Welcome to the journey of learning SEO.
I know most of us to think that learning and performing SEO is difficult, but believe me, if you read this guide carefully you will get an idea about SEO and can start doing it.
To perform SEO is not a big deal. It is just we have to understand the basics.
So, what are we waiting for? Let’s start learning SEO.
Let us start learning how we can keep our SEO content on the first page of big search engines like Google.
What is SEO?
SEO or Search Engine Optimization in simpler terms, if I have to explain to you, is the technique of increasing traffic to your website, thereby attracting more visitors.
You can get this by managing your websites and contents inside the website in an organized way.
SEO acts as a liaison between you as a website creator and visitors.
By now, you must be excited to know how is this possible?
Let us understand its importance.
What makes SEO so important?
You can lose your visitors if your website is not optimized.
SEO is very important because to attract visitors your website must be displayed at the top and this can be achieved by practicing good SEO.
You not only attract visitors but also better the user experience, which in turn forces visitors to visit your website multiple times
If you understand the workings of SEO as mentioned in this guide, I guarantee that it will help you better your ranking on these search engines with fewer efforts and reduced cost.
What is On-Page and Off-Page SEO and how it can help you?
Suppose you have to optimize different parts of your website that can have an impact on your search engine rankings. On-page SEO helps you to take care of this.
In simpler words, it takes care of all the things that you do on your websites like the title of the page, internal linking, and descriptions, meta descriptions, speed of website, responsiveness, URL structure, headings, etc.
It occurs outside of your website and refers to page ranking factors such as backlinks from another site.
You have less control over this.
It consists of link-building which is accomplished through various factors like guest blogging, outreach, participating in forums, and leaving comments on blogs.
How big search engines function?
I want to tell you that the big search engines like google, Mozilla, etc. are blessed with modern bots.
These bots have a tendency to creep over the webpages on the internet.
The speed with which these bots operate is beyond our imagination.
After creeping over the webpages on the internet, they store and display data whenever it is searched for by any visitors.
Search engines can be categorized into 3 parts – Crawling, Indexing, and Returning Query
So, we will now understand all three of them in little detail, which will help you to understand how the search engines work.
As you learned above that search engines have modern bots. They send these bots to find content on the internet.
These bots have the capability to crawl one web page and analyze the code present there.
Once they find some links on that particular web page, they start following that link and enter another web page.
This process continues.
We call these crawlers spiders because of their tendency of creeping webpages.
So here you have to understand that good SEO practice will make the work of this bot easier in crawling and finding content for what you have searched for.
You should know that the job of these software crawlers is to scan the internet and find the servers hosting websites.
Do you know that on average, there are thousands of new pages published on the internet, on a daily basis, and there are more than 130 trillion individual pages on the internet today?
You can imagine the work that these bots are doing.
Once contents are found, then data is taken out from those contents and stored in a database. So as a visitor when you search for something, it is then retrieved from the database and displayed to you.
Now here’s the funny part: These spiders do not see the web page as we human do
They view the source code of your webpage.
You can try it by yourself
Right-click on any website that you like and check the source code. The source code visible to you is similar to what these spiders see.
You must be thinking why to care about the indexing process?
One thing you should keep in mind here that if your website is not available in their index, it will not show for any of the searches.
This means that more the pages you have in the search engine indexes, the higher is your chances of appearing at the top when someone types a query.
Notice that I mentioned the word ‘appear in the search results’, which means in any position and not necessarily on the top positions or pages.
In order to appear in the first 5 positions of the SERP, you have to optimize your website for search engines using a process called SEO in short.
It is the part where your SEO efforts pay off.
We learned in indexing that contents are searched and stored in a database. Now, by using certain innovative techniques, the results are displayed to you.
They use a certain algorithm for retrieving data from the database, thereby displaying it to visitors.
Sad to say, but I do not know what is the criteria for prioritization that the Google algorithm performs.
How to revamp my website?
We learned about crawling and indexing.
So, the next important thing is your URL.
URL is the first thing that search engines recognize and is also considered one of the factors for ranking.
Adding a target keyword in your URL will lift your limpidity in the search results.
So, don’t worry if it sounds scary, I am going to explain 11 ways by which you can optimize your websites.
You should analyze all of your website data
A single piece of data might not tell you everything, but when you collect lots of data, you start to notice patterns.
