hours on the phone daily. Be it for looking at the news or to search for the stats on who leads in presidential promotions. Most of our time goes in searching for something or the other on the search engines.
Well speaking of search engines, Google isn’t the sole search engine that we have, though it is definitely the most popular one. There are dozens of search engines like Bing, Yahoo…etc to name a few. More than 70% of the searches are done on Google. And even there, you are most likely to click on the first result that shows up. According to statistics, the top five searches in Google account to nearly 65% of all clicks.
This ranking that you get on the search engines is determined by an internal algorithm of the search engines largely led by Google. This algorithm is actively guarded to prevent people from decoding it. But as we say, people do find their way around with everything and anything.
Why Is It Important?
Say for example, you type the keyword SEO on any search engine. I am taking the example of Google. The contents that are listed on the first page are a few of the total 66, 60, 00,000 contents that can be found related to the keyword. The top searches find their position on page one, while the rest of the contents are sequentially arranged in the subsequent pages.
Cross your heart and think, do you ever go through the pages on Google? The answer is no. You browse through the result summed up by Google and satisfactorily end your exploration to the few contents that your gaze attracts. In other words, the contents that end up on pages other than first do not end up seeing the light of the day.
The amount of traffic that your site officially gets and maintains over time is a direct result of this optimization that Google and other search engines all over the world do. The main aim is to get traffic from diverse sources and also the repetitive visitors.
No matter how much you try to promote your content via promoting them on facebook pages and other social networking sites, the traffic you might receive is negligible. Google receives 63,000 searches per second and I bet you would have friends to bring traffic of even a fraction compared to that. So if you want a staggering amount of people to visit your site, you must get trust from Google. A trust which can take your content to top. So how to build a trust with the AI of Google?
Types Of SEO
Broadly speaking there are two types, though the presence of an intermediate third cannot be ignored. The types are:
White Hat SEO –
It is the obvious ethical one as the name suggests. The SEO of the website is according to Google’s webmaster guidelines. They do not indulge in malpractices to manipulate Google’s algorithm.
Here, a more priority is given to the audience. That is, Google by its very nature aims to provide the users with the best content. Hence, if a website ranks on top searches using white hat SEO, it means they did not use any outside influence and Google algorithm find the content best for the users.
Lastly, since it is basically dependent on your content quality and website proficiency, you will have to wait for a long time to reap its benefits.
Black Hat SEO –
As the name suggests, it is the opposite of Whit Hat one. Here, creators rely on tactics to manipulate Google’s algorithm. They make use of loopholes in the algorithm to artificially make their sites be seen as seemingly better than the other. Needless to say, they might often violate webmaster guidelines.
Grey Hat SEO –
It is intermediate of the two. That is, though it may not be as bad as black hat one, but they are risky and are not entirely according to the guidelines.
So the question arises, if people do use Black Hat SEO, then wouldn’t they be reaping the benefits? Well yes, but the result is short lived. To deliver the best and unhampered delivery to its users, Google has developed the algorithm which continually learns and corrects itself. And as more AI learns, more difficult and complex it becomes to be comprehended by humans.
Though, by using Black Hat SEO, websites do find themselves on top searches. But they are soon taken down by the algorithm. It drops their ranking and future prospects of rising again. Moreover there are high chances that your channel may be flagged for violating the code and this can result in taking down the website from the search engine itself.
Strategy To SEO
To ensure that you do not miss out while building up organic search results, three inputs go into your content.
Keyword optimization –
Keyword is the word that a user uses to search a given topic. When you type a keyword on Google, you are recommended with other related searches to your keyword. Scrolling down the page also you can find a router where other keywords are listed at the bottom of the page. Searching on those keywords, you get more and more keywords related to your search making an unending loop.
Another easy way to get hold of keywords without much effort is to make use of services. Keyword Shitter provides an easy way to get all the keywords you find on the search engine.
Searching enough keywords is not enough. You have to select the keywords on which you can base your website. The keywords should be as such that they draw maximum traffic. There are service providers (e.g. Keywords Everywhere) which give an index of how many searches the given keyword sees per month. Based on these, you can select the most appropriate one for your website.
On page SEO –
It refers to various strategies that you make use of so as to make your website/page better for the user and for the algorithm. It includes basics that will enhance your site’s working.
- Your title and URL should be related to keywords and easy to comprehend.
- Convert all your websites to https format.
- Decrease the loading time for your page. There are service providers that help you to check the page speed. Algorithms prefer pages that are lightweight and quick to load.
- Remove the error pages, not found pages, broken links…etc from your websites.
- Bounce back rate refers to the people who back your pages immediately without browsing through it. It sends wrong information to the algorithm. Hence, the idea is to captivate the viewers attention and not to ward them off with useless pop ups and advertisements.
- Click through rates (CTR) — If a page listed lower in ranking by the algorithm shows greater footfall (i.e. clicks) than the others, then the algorithm takes note of it and moves the content upwards.
Off Page SEO –
It includes strategies outside your website.
Basically, if a site credits a particular website then Google marks that credited website as a potentially good website. This is called backlinks. More the algorithm of Google is directed to your website via other sites, better is your site deemed as. This is called a backlink. Here quality actually matters a lot more than quantity.
Hence, if you can get a link from an authentic and large reputed website it will profit you more than buying thousands of links. Having hundreds of backlinks, makes the algorithm think of it as potential spam.
Best Keyword Research Tools For SEO In 2020
Google lists a long list where you can search for keywords best suiting for your content/website. Topping the list among various charts is SEMrush. Listing the tools that feature across two or more lists are:
- Ahrefs keyword Explorer
- Google Keyword planner
- Long Tail Pro
All these provide you with good resources where you can not only search for your keywords, but also gives an index on which is more beneficial and less competitive for the user. These have nominal pricing and depend on the company you choose. For example Google planner comes for free.
Investing in a good keyword search engine is a must if you want to increase your visibility among the thousands of similar contents. It is a prerequisite to building a good and profitable website/page.