Search engine optimization (SEO) is the continuous process of improving your site’s content to achieve as higher ranking as possible in search engines. Considering the great competition enterprises go through the internet, hunting high ranking in Google is imperative in the modern marketer’s duties. Although this practice has its drawbacks due to its complex and dynamic nature (the factors that Google weighs more may change overtime), if a first page or even better a first position in the first page is earned organically (without deploying paid search), rest assured that new customers will ring you more often from now on. Very briefly, the variables’ categories that search engines will check if your site deserves high ranking are seen below.
- Domain Factors
- Page Level Factors
- Site Level Factors
- Backlink Factors
- User Interaction
- Special Algorithm Rules
- Social Signals
- Brand Signals
When a SEO campaign is decided to be built, the process for success is clear cut.
- First, we need to let search engines know that our site is ready to fulfill its purpose. Therefore we submit and synchronise the homepage to the search engines’ sign up to web services along with Bing, Google and Yahoo accounts.
- The next step consists of creating and uploading a sitemap instead of the old-school adding web pages manually. This is done for the search engine’s robot to crawl all pages and assign weight in terms of relevance. Complementary action for index inclusion accounts for setting webpages links in a more SEO friendly way. www.example.com is not considered the best way to set your permalinks nowadays.
- Keyword research is the phase where real SEO practice takes place. At this point we need to judge the value of each keyword by following a simple procedure. By listing out of the box terms and according to the characteristics (or qualifiers) of the website we conclude which terms should be placed to where. The use of some third party tools is necessary for the production of variant keyphrases and unmentioned terms.
Key sources for identifying keyphrases include:
- Market Knowledge
- Competitors Sites’
- Keyphrases visitors used to reach our site
- Keyphrase analysis tool.
- By getting close to finish with the first phase of keyword research, we apply our findings on each webpage. Some meaningful aspects we test are the search terms in the body, description of the page and visual media. This is called the on-site optimization.
- Google has defined that the number of links into a page is a great way to determine the relevance of a page. Social media are a great opportunity to increase quality links in the website and in the profiles themselves. The more links a page has from good quality sites the better its ranking. For generic keyphrases where there is a lot of competition eg “Advertising Agencies” the quantity and the quality of inbound links will be more important than the keyphrase density. To link your website to as many quality links as we can is the main task of external linking phase.
- Internal Linking is the last step of the SEO process and the less valuable one. Google respects external links more than internal however the most important principle in this stage is to include keyphrases used by searchers within the anchor text of a hyperlink. We should consider how to increase the number of the internal links to pages we want to rank well.
Various studies have proved that organic search engine optimization ranks as number 1 factor to increase your business’s visibility and therefore conversion rate. A problem of the practice is that a high degree of unpredictability exists. A well organised campaign though can guarantee delightful outcomes in a snap.