If some people visit your site and fail to click on your CTA, you might not have a problem.
You have to understand that if a huge number of people are ignoring your CTA, then you need to make some adjustments to it.
Google Search Console helps you in understanding that.
Google Search Console helps you to track the number of sessions, several unique sessions, and the bounce rate.
Try to analyze the data for some specific patterns.
You can refer to sources that can tell you the user behavior when they are on your website.
You have to look for pages that get more traffic and more conversations than others. Examine those pages and replicate it across your site.
Understanding keywords that people are searching for
There are a lot of different ways that people search for your products, brand, or services.
So, it is very important to understand how visitors are trying to reach you.
Once you know this, you can enhance your content according to the keywords. Isn’t it interesting?
You can either use the hit and trial method or popular tools available on the internet which helps you in keyword research.
So, Google Trends is the best option that shows you how popular is a keyword.
You can see that there is an option to compare and you can compare the results based on last 12 months search, past day, past 7 day and so on.
The biggest drawback of this tool is that you will never come to know about the magnitude of the queries.
I will suggest that you give a try on Keyword explorer tool that is available on ahrefs.com
A demo is also available for you to be familiar with the tool.
Another popular keyword research tool known as LongTailPro helps you to find the best keywords that you can use to drive more traffic and generate revenue in whatever methods you choose
There is another popular tool called SEMrush which helps you in keyword research, analysis of your competitor, and Google Ad campaign optimization.
Creating impactful content
Let me tell you the key to effective SEO is comprehensive and in-depth content.
While creating content, you have to focus on the quality of content from the searchers' perspective. It is important that it is relevant and at the same time keeps your audience engaged.
So How can you create such content?
The answer to the above is to make your articles detailed with correct information and at least 3000 words.
According to research done by backlinko.com, the longer the content the more is the chances of winning SEO.
You have to spend some time analyzing search intent and make sure you give people what they are looking for.
If you want more knowledge on how to create good content, you can visit the below website
You should have a captivating title
So far, we have discussed how you can rank a webpage for popular keywords. But did you know that just ranking isn’t enough? The searcher should actually click on your webpage.
So, your next task should be to make your title as click-worthy as possible.
Now let’s look at the actual google result when I searched for “how to generate leads”.
If you will ask me personally, then I would definitely click the first one as it is showing me step by step how I can generate sales lead for my business.
Most of the searchers belong to a small business group and they come on internet to look for ways to generate leads for their sales.
Do not worry, there is no exact technique to write such compelling title tags and descriptions, but it's about understanding your target audience and knowing what is significant to them.
Personally, I can suggest you that be honest, make it descriptive, include keywords, and check the length of your title.
You can check the limit of your title you can visit the below website.
Speed of the website
One of the important website ranking factors on search engines is the speed of the website.
Imagine you are searching for something and came across a website. You found it worthy and clicked the link, but that page took time to load.
In this scenario, you lose interest.
So, you have to make sure that visitors are not losing interest because your website is taking time to load.
Images can be optimized by using tools like GTmetrix. After optimizing the images, you can see that the time your page is taking to load decreases.
Also, you can use Google Page Speed to check your website performance.
If you want to optimize the speed of your website on mobile, then I will suggest you use AMP
Keep your URL short and illustrative
You can keep your URL short and structured in many ways, like wherever possible you can use single domain and sub-domain, it should be readable, keywords should be included, etc.
Let’s assume that you have written an unclear URL for your blog post and there is another blog that has written a simple and clear URL, then believe me search engines consider the simple ones.
So, what are we waiting for? Let’s optimize your URL for search engines.
For more details on how you can keep your URL short and descriptive, I will suggest that you read the article published on the below website.
You should optimize your images
It sounds a little boring but you need to enhance your images.
Alt tags help you to enhance all the images. You can also use any image optimizer tool available on the internet.
I have shown an example below. One important point that you should keep in mind is to name your images, which will help search engines to understand the images better.
Apart from the above one, you can also use tinypng.com to optimize your images for free.
Your content should be easily readable
I would recommend you optimize your title and image tags, but at the same time, you should keep in mind the user experience.
You can use <h1>, <h2> and <h3> tags in your web pages.
I am giving you an example of a heading structure.
H1: Online shopping is great
H2: Why Online shopping is great?
