Here are 90 Digital, we’re often asked what SEO is, and if our prospects truly need it to stand out online. Our answer is almost always yes, and that isn’t just because we’re a digital marketing agency with SEO at its core. If you are serious about using the power of digital to grow your business and/or brand, it is almost certainly worth strong consideration.
What is SEO?
Search engine optimisation, also known as SEO, is a way to increase the quality of your website traffic by improving your SERP performance, or search engine results page performance. For example, if you are a digital marketing agency in London, you more than likely want more digital marketing clients, right? Therefore, you’ll likely want to be a search result for the Google (or another search engine, such as Bing or Yahoo) search for “Digital marketing agency London”.
Search engines use algorithms, a fancy word for computing formulas, to determine what websites are shown to those searching various words or phrases, known as keywords. There are many elements that are taken into account when determining what website will be shown first, second, third, etc., in a SERP.
Depending on the marketer you ask, you’ll get different ways of splitting up the various SEO elements. We tend to focus on technical, on-site and off-site. This means that these are the three elements that we drill down to optimise your search engine ranking.
Why is SEO so important?
Before we get into the different types of SEO, it is worth understanding why SEO is important, from a general perspective.
Every day, there are hundreds of millions of search engine searches, and millions of users using search engines. People look for answers to burning questions, recommendations for a variety of things and solutions to their problems. If you offer a service or product that could make someone’s life easier, you could show up in a search engine search – if you optimise your website correctly.
Types of SEO
As mentioned above, there are many ways of separating out the various components that contribute to a good SEO strategy. We prefer to segment them by on- and off-site activities.
This element makes sure that search engines can crawl and index your website without any issues – essentially meaning that search engines can effectively read the content of your website and understand what the site is about, so it can show it in relevant searches. Read more about Technical SEO.
This element ensures that your website’s content is search-engine friendly. For instance, this means making sure that you have high-quality site content, and that the content is broken down well so that search engines can effectively understand the content on your page.
Believe it or not, the way that your website shows up on other websites affects your SERP. Having links from other websites that lead to your website (also known as backlinking) can really help build your site’s credibility in the eyes of a search engine, for example.
Will SEO help my business grow?
Being listed on a search engine first and foremost shows that your company is reputable. It is, quite simply put, a sign of quality and good reputation.
There are other benefits, however.
SEO helps people who are actively searching for your product or service to find you. Whether they’re searching for Valentino boots, succulents, management training programmes or something else, if you are listed as a result, you’ll get a high-quality lead to your website.
A few important facts
Below are a few important facts about SEO that you should know and consider when starting to think about your SEO strategy.
- Google is the world’s largest search engine, owning about 75% market share. YouTube is the second biggest search engine. Other search engines, such as Bing, Yahoo and Baidu, make up 25% combined.
- Most people with access to the internet worldwide visit Google at least once a day – if not more.
- Good SEO=quality user experience (UX). If your website is optimised for search, this also means it is optimised with a site visitor in mind. Quality headers, page interlinking, site speed and more typically lead to a better experience for someone using your website – and these are all factors that contribute to better SERPs. In addition, Google now knows how to interpret favourable and unfavourable site experiences, dinging websites that have poor user engagement, so the better your on-site UX, the better your SERP.
- SEO is relatively cheap – but it’s a long game. Unlike online advertising, where you’re paying per goal conversion, SEO doesn’t cost anything but time and perhaps outsourcing to do effectively. When you turn off an ad, you stop showing up in results – but if you ace it with SEO, you’ll show up as long as you stay on top of your SEO game. That being said, unlike ads, it isn’t as easy as setting up a campaign and being shown. It takes time to build a quality SEO strategy, but once it is implemented, the effects can last for years.
- SEO best practices are always being updated. New algorithm updates, smarter machine learning technologies and user feedback are just a few of the reasons why SEO is always changing. To stay on top of things, you’ll have to read widely and often – or hire someone who can stay on top of things for you.
SEO can help you build more brand recognition, reputation and ultimately customers and revenue for your business. It is a long-term but ultimately effective and relatively inexpensive way to make your business known on the web.
Have further questions on SEO, or want to learn more about how you can improve your site’s rankings? Get in touch and we’ll chat about it with you.