What is Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)?
An overview of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
The way We think of SEO is as a process. A process for increasing the exposure / rankings of a website within the "organic" search results.
Organic or sometimes called natural search results are the free results. None of the websites returned there are paying to be there. They are the results that the search engine considers to be the most relevant and trustworthy websites.
Often across the top and along the right of the organic results, are the paid for results. These companies are paying the search engine to be there on a per-click basis.
How to increase relevance?
This may seem to be obvious to some. We regard a keyword to be anything that is searched for ie it can be a word or phrase. Keyword research allows us to see upfront critical information about the keywords that people are searching for online.
Using the Google Keyword planner tool, we can research:
- What keywords people are searching for
- How many people are searching for each keyword
- What level of competition there is for each keyword.
If you want to see this process in action, watch our keyword research video.
Increasing relevance boils down to content. If you have an empty website it will not be relevant for anything, therefore it will not be shown in the search engine.
Textual content is of the highest importance. Essentially text is the only thing that Google can read.
Text in this context doesn't just refer to the writing on the page but also to the descriptions we give our media. The search engines need these descriptions to understand what the media is about ie video, audio and images. Images and videos add bundles. Largely because Google knows that it improves their end users online experience.
We have a video about on-page SEO and formatting here.
How to increase trustworthiness with search engines?
Quality back links
It's important to add emphasis to the word "quality" here. The search engines consider links to your website as almost a vote up from the site linking to you.
That said, not all links are equal. If you can get links to your website from reputable and relevant websites, this will help push you in the right direction.
However, if you get links from a website that is considered spammy at best, this will hurt your search engine rankings. This is because they will think you are of the same low quality.
So be careful about who you associate yourself with online. Perhaps do some guest blogging on the leading informative website in your niche, then you link back to your website as the author.
Social authority and SEO
This is now becoming a big influence in todays world. Social authority works much the same way as back links. In that if many people are sharing or liking your content, it must be good. In short that's it.
We will say that social marketing isn't just about creating a page for your business and getting your friends to like it. It takes time and effort to do well.
You'll need to reach out to the people who maybe in the market that you're selling. You'll need to keep posting interesting content to keep them engaged and keep you in the forefront of their mind. Otherwise they'll never see your brand again after clicking follow. If it's frequent and boring they'll decide to un-follow you.
What is a Google penalty?
A Google penalty is perhaps the worst thing that can happen to a website in terms of organic search engine optimisation. Largely a website will receive a penalty for trying to trick the search engines system.
These tricks are collectively known as "Black Hat SEO". Everything up to this point is regarded as "White SEO", is perfectly legitimate and safe. The tricks that are regarded as "Black Hat" include but are not limited to:
- Cloaking. A site is showing different pages to users than are shown to Google, or redirecting users to a different page than Google saw.
- Doorway pages. Pages that are the same as each other except for the keywords you're targeting.
- Hidden text and/or keyword stuffing.
- Unnatural links to your website. This happens when you get lots of low quality links to your website. This is usually the result of purchasing them as oppose to earning them.
- Thin content with little or no added value. You can fall into this by copying content from other places.
- Spammy low quality content
Essentially to do well in Google requires work and various amounts of it depending on what you are targeting. You need great original content, that reputable relevant websites will want to link to. When applicable to a website, content that people will want to genuinely share with everyone.
Of course you also need a finely tuned website that empowers you to do this easily. The Drupal websites that we develop for our clients are enterprise class content publishing systems. They take care of all the technical SEO work, leaving you with a website that is as easy to use as social networking websites like Facebook..
We'd love to here from you if you're ready to take on the competition. We'll not only develop your tool for the job, we'll be on the phone to help and advise you every step of the way. Contact us now to get the ball rolling.