SEO is the optimization of a website so that it ranks as high as possible in the search engine results pages (SERPs). The two most popular search engines are Google and Bing. Search engine optimization is needed so that your website can rank for its relevant keywords at the top of these search engines. So, for example, if you have a website where you sell different types of TVs, then you’ll want your site ranking for relevant keywords such as “Samsung TVs for sale,” etc. Now, in order to make your site rank on the first spot of Google, there are many things you’ll need to do to beat competing sites that also want to rank for your site’s keywords.
In the past years, it was quite easy to rank in search engines because their algorithms weren’t as complex as they are today. In the past, you simply had to include your keyword multiple times on a page, and it would rank at the top of the search engine for that keyword. This is known as keyword stuffing. However, now, this tactic no longer works. You now have to create high-value content that is in-depth and provides value. Search engines such as Google, Yahoo, etc., are much harder to manipulate now than in the past. This is actually a good thing because it means that these search engines will provide the best results for their users.
Popularity is quite important online since the search engines are similar to the popular kids in school. This means that they won’t rank your site if other sites don’t recognize your site or talk about you. With that said, you don’t need to be the most popular site in your niche to rank highly. However, it is still very important in order for you to become visible. Now, you may be wondering, how do you increase your site’s popularity? One of the best ways is through creating backlinks. This isn’t very difficult to do and they basically work like shout-outs to your site. A backlink is when another site links to your website.
Search Engines Are Intelligent
Google and other search engines are quite intelligent and are capable of tracking information such as the length of time you remain on a website after you’ve clicked on it from their search engine results page. This is very important data, and search engines use it to determine SERP positions. For example, SEOenCostaRica.com points out that if a user wants to find out how to fix a bathroom faucet, they will likely type this into the search bar of a search engine. Then, once they click on a page but don’t find out what they’re looking for, they will likely click back on their browser. Search engines are able to determine this based on how long they spend on the page and actions done. If too many users do this, then the search engine will place another website higher on the SERPs where people are getting the answers to their questions.
A great deal of SEO isn’t about the actions you take but also the actions you don’t take. In digital marketing, there are white hat and black hat SEO strategies. The black hat SEO strategies are seen as negative due to the high level of risk and because they are against the rules of search engines. Most people who practice black hat SEO will be caught at some point. For example, one type of black hat SEO tactic is keyword stuffing. If you keyword stuff the pages on your site with the keywords you’re trying to rank for, this can cause you to get a penalty which would prevent your site from ranking on the first and second pages of the SERPs. It is even possible to get a penalty where your site doesn’t even come up in the SERPs. Other black hat strategies that you shouldn’t engage in include creating your own backlinks as well as taking content from other people’s websites and using it on your own.
This is only the start of SEO; however, it is possible to learn. If you don’t have the desire or time to learn, you can always hire an SEO (https://ahrefs.com/blog/seo-basics/) agency so they can do your SEO for you. However, be careful when choosing an SEO agency and make sure they have the right experience and qualifications.