According to multiple studies, around 75% of Google users don’t even reach the second page of the search results. The attention span of search engine users is just not long enough to patiently try out the next pages if they haven’t found what they were looking for immediately on the first page.
With this in mind, various factors within and outside your website can affect how easily it would be accessible to your target audience. Enter search engine optimization (SEO), a digital marketing tool for increasing online traffic and accessibility for your websites. Seattle SEO companies, for instance, employ different SEO strategies to ensure the best results for their clients.
For now, if you are new to building an effective SEO strategy for your website, here are six things you need to know to give your pages a booming head start in digital traffic.
- How search engines work – crawling, indexing, and ranking
There are many different search engines people can use in browsing the web. Some of these are Yahoo and Bing, but data shows that Google is the most popular and widely-used, with around 92% of market share worldwide, which is why it might be good for your website to be optimized for this particular search engine. It might be sufficient enough for us to discuss in this section, therefore, how Google works.
Google scours the Web to fetch data from new websites through the process called crawling. They use crawlers (also called spiders) to follow links and read sitemaps among others that lead to these websites, which will then be gathered through the next step which is called indexing, where the search engine stores all the webpages that its crawler successfully scanned to its index, a huge database where it will be made available for specific search results. After indexing, Google ranks these websites through its algorithm according to around 200 ranking factors, the most important of which are content quality, referring links, domain relevancy, site speed, and mobile usability.
- Keyword research
Using keywords that connect your webpages’ content to users’ Google queries is fundamental to your success in SEO. It is part of on-page SEO, which deals with elements within your website. In this case, you may well consider using seed keywords, which you will use in your initial keyword research. For instance, if you are running a blog about automobiles, you better include terms related to car parts and recent automobile trends as well as localized terms like “San Francisco automobiles”.
Using keyword research tools can help you determine how people usually search the Internet for topics related to your site. You can easily find keywords within the search engine results page (SERP) in Google’s features such as “People also Ask” and autocomplete. Google Trends is another website that can help you see the relative popularity of search queries you can think of.
- Where to incorporate your keywords
The next step after researching the appropriate keywords for your content is to put them in the content of your website – in the body text as well as the headings and subheadings of each webpage. However, you should beware of using them too much, for Google also detects redundancy in keyword use. Also make sure that your content, as much as it contains the right keywords, sounds natural and not forced.
Keyword use is not limited to the content of your website but also to how it appears when listed right on the SERP. The title tag and meta description, which are found in your website’s SERP entry summarizes the content of the page as it is listed in the search results, so it is a great idea to include the right keywords there to let your audience know you have what they are looking for.
Other on-page elements in which you can insert your keywords are URL, image metadata (filename, title, caption, etc.), and internal link anchor texts.
- Optimizing content for your audience
As much as keywords and ranking are important in SEO, you should always remember that you are optimizing your website for the people. With this, considering the choice of topics to write for your pages and the clarity of your content may well give your website proper attention. After all, users have a higher chance of staying on your website if they see what they want to see right away, and in a manner that is easy to understand. This, therefore, goes hand in hand with knowing your target audience. Studying the ideal approach in delivering content is what makes Seattle SEO successful.
- Off-page SEO: Link building and establishing authority
Another factor that Google considers when ranking websites is the number of backlinks from other sites, which kind of work similar to academic citations. The more links that lead from other external sites to yours, the more credible your website will be, and the higher the possibility that it will rank according to the Google algorithm. It’s also important to have trustworthy and authoritative sites mention yours instead of new, low-quality ones. Unlike on-page SEO, link building involves building networks with other websites.
- Technical SEO
As complicated as it looks, the technical aspect of SEO deals with the coding of your website. For instance, the speed of your website is important in providing traffic. According to research, 53% of mobile website visitors tend to leave if a page doesn’t open within three seconds. Technical SEO also touches website security, which can be seen in its use of the HTTPS protocol. Lastly, the most important component of technical SEO lies in the easy “crawlability” and indexing of search engines on your website.
Because of the many ranking factors of search engines, as well as the intricacies of changing marketing trends, in the end, there is no single correct SEO strategy. Amid the increasing competition and changing dynamics in Seattle SEO, this means that if you’re looking to put your site online, you would have to put your best foot forward in letting your website be known to your audience.