What is SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Updated: Jun 27, 2022
Searching for information using Google, Bing, etc has become an integral part of our everyday life. Be it a holiday destination for leisure, want to know meaning of a word, inquisitee about why your head aches a lot, what are the symptoms of COVID, information on a product which you want to purchase or simply finding a location; the first thing we resort to is open the browser on our mobiles or laptops, enter some keywords and hit the search button & vola…! we have millions of search results displayed in front of us.
Have you ever wondered how you land up getting the list of relevant websites in your searches? Is it magic, or these Search engines playing GOD?
Well… it is pure technology at the end of Search Engine providers and hard work put in by companies in creating relevant content on their website. These websites which feature on the first page of your search results have been working on optimizing their sites, which enables them to be in the top of the search list. This happens through Search Engine Optimization.
Search Engine Optimization, also referred to as SEO is the process of improving the content, structure and other elements of your website, in order to increase the visibility of your website on the search engine result pages, when someone searches any search engine for information, product or services as being offered by you. The more your website appears on in the first page of the search results (with different search keywords combination) the more chances of prospective customers visiting your website leading to increase in brand awareness, & ultimately increase in sales.
Let’s look at how SEO works
All search engines work on the concept of ‘Crawling for data’. Google/Bing have Bots/Spiders who keep crawling webpages of websites on the internet & collect information about each webpage. This data is then stored in a table and indexed for future. Think of it as your kitchen cabinet where you keep all your spices properly labelled in different shelves making it easier for you to pick out the one which you need without going through all the shelves every time; just that the search engine index is exponentially larger than your kitchen shelves.
There are hundreds of factors which the Search engine algorithm uses in order to organise the information of these pages in the index. Based on these factors there is a ranking which is given, which ultimately decides which page to be picked up and displayed first relevant to the keywords searched by someone for a specific piece of information. This might look easy, but the algorithms are much more complex than can be imagined.
In order for the information displayed in the search results to be relevant, SEO cannot be implemented by paying the Search engines. Optimizing a website is a long-drawn process taking months before the relevant pages starts showing up on the first page of Search Results. Optimization not just involve just filling up your webpages with the relevant content, but there are various other factors which needs to be looked into. A few factors for your reference are listed below:
Authentic Business Information
Website to be Secure and Accessible
Page loading Speed (Including Mobile Page Speed)
If your website Mobile Friendly?
What is your Domain Age?
How is your URL structured?
What is your domain Authority?
Is your content on the paged Optimized
There are 2 common terms which are commonly spoken when we talk about SEO:
On-Page SEO > Elements which needs to be optimized on your website (code/content)
Off-Page SEO > Elements to be optimized outside of the website which helps in building the site trustworthiness & authority
On-Page optimization forms the basis of SEO & if done properly it can help in getting faster SEO results. In order to be able to perform On-Page SEO, you require some knowledge of HTML, website designing & development. Some elements which you need to consider under On-Page SEO are mentioned below:
Meta Title Tag – A good Title for the page is very important which should be unique & descriptive keeping the character length not more than 70 characters.
Meta Description Tag – A unique description of the page with relevant information of not more than 200 characters needs to be defined. This is the description which gets shown in the search results.
Meta Keywords Tag – When users search for any information each one of them uses different keywords in their search phrases. It is necessary to define high quality keywords which define your business & products/services.
Image Optimization – All images need to be defined with their ALT tags as the same helps in the search.
H1 Tags – Usage of H1, H2 & H3 Tags help the search engine identify the main elements of the page.
URL Optimization – As search engines also take the URLs into account, it is necessary to have the URL links defined in proper manner with the relevant keywords.
Page Content – Every page should have relevant & unique content with good keyword density.
Broken Link – Periodic audits should be done to identify the links with no pages and remove them.
Sitemap – Creating a structured XML Sitemap is as important as the other elements.
Robots File – If you need to restrict the search engines from crawling certain pages on your website, use robots.txt file as applicable.
Off-Page optimization basically involves proper link building outside of your website which drives the users to your website. Articles, PR, Social Bookmarking, Directory, etc are some of the ways you can implement the back links to your website. Few Off-Page Optimization techniques are as follows:
Search Engine Submission – Being the first step of off-page optimization, we need to submit the website URL on main search engines like Google, Bing, etc
Directory Submission – There are Directories on which you can submit your Website URL for free. Search for these directories & include your website URL in the relevant category.
Social Bookmarking Submission – Social bookmarking involves registering for free before you can share details on your website, content, images, etc.
Article submission – Create relevant articles and submit the same with relevant back links incorporated. These articles need to be unique and relevant.
Press release – similar to Article submission, you need to search for Press Release sites which are free and submit your articles/news.
Blog Post and Comment – An effective way is to create blogs on your website or on other sites & also comment on these blogs with the relevant links to your website.
Forum Posting – Identify relevant forums and be a part of the same with back links.
Even thought SEO is a continuous process with results showing only after sometime, it is a must for any business with a website. It is highly recommended that businesses take assistance from experts in building & implementing their SEO strategy as it is the most effective Organic way of driving customers to your website on a continuous basis.
With the business dynamics changing rapidly in today’s world, every business, be it small or big needs to have an online presence and be a part of the global digitization. A start-up, SME running a brick & mortar business or an entity with established footprints in the online domain, all need to survive in this cut-throat competitive business world. It is apparent that we look at new strategies & ideas on how we can use the power of the Online World. Ceresphere Consulting focuses on setting this stage for your online presence & more importantly on the growth of your business digitally. Contact us for assistance in the Digital space.