What is SEO?
A simple definition of SEO – search engine optimization in 2015 is that it is a technical and creative process to improve the visibility of a website in search engines, with the aim of driving more potential customers to it.
This is a beginner’s guide to effective white hat seo. I deliberately steer clear of techniques that might be ‘grey hat’, as what is grey today is often ‘black hat’ tomorrow, as far as Google is concerned.
No one page guide can explore this complex topic in full. What you’ll read here is how I approach the basics – and these are the basics – as far as I remember them. At least – these are answers to questions I had when I was starting out in this field. And things have changed since I started this company in 2006.
Google insists webmasters adhere to their ‘rules’ and aims to reward sites with high quality content and remarkable ‘white hat’ web marketing techniques with high rankings. Conversely it also needs to penalise web sites that manage to rank in Google by breaking these rules.
These rules are not laws, only guidelines, for ranking in Google; laid down by Google. You should note that some methods of ranking in Google are, in fact, actually illegal. Hacking, for instance, is illegal.
You can choose to follow and abide by these rules, bend them or ignore them – all with different levels of success (and levels of retribution, from Google’s web spam team). White hats do it by the ‘rules’; black hats ignore the ‘rules’.
What you read in this article is perfectly within the laws and within the guidelines and will help you increase the traffic to your website through organic, or natural search engine results pages (SERPS).
While there are a lot of definitions of SEO (spelled Search engine optimisation in the UK, Australia and New Zealand, or search engine optimization in the United States and Canada) organic SEO in 2015 is mostly about getting free traffic from Google, the most popular search engine in the world (and the only game in town in the UK):
The guide you are reading is for the more technical minded.
The art of web seo is understanding how people search for things, and understanding what type of results Google wants to (or will) display to it’s users. It’s about putting a lot of things together to look for opportunity.
A good optimiser has an understanding of how search engines like Google generate their natural SERPS to satisfy users’ NAVIGATIONAL, INFORMATIONALand TRANSACTIONAL keyword queries.
A good search engine marketer has a good understanding of the short term and long term risks involved in optimising rankings in search engines, and an understanding of the type of content and sites Google (especially) WANTS to return in it’s natural SERPS.
The aim of any campaign is increased visibility in search engines.
There are rules to be followed or ignored, risks to be taken, gains to be made, and battles to be won or lost.
A Mountain View spokesman once called the search engine ‘kingmakers‘, and that’s no lie.
Ranking high in Google is VERY VALUABLE – it’s effectively ‘free advertising’ on the best advertising space in the world.
Traffic from Google natural listings is STILL the most valuable organic traffic to a website in the world, and it can make or break an online business.
The state of play STILL is that you can generate your own highly targeted leads, for FREE, just by improving your website and optimising your content to be as relevant as possible for a customer looking for your company, product or service.
As you can imagine, there’s a LOT of competition now for that free traffic – even from Google (!) in some niches.
The process can successfully practiced in a bedroom or a workplace, but it has traditionally involved mastering many skills as they arose including diverse marketing technologies including but not limited to:
- website design
- user experience
- website development
- php, html, css etc
- server management
- domain management
- back link analysis
- keyword research
- social media promotion
- software development
- analytics and data analysis
- information architecture
- looking at Google for hours on end
It takes a lot, in 2015, to rank on merit a page in Google in competitive niches, and the stick Google is hitting every webmaster with (at the moment, and for the foreseeable future) is the ‘QUALITY USER EXPERIENCE‘ stick.
If you expect to rank in Google in 2015, you’d better have a quality offering, not based entirely on manipulation, or old school tactics.
Is a visit to your site a good user experience? If not – beware MANUAL QUALITY RATERS and BEWARE the GOOGLE PANDA algorithm which is looking for signs of poor user experience and low quality content.
Google raising the ‘quality bar’ ensures a higher level of quality in online marketing in general (above the very low quality we’ve seen over the last years).
Success online involves HEAVY INVESTMENT in on page content, website architecture, usability, conversion to optimisation balance, and promotion.
If you don’t take that route, you’ll find yourself chased down by Google’s algorithms at some point in the coming year.
This ‘what is seo’ guide is not about churn and burn type of Google seo (called webspam to Google).
Article Provided By HOBO
Mojoe.net has more than 16 years of experience with SEO – search engine optimization for our customers websites. Let our team help your website reach the top 10 of Google’s online search engine. If you would like Mojoe.net to discuss developing your SEO, web security, logo, website, web application, custom programming, or need an IT consultant, please do not hesitate to call us at 864-859-9848 or you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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