How Does SEO Work?
SEO or Search Engine Optimization is a buzz word or a buzz acronym if you like. You’ve heard it before from technical people and marketers and you’re suspicious your competitors are using it as well. But what is it?
If you search online “what is search engine optimization” you’ll get the following response: “SEO is the process of maximizing the number of visitors to a particular website by ensuring that the site appears high on the list of results returned by a search engine.”
In other words, SEO is the process of getting people to your website because your website is ranking really well in one of the main search engines out there. We’ve all heard of Google and that’s the main one, getting 90% of worldwide searches according to Statista over the last eight years. Other popular search engines include, Bing, Yahoo and Duck Duck Go.
What is organic and what’s not?
We’ll take Google as an example here. When you’re searching in Google, you’ll see a variety of results and it can vary greatly on what it is you’re actually searching. Let’s use the example of “oil water separator”.
As you can see from the example image, there is a ton of different information presented in a lot of different ways. SEO factors into every one of these boxes to some degree but for the purpose of this blog post, we are going to focus on the area marked in green. These are the results that are organically ranked by Google.
You can’t pay your way to the top when it comes to these results and it takes hundreds of different factors to get your business to page one of Google organically for search term that you want to be found for.
So how do you get your website to the top pages of Google?
With hundreds of factors to the SEO process, we are going to focus on a few main ones with this blog post. The main factors we’ll focus on are on-page content, off-page content, and quality linking.
Just like it sounds. If you want to be ranking for phrases that your potential customer could be searching for, you’ll want to make sure those phrases are featured on your site. Taking the example of “oil water separator” once again. You’ll want to have at least one page dedicated to oil water separators, especially if it is one of your main product offerings. It’s highly recommended to post blog posts on a weekly or monthly basis mentioning how you’re bringing oil water separators to market and how it will benefit customers.
Much like this very blog post you’re reading is explaining how SEO works, breaking it down for future customers or interested parties about what the phrase is, how it benefits them and how they can apply that knowledge, needs to be featured on the site.
Think of your website as a Super Bowl party. You can make the best party in the world with all the chips, dips, drinks and the big screen TV to watch the game but if you don’t send out any invites, will people show up? Websites are the exact same. You could have all the bells and whistles and your website could be the most appealing one on the internet but if you don’t tell people about it, no one is going to see it. That’s why writing about phrases you want to be found for on other online properties is paramount to your website’s success.
Taking advantage of social channels like Twitter and Facebook or getting high quality content posted on other authoritative sites will take your beautiful website to the next level, getting it found for your customers.
Leveraging quality content online is all about association. The more your website is associated with high quality links, the better it is going to perform. This is a difficult task to accomplish if you don’t have formal training and is extremely time consuming to yield quality results.
SEO agencies specialize in producing high-performing link structures that get your website found. The more quality links you have, the higher your page values and domain authority.
|Domain Authority (DA) is a search engine ranking score developed by Moz that predicts how well a website will rank on search engine result pages (SERPs). A Domain Authority score ranges from one to 100, with higher scores corresponding to a greater ability to rank.|
What’s the point of it?
Here’s a simple question.
So what makes you different than anyone else?
SEO is important because it is one of the most trusted ways by consumers to get their information and make decisions. Although there is social media and paid advertising, Moz reports that only 2.8% of people searching in the US actually click on advertisements.
SEO is also an investment in the future of your business. It’s one of the only marketing channels that doesn’t necessarily require constant investment. Producing quality content over time can help your web pages remain on the top pages of Google, fueling your business for years to come.
Where to go from here
Now that you have a better idea of how SEO works, check out these other learning tools to get your website started on the path to success.