Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the online visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine’s unpaid results—often referred to as “natural”, “organic”, or “earned” results. In general, the earlier (or higher ranked on the search results page), and more frequently a website appears in the search results list, the more visitors it will receive from the search engine’s users; these visitors can then be converted into customers. SEO may target different kinds of search, including image search, video search, academic search, news search, and industry-specific vertical search engines. SEO differs from local search engine optimization in that the latter is focused on optimizing a business’ online presence so that its web pages will be displayed by search engines when a user enters a local search for its products or services. The former instead is more focused on national or international searches.
The purpose of SEO is to achieve high rankings for your site. Therefore, you should first to decide which keywords you will optimally rank for (you will loop back to reconsider this selection later). Thus begins your SEO journey.
What are keywords?
They are words, phrases and sentences that users punch into search engines when they want to look something up online. Web pages that seem most relevant for those keywords will be displayed in search results. If your site is not relevant for any keywords, you will have no shot at page one for anyone whom you’d like to have come visit.
The goal of keyword research is to maximize your chances of landing your site in the top positions for relevant searches. Keep in mind that keywords alone won’t be enough to get there (unless you use a very unique keyword).
How to choose keywords
Based on their length, keywords can be categorized into short-tail and long-tail.
Short-tail keywords are single words and short phrases that don’t make the searcher’s intent immediately obvious. Here’s a simple example: “cake”. What goes through the mind of someone who Googles “cake”? Do they want to eat a cake? Do they want to bake one? Maybe they want to buy one, or perhaps read about the history of cake? An ambiguous request will fill the SERPs with Wikipedia articles, recipe websites, a software company and lots of images, so your cake related site will be a needle in a heap of other, irrelevant sites – and the searchers will probably never even know your needle exists.
It’s a chaotic situation with few winners. The conclusion? Short-tail keywords alone will not make an SEO campaign. You will need bait for users with more tastyworms (or cake) on it. That’s where long-tail keywords come in.
You can tell a keyword is long-tail at a glance if it describes user intent clearly. For example, “Napoleon cake recipe”: you can be fairly sure why someone would type this in the search bar. They want to know how to make this specific type of cake. A clear, specified request makes a search easier both for the user and Google, as there will be much fewer irrelevant results. With less competition in SERPs, a site optimized for a long-tail keyword will be more visible (and then even more so if location is a relevant factor).
But a single long-tail keyword can bring you only so many visitors. To attract more, you will need to use variations of your target keyword. How users search for something varies from person to person, and you will need an SEO tool to discover all possible words and phrases. You can find all those variations and measure their usefulness for your SEO campaign with WebCEO’s Keyword Suggestions tool.The tool will display helpful information about each keyword in the list.
Global monthly searches: how many times a keyword is searched for • monthly all over the world.
Local monthly searches: how many times a keyword is searched for • monthly in specified locations.
Search trends: a bar graph showing how many times a keyword has been • searched for over the past 12 months.
Keyword effectiveness index: an estimation of how easy it will be to rank for • the keyword (the higher the value, the easier).
Bid competition: a bar showing how many advertisers are bidding for the • keyword.
With this data, you’ll be able to choose keywords that aren’t too competitive, are likely to be trending in the nearest future and will attract many visitors to your site.
How to use keywords
Once you’ve decided on the keywords, it’s time to use them on your site’s pages. Search engines scan for them in the following places:
Page’s URL address•
Page’s title tag•
Images’ alt tags•
Links’ anchor texts from other pages on the site (these are useful for the • linked pages, not the linking ones)
It’s possible to misuse keywords and harm your SEO. Don’t do these things if you want to avoid a drop in site rankings:
If you stuff your text with so many keywords that it begins to sound • unnatural, Google will pick up on this and interpret it as an attempt to artificially increase your rankings. It won’t work.
Stuffing the meta keywords tag with keywords. •
Stuffing the title and the description with keywords. It won’t incur a penalty • from Google, but will make them look unattractive to users when the page appears in SERPs. They’ll be less likely to click on your search result.
Hiding keywords – for example, by making them the same color as the • background. In fact, don’t hide any sort of content on your site (unless it’s meant to be a deliberate Easter egg or you’re James Bond sending a secret message to Doctor No from Q).
Have you put your keywords in all the places they should be? Well done. The final stage of keyword research is monitoring how well your site ranks for the keywords you use. It helps a great deal to know how your competitors rank for them, too.
