There was a time when Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO, was easy-peasy. Digital marketers could just throw a website online, fill it with keywords, and watch the clicks roll in. In 2019, though, it’s a very different picture. If you’re new to the world of digital marketing, and in need of an SEO primer, our quick guide will be right up your alley.
Part 1: The absolute basics
Let’s start at the beginning: what exactly is SEO?
In a nutshell, Search Engine Optimisation refers to a stable of techniques and strategies designed to improve a website’s position in the search engine results pages (SERPs).
As the biggest search engine, Google is generally the target for most SEO activity. SEO strategies usually focus on specific keywords, which are the terms a person may use to search for a website – for example, “golf shoes” or “lawyers in the UK”. The aim is to achieve a high ranking for these keywords and related words and phrases.
Part 2: On-page SEO
SEO can be broken down into a couple of categories, so let’s start with “on-page” SEO. This refers to anything you do on the website to improve its rank in the eyes of Google. Websites will optimise their page titles, the headings within the web content (i.e. H1 and H2 tags), as well as “metadata”, which is information placed in a website’s source code.
Metadata is used to show descriptions on results pages and to provide the search engine with deeper info about the website. One of the most important aspects of on-page SEO is content, which is the written text on the page. This should be written in a way which naturally incorporates keywords – “stuffing” these words and phrases is no longer an effective strategy and may get a site penalised.
Part 3: Off-page SEO
The final piece to the SEO puzzle is “off-page” SEO. This refers to strategies a digital marketing specialist may deploy outside of the site itself. For example, “backlinks” are a time-tested SEO strategy whereby your content proves so compelling that other sites want to link to it. When this happens, search engines see it and thus give your site a small boost in rankings. As backlinks grow, so too will the site’s prominence in the SERPs.
This very quick primer on SEO only really scratches the surface. If you’d like to know more about how SEO could boost your business, get in touch with the Real Internet team today – firstname.lastname@example.org.
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