H3: It is a convenient and safe way of shopping
H2: How to do online shopping?
You have to place your keywords within these header tags in a planned way.
Below are additional tips from my side that you can use to make your content readable.
- You can use formatting like paragraphs and lists to break up huge chunks of copy
- I would suggest you not use big words.
- You can use tools like Hemingway, which will help you to analyze your copy.
Importance of Backlinks
Let me tell you backlinks are very important.
So firstly, let me tell you what is a backlink?
It is basically a link from some other website to that web resource. In simpler words, it is a link created when one website links to another.
The more is the quality of backlinks the higher are your chances of ranking a page and the more search traffic you will get.
You can check backlinks from Ahrefs Backlink Checker
You have to enter the URL as shown below image.
After clicking on the check backlink, you will get the details on the next page.
Longer content helps you earn more backlinks
You just learned that backlinks are very important.
You get more backlinks when you have long-form content.
Search engines like Google know that you do not like to search for bits and pieces of information, thereby finding information from a lot of places with difficulties.
Long-form content has a higher likelihood of providing the answers that users are searching for, without forcing them to perform research every time.
To keep it simple, I would say that the XML sitemap maintains the list of URLs.
It guides the search engines in finding content.
Search engines like Google take help from sitemap and find pages that are relevant for your website which proves that they are an intelligent crawler.
You can create a sitemap from XML-Sitemaps.com.
Internal linking and anchor text
You can visualize anchor text as a text in a hyperlink.
We often see it but not aware of its significance with respect to SEO.
I must tell you that the keywords present in the anchored text are very important in improving SEO and uplifting the content of your webpages.
Mobile Search Engine Optimization
If you want mobile users to engage with your website and be a trustworthy customer, then believe me you have to invest in mobile SEO.
Like SEO for websites, mobile SEO is the process of optimizing your website so that it looks great and functions properly on mobile devices.
Mobile SEO is important because people spend 70% of their internet time on mobile.
You should check whether your website is mobile-friendly or not
The best way as per me is to test mobile-friendliness is to use Google's mobile page testing tool.
You can either search for the mobile-friendly test on Google or go directly to their website.
Tips for creating an effective mobile SEO strategy
1. You have to improve your website's load time.
2. You have to integrate your website into a responsive design so that your website adapts to any device a user uses.
3. You should keep your maximum focus on user experience.
4. You should adapt to local searches by using local keywords, for example, phrases like “near me”.
5. You should implement a clean and easy to use the navigation bar
6. Since mobile users look for information fast, they will often use your title tag and meta descriptions to determine if they should click on your listing.
7. You can create a separate mobile URL which will help you to create a customer experience for people who visit your website through mobile devices.
Does SEO help in improving Conversions?
So, till now we have understood how you can improve optimization, but you might have a question in mind that what about tuning?
Believe me, you cannot see the consequences straight away.
The amount of information that is present on the internet makes it time taking. So, work smartly to improve the quality of your content and see to it that you are attracting backlinks.
So, what are you waiting for? Start thinking about the conversions.
If you enhance your site properly, then you can see the high conversion rate to your website in spite of the low website usage.
SEO directs the correct visitors to webpages, thereby improving the conversion rate.
If the intent of the page is clear, search engines can rank it correctly based on the query that visitors are looking for.
Articles that contain value and are longer will increase your chances of attracting visitors to your website.
Optimize your website for getting conversions
To get conversions you have to work intelligently on the UX/UI part of your website.
In simpler words, user experience describes the experience of a person visiting your website and how smoothly uses the functionality present in your website.
Visitors will be satisfied and at the same time appreciate your website if the user experience is good.
You have to focus on the minute features. For example, test each and every element present in your webpage which on removing can have an impact on the experience of your visitor.
You can ask yourself a question yourself that if small elements in websites are removed then will it impact the journey of a visitor?
If it is not impacting, you should remove it. Give a lot of attention to pull the traffic towards the correct intent of your website.
Believe me, it is not a difficult activity to perform SEO. It is very easy to understand and perform if you have gone through the above guide properly.
Let me tell you that you don’t need to invest in paid tools to begin. You can use the above step-by-step guide for doing basic SEO on your website.
I am glad that you made it to the end.
I hope this post gives you enough background information as well as some tips to start your SEO journey. I would like to know how this guide helped you and how you made progress on your SEO journey.