WebCEO’s Rank Tracking tool displays just that.This information will give you a firm grasp of your progress at all times. Your current position in search results indicates how much you have done for your SEO and how much you still have to do, which is why tracking your keywords is an absolute necessity. If the rankings just won’t go up for any particular keyword no matter what you do, it’s a valid tactic to exclude it from your campaign and try ranking for something different. By looking at your Dangerous Competitors report on WebCEO, you can determine that, if “irrelevant” websites like popular chain stores and industry journals dominate the rankings enough to push your site into oblivion, you will need to optimize your site for more specific searches, such as more location oriented searches.
next post coming soon……..
When your business goals involve driving
customers to a certain place – for example
to the office where you conduct business
– it’s best to make your site rank especially
well in that specific location (be it a town
, a city, a state or a country).
It’s called local SEO: location-focused SEO
activities. This type of SEO is strongly recommended
to brick-and-mortar businesses: they need to be
relevant to the local population, and search engines need
to provide relevant results to prospecting customers.
The steps for performing local
SEO on your site are as follows:
Local keywords research
On-site optimization begins with keywords,
and it’s also the case with local SEO.
Let’s say you own a carpet cleaning business in Boston.
How would someone in Boston look you up
online? Carpet cleaning Boston is the most
obvious keyword that comes to mind,
and also the most perfect. What makes me so sure?
It’s long-tail and captures user intent fully:
what they want (a carpet cleaning service) and
where they want it (in Boston).
It’s safe and effective to optimize a local company’s
site for this kind of keyword.
Remember to use WebCEO’s Keyword Suggestions tool
to get variations of your keywords and
measure their usefulness. To make the
tool even more effective for local SEO,
choose your location in Settings and watch
the Google local search statistics column in
the table (click at the top of the column to
sort from the most popular keywords searched
for locally, to the least popular).
If you are well-versed in your niche
and know how to write specialized content,
you’ll give your site a great advantage.
Your prospective customers will see you as a professional,
and search engines will appreciate
what you do for semantic search.
Be sure to monitor your keywords’
local rankings in WebCEO’s Rank Tracking tool.
You can choose the location in Settings
-> Search engines -> Add a search engine.
Thanks to mobile Internet,
the nearest shopping place is only a single voice command away.
If you want to be easily found that way,
include optimization for mobile devices in your local SEO.
You’ll need it to attract all the Internet users who have converted to
mobile – and they are a significant majority.
Optimize your site for proper display and easy
use on mobile devices. Run a mobile-friendliness test
on your site’s pages with WebCEO’s Mobile
Optimization tool and see if you can improve them.
Name, address, phone number
Also known as NAP – the holy trinity of
local SEO that’s used to identify your business on the Internet.
NAP will serve you best as the anchor text
of a backlink pointing to your site,
but an unlinked mention is useful, too.
The most important requirement to NAP is consistency.
Your company’s name, address and phone
number must be the same everywhere
they are posted.
If they aren’t, it will cause confusion
both for your potential customers and for
search engines who associate your NAP with your site.
Always write it correctly, and if it changes,
you’ll have to edit it everywhere it exists.
Google My Business
If you Google a company, you will most
likely see it on a map right in the search results,
with an address and phone number. Handy,
isn’t it? How can you do the same for your own company?
You will need to submit a listing to Google My Business.
Fill it out with as much information as you can,
including your company’s NAP, open days and hours,
photos of the building and website URL.
Doing so will make your company’s information appear in Google Maps,
Google+ and organic search results.
It will even get its own knowledge graph.
Google Maps and structured data are a deadly combo.
One shows you on the map, the other
shows searchers all important information
about your business without having to click any further.
All you need to do is add some extra code on
the pages you want to empower,
and the information will be displayed right in search results.
The catch is, you have to get those pages on Google’s page one first.
Structured data comes in different formats,
but Google recommends using JSON-LD and Microdata.
Local link building
There are many business directories
(like the famous Yelp) where you can submit your
company’s listing. Users often turn to those directories
before Google to find the service they need,
so it’s crucial to build your presence on them.
Submit your listings only in the directories
which are relevant to your business’s niche.
The context around your backlinks must be of relevance
to your site, or they will hurt your SEO.
Gather positive reviews
Customers trust each other.
A single review can make or break a business.
Give your customers the best service you can offer and
then ask them to leave a review on your site
– most of the time, they will.
Gather as many positive reviews as you can and show them off and online,
and many more customers will flock to you.
Hyperlinks connect web pages internally and make
it possible to travel between them quickly.
Being a major part of the Internet and any
website, they naturally play a role in
optimizing websites for search engines,
too. Here’s how they affect SEO:
Internal links make your site usable by humans.
Unless your website consists of exactly one page,
it must have internal links to ensure swift navigation between
the pages that users are supposed to visit.
A poorly designed internal linking structure can spell
disaster for your business goals;
lacking one altogether will make them impossible.
