A Beginners Guide to Search Engine Optimisation
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) does not have to be complicated, here is an SEO Guide to help you gain a basic understanding of Search Engine Optimisation and help you get started and improve your positions on the search engines.
Is it important to build a website in a certain way?
YES, the way a website is built is a crucial factor in determining how it performs in the search engine rankings. Every Search Engine has their own way of indexing websites, pages, content and keywords. Search engines use “Spiders” and “Search Bots” which crawl through each website submitted to them. If your website isn’t optimised correctly, these search bots and spiders cant crawl your site properly and will therefore limit your rank within the search engines.
What are Keywords and Keyword Phrases. Are they important?
Keywords are the words and phrases typed into a search engine by a user. All variations of keywords and phrases are searched for and some are very highly competed for. The key is to identify those that are worth competing for and those that are not. It is also a good idea to identify keywords and phrases that are relatively uncompetitive, tapping into these will generate good, extra volumes of traffic.
What are Meta-Tags and why are they important?
They are information inserted into the “head” area of your web pages. The most valuable feature Meta Tags offer you is the ability to control how your web pages are described by some search engines and they also offer the ability to prevent pages from being indexed at all. Remember it is important not to duplicate Meta Data on each of your websites pages, such as Title Tags and Meta Descriptions.
What is Link Building and why is it important to get the right kind of links?
Link building is the practice of increasing the amount of quality links from external websites to your own website. The more quality or authority links you have linking back to your website the higher a search engine will rate your sites “importance or authority” for a particularly keyword or phrase. By ‘quality / authority’ i mean links that are from websites that are both relevant to your site and relevant to the keywords that you are targeting and the user searches for, and which have a good page rank.
It is also vital to remember that link building is not all about building as many links as possible, a handful of ‘quality / authority’ links are much more valuable than having hundreds of links from lower authority / lower ranked sites. Beware of those link building services that offer thousands of links for allow one off fee. Google, Bing and Yahoo will penalise your site for using these link farms and as a result you will either receive a drastic drop in the search results or be completely removed from the search ranking. Building quality inbound links is a time consuming and ongoing process and needs to be carefully done. Be patient, find the right links and you will quickly find your site moving up the rankings.
What does SERP’s mean?
SERP’s stands for Search Engine Results Page, it is the page that you see when you search for a word or phrase. In the SERP’s page you will see various website listings with relevance to the words or phrase you have searched for.
What are Spiders and Search Bots?
Spiders and Search Bots are programs / automated scripts that Search Engines use to look through the Internet and index websites and their pages. The process is often referred to as web crawling or spidering. Web Crawlers generate a copy of the visited web pages for later processing by the search engine that will download the indexed pages providing us with faster searches.
What does SEO and SEM stand for? and what’s the difference?
SEO stands for search engine optimisation. It is the practice of making sure that a website is easily found on the “Natural / Organic” search results for a particular keyword / phrase on the search engines. SEM stands for Search Engine Marketing. Its the practice of ensuring that a website is easily found by relevant visitors within all the major search engines for a particular keyword / phrase and within all their search results on both “Paid” and “Natural / Organic” results.
What are the key benefits of a well planned and conducted Natural/Organic Search Campaign?
Achieving high organic search listings is the most important aspect of search engine optimisation. The benefit of having a website optimised at the top of the search results for a large number of keywords is the best way to receive high volumes of relevant traffic. High traffic equals high conversions, more sales and more leads. The amount of SEO which is needed to achieve high organic positions is different, depending on how competitive your desired keywords and phrases are.
What is the difference between “Natural / Organic” Search results and “Paid” Search results?
Natural / Organic Search refers to all the results within a search engine that are not adverts that pay to appear there but are displayed due to their relevance to the search term, which has been typed in. Paid Search refers to paid for adverts that appear within the results of the search engine, these are usually separated down the right hand side of the results page and at the top of the page.
What are the benefits of a well panned and conducted Pay-Per-Click Search Campaign?
There are huge benefits from having a well planned and conducted paid campaign. Users that click on paid listings are usually towards the end of the decision making process, it provides instant traffic to your website and you can target keywords that your website is not in the results for the Natural / Organic listings. Remember you only pay when someone clicks on your listing, you can set a daily budget and also control which time of the day or night you wish your paid listing to appear.
Following the techniques in this guide will give you a good head start in getting your website working better on Google, Yahoo and Bing. Good luck.