SEO or search engine optimization is essentially the process that allows a website or a web page to gain visibility and reach through a search engine organically. Every individual on the internet uses search engines to find what they are looking for, and search engine traffic is an integral part of every website’s reach and audience. As a result, search engine traffic is a potent tool for businesses, especially if they can capture relevant audiences and capitalize on their target market through it. Hence, strong search engine optimization efforts help companies grow, increase their sales, and “put themselves out there.”
How Does SEO Work?
Search engines work towards providing the best services for their users, and hence they ensure that the results of their search engines only show the most relevant and most high-quality websites for their users. To accomplish this, search engines employ “crawlers” that scan or crawl on various websites to fully gauge the website and its contents. In addition, they navigate multiple websites, create indexes that help search engines provide rankings and SEO scores for each website, and match user searches with relevant and engaging results.
Hence, the higher a website ranks in a relevant search category or keyword, the higher is the traffic and audience it is likely to receive, and therefore higher are the chances of generating sales.
What Are the Different Types of SEO?
There essentially exist four different types of SEO which include:
I. On-page SEO
On-page SEO is best defined as any SEO efforts directed towards optimizing the content on your website. This includes assessing and applying relevant keywords, adding appropriate meta titles and meta descriptions, adding relevant images, and providing good quality content. In addition, on-page SEO efforts typically contribute towards helping search engine crawlers navigate through your web pages smoothly, which in turn helps improve your SEO score significantly.
II. Off-page SEO
Off-page SEO typically includes all SEO efforts that do not take place on your website. The most integral part of off-page SEO includes link building, which is the practice of getting well-known and high authority websites to link back to your website and web pages. Guest posting is by far the most popular way of doing so, which essentially means that you post blogs on websites and online publications that allow posts from guests on an occasional or regular basis.
III. Local SEO
Local SEO refers to SEO efforts that are directed locally rather than nationally. Companies that engage in local SEO look to improve their reach in their local communities and target audiences rather than focusing on national-level customer bases.
IV. Technical SEO
Technical SEO refers to SEO efforts directed towards making the search engine crawler’s experience on your website smoother. These efforts include improving website speed, making your website mobile-friendly, and improving site structure by featuring a consistent URL structure and internal links.
How to Create an SEO Strategy?
To create an effective SEO strategy, marketers and entrepreneurs should consider the following steps:
I. Assess Your Current SEO Efforts
If you cannot analyze where your website stands currently, it can get challenging to create an effective SEO strategy for the future. To do so, you may have to measure your organic visibility, check for keyword rankings, and try to analyze where your website traffic comes from.
II. Analyze Relevant Competitor’s SEO Strategy
It is an essential proposition to check for your best competitor’s SEO strategy. This is because your new strategy should aim to outdo your best competitor and achieve a higher ranking on search engine results. To do so, you may first need to compile a list of your best competitors, map their organic traffic, assess the keyword data they apply, and then find a keyword gap between you and your competitors. This would help you realize where you lack and how you can further improve.
III. Set SEO Goals
To put together an effective SEO strategy, you need to set the goals and KPIs you expect to achieve from your SEO efforts. Once you know where you wish to end up, creating a strategy to define your journey would be a practical approach. At the same time, goals can be defined as when your wish to end up as a result of your efforts; KPIs can be understood as the metrics or the indicators used to measure your performance towards those goals.
IV. Analyze Appropriate Keywords
Once you have done your primary homework, you should develop relevant and popular keywords that relate to your company and your product the most. To arrive at relevant keywords, in addition to analyzing your competition’s efforts, you should also attempt to understand your ideal customer’s approach towards looking for relevant products, services, or information on search engines.
V. Build an On-Page SEO Strategy
As explained above, your on-page SEO strategy should focus on optimizing the elements within your web pages. You will have to optimize your web page’s title tags, meta descriptions, internal links and create heading for content in terms of H1, H2, and H3. To understand where you lack on-page SEO, you may seek help from an SEO company or use online tools that provide recommendations.
VI. Build an Off-Page SEO Strategy
Google’s algorithm places a heavy emphasis on backlinks, and hence you should invest considerable SEO efforts towards off-page SEO. While this is the most challenging component of an SEO strategy, it is also the most rewarding and beneficial.
VII. Build a Technical SEO Strategy
You may have to look for and then rectify technical SEO issues on your website to improve its performance and SEO ranking. Once again, for this purpose, you may use an online auditing tool or seek help from a professional SEO company or SEO expert accordingly. This may include making your website mobile-friendly, improving URL structures, making its format sleeker, etc.
While SEO may seem like a daunting task to someone who isn’t familiar with its workings, it is, in fact, a gratifying and engaging activity for marketers. Since the benefits of organic SEO are long-lasting, the results may require some time. Marketers and entrepreneurs must recognize that good SEO requires time and don’t rush.