So plan out the user’s journey on your domain.
Rule of thumb: make sure you can jump from any page
to any other page in three clicks or less.
Internal links make your site’s pages visible to search engines.
Links are used by search engines to crawl and
index pages; this is true for both
internal and cross-domain links. A page with no
links pointing to it will not
show up in search results. With few
notable exceptions like robots.txt,
there should be no unlinked (or linked with
a “nofollow” tag) pages on your site.
Internal links pass authority (or “link juice”) between pages.
A page’s authority is determined by search engines
based on how well it’s optimized.
When a page with high authority
links to a different page, it causes the latter’s own
authority to increase, and it may appear
higher in search results for its keywords.
That doesn’t mean you should choose your
most authoritative page and link
from it to every other: the more
outbound links on a single page,
the less authority they pass individually.
A well-designed internal linking structure will ensure every
important page is getting as much link juice as possible.
You can check all of your pages’ authority
in WebCEO’s Page Authority Analysis tool.
Use it to plan the flow of authority across your site.
Internal links’ anchor texts help pages rank.
When search engine crawlers scan links,
they associate their anchor texts with linked pages,
effectively turning them into keywords.
This is why you should avoid using generic and contextually
unrelated anchor texts like “click here” in your internal links –
it would make them less effective SEO-wise than they should be.
Check all your anchor texts in WebCEO’s Link Text Analysis tool.
It can detect even links without any text inside them
– that’s definitely something that needs improvement.
You might be tempted to stuff your pages with
lots of internal links with keyword-heavy anchor texts.
Be aware that Google does not like webmasters who try to ‘game’ SEO.
Any unnatural-looking links, internal or otherwise,
are ground for manual actions from Google.
Why is high-quality content so crucial for SEO?
That’s because Google (like any
other search engine) has a purpose: to offer users the best websites that exist
online. They measure a website’s worth to users by several criteria, one of them
being content quality. A web page’s position in SERPs depends on how well
its content meets Google’s requirements. Those requirements aren’t arbitrary;
they are based on what appeals to the majority of users, or what sort of content
they deem high-quality.
Of course, it’s entirely up to you what to create on your site. You have total control
there, as long as it’s legal. But when SEO is involved, there are recommendations
that will increase your chances of ranking high. Your content should be:
Users Google things because they want something specific.
Create content that will fulfil their wants and needs in the best way possible.
Factual and up-to-date
Incorrect information isn’t helpful, and in some
cases it can be harmful.
90% of information goes to our brains through the
eyes. If you want to get your users hooked on your content and keep them
coming, make it enjoyable.
eyes. If you want to get your users hooked on your content and keep them
coming, make it enjoyable.
Is the goal of the page to impart knowledge to your
visitors? Then keep it professional, readable and without grammar
Taking chunks of text from other sites or duplicating them
completely will cause Google Panda, one of Google’s algorithms, to lower
your whole site’s rankings – not just the offending page’s. Extreme cases
can lead to your site getting removed from Google’s index or a copyright
lawsuit from the content’s rightful owners. Not to mention that users
aren’t interested in reading the same things on multiple sites. Everyone will appreciate you a lot more if your content is unique.
Strive to provide users with the best possible experience on
your site. Some elements like screen-blocking intrusive interstitials can ruin
the experience and make users not want to come again.
Optimization for semantic search
When writing content, it’s highly recommended to go into detail about your topic. Not only will it improve your content’s quality, it will also make Google’s job of digging through websites easier. Why does it matter? Because search can be complicated by those pesky things called homonyms.
For example, let’s say there’s a web page optimized for the word “china”. Without knowing the details, can you tell if it talks about the stuff they use to make teapots, or the country China? Context is desperately required there,especially since search queries aren’t case sensitive. Without it, Google risks giving users
something they don’t need.
You can help Google by writing text optimized for semantic search.
It means including words that are often used together with your keywords of choice,
thus providing the much necessary context both for users and search engines.
Google Panda and how to avoid it
Google uses several algorithms to separate good websites from the bad. Panda’s job is to find sites with low-quality content and lower their ranking positions. Naturally, getting hit by Panda is a disaster for your SEO and business strategy, so you should avoid it at all costs and work hard on your content.
Google Panda targets sites guilty of
.Duplicate content: copied from other sites or reused on multiple pages of your own site.
.Unhelpful content: sites with content that is thin and/or provides no value to visitors.
.Dubious content: sites with content that comes from unverified sources.
.Low-quality user-generated content: for example, forums and blogs where users post content of poor quality.
.Content that does not match the search query that found it.
.Having more ads than actual content.
Thanks for joining me!
Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton