Search Engine Optimization or SEO is the process or series of steps one takes in an effort to make their website or other online assets more visible to others when others search for content online using search engines. This is also known as positioning one’s assets to be found by “organic” searches as opposed to “Pay Per Click” (PPC) where you pay search engines a fee to help your site stand out and to be found.
So what is actually involved in this process called SEO? What are the steps you want to take to develop your assets online to make them easier to find? My list below is by no means complete, but it will serve to give you a solid overview of the tasks you can complete to make your site more visible.
Registration in search engines: The first thing you will want to do is register your website with the search engines. Most search engines offer you a method by which you can tell them about your site and site ownership and you can also tell them what web pages exist on your website by sending a “Sitemap.xml” file.
Search engine indexing: Next, you’ll want to tell them more about your individual web pages so that this information can be stored and “indexed” in their internal databases for use when people do “organic” searches. Each search engine has its own method to accept requests for indexing of your web page, for example; Yahoo-Bing allows you to submit 10 web pages for indexing per day and Google, the largest search engine in the world today, gives you a web page indexing request tool called “Search as Google” where you can enter your pages to index. Remember when using this tool to register each page as a standard web page and also to register these same pages separately for mobile pages if they are “Mobile Responsive” under construction, as Google maintains separate databases for mobile pages and for being found. organically on a cell phone. you will need to have them registered in this second database as well.
Link Building: This is the art of building links to your site from other quality internet locations, usually owned by others. This is often done by leaving posts on other forums, asking other site owners to link their sites to theirs, building a presence on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Reddit, etc. and link your presence on those sites to your website, write articles and press releases that mention your site, post videos on places like YouTube and Vimeo that relate to you, publish eBooks, and more. The more “External Backlinks” you can create for your site, the stronger your site will look in the eyes of Google and other search engines and the better your site will rank within those engines organically.
On-site optimization: There are also things you can do within your own website to strengthen your SEO rankings in search engines. You’ll want to do keyword and keyword phrase research as you create web page titles and write content for those pages, do the same for the images you use so they’re well described, link pages so they can keep people on your site longer easily. Giving them more access to additional related content on your site, create “Anchor Text” on your site, which means taking strong keyword phrases and embedding hyperlinks to other on-site and off-site locations behind this text.
Content creation: Write your website content in such a way that the web page title and description are supported by the words of your content as close to the top of each page content as possible, as this helps to validate these pages as real and of value to search engines when rendering pages to their own content consumers.
Use of Videos, Audios and Images: Use them liberally on your site, as search engines know that people would rather watch videos, look at images or listen to audio than read text, so use this strategy and be sure to describe them thoroughly within the “meta” of your web pages. . -data” and also submit them for indexing to search engines. It’s tedious work, but it will pay significant dividends to your site over time in terms of visibility.
Create your web pages to be “mobile responsive”: These days, search engines like Google won’t even show non-responsive pages to people who query “organic” content through them. If your website isn’t responsive, they won’t find you.
Create web pages natively: Build your web pages natively instead of using templates whenever possible, and test them for loading speed. If your web pages and in particular your mobile web pages do not fully load within 2-4 seconds, your page will be penalized or may not even be displayed through organic searches. Template pages tend to be “thicker” so they take longer to load, which is why I make this point. Also keep image sizes small: 4 megabyte images take much longer to load than 20,000 images…
Competitive keyword analysis: Perform a competitive analysis on your keyword research and where you rank for those keywords relative to your competitors. Look at what’s getting to the first page in an organic search for keywords and phrases you want to rank for and research how hard it would be to scroll them to get your content to show up on the first page of a search, and there are a number of tools available that can help you make this job easier. The bottom line though is that you want to get to page one by ranking for the words and phrases you choose and how you use them for SEO effect on your site; you don’t want to do all this work to rank on page 10 where far fewer content seekers land.
Using search engine dashboards: Search engines create dashboards for you to use to see how they’re viewing your site and what errors they’re finding on your site, and often offer suggestions for fixes and improvements. Use these boards! Get as much as you can from them about the quality of your site, make any corrections, and let them know when you’ve fixed it so they can “recrawl” your site to record that it has improved. Doing this work is very important to maintain a good search engine ranking.
In summary, the above are just some of the main things you will need to do to have a chance of getting to page one in the search engines organically. Organic SEO takes a lot of work, but those who put in the time to do this work on their sites are rewarded with organic traffic to their sites. Improving organic SEO should be an ongoing process for any company trying to do business online. Traffic is money and if others are doing this and you are not, they will be the ones making the sales you want to get. Often getting this right means the very survival of the business.