SEO basics | What is it, and why pay it any attention?

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So, you’ve got your internet marketing strategy in place: the website you want; the social media platforms you’ll be targeting with your business accounts set up on each… But now you hear about including SEO into that plan everything goes live.

So your first question is, what is SEO? And your second question is, how much can SEO help me run a successful business? Here we answer both…

Understanding SEO

As the name suggests, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the changes you make to your website or a webpage to gain more organic visibility, traffic and engagement.

In other words, they’re improvements you make to help push your page up the ranks of a search engine result page for a given keyword.

These strategies focus on making search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.) better understand what you do and the value you offer. So that when an internet user searches for keywords related to your business or organisation, they will easily find you in the list of potential solutions.

Who should be concerned about SEO?

The short answer? Every business or charity organisation.

SEO matters. If you own a website or a landing page, chances are you want people to discover it, visit it, and interact with the content you have on it.

As such, you need SEO to make sure your page shows up in their search results; gets their attention, and retains it! Sound like a tall order? A good SEO strategy can help you achieve these three targets.

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How does SEO work?

To understand how SEO works, you need to know how search engines like Google work.

Search engines have a lot of bots (crawlers). Think of them as millions of automated minions. These bots visit online websites and platforms, including social networks, to gather all the available data from the technical side to the end-user side.

These pieces of information allow search engines to understand what a website does, where to group it, and how to rank it in that group (called Indexing).

You can imagine all this as a library of websites and other online destinations with a librarian (the search engine algorithm).

So, when an internet user searches for “DIY make your car scratch resistant,” the search engine’s algorithm goes through its collection (library/database) to fish out the websites and pages that will most likely satisfy the searchers’ needs.

Now, when it comes to website ranking on a result page (SERP), there’re many factors search engines consider. SEO helps you tick the right boxes to appear high on the recommendation list.

Why is SEO important?

At this point, it’s clear that SEO is a vital part of your online marketing success. But aside from visibility, here are three other ways SEO can play a crucial role in the growth of your business:

1. SEO impacts conversion

So, you’ve managed to place your website on the first page of a search engine’s result page (a paid advert can do that). Does that get you conversions – ie sales, customer list building, sign-ups etc.?

SEO touches on critical conversion elements of your website. These include:

– The loading speed.

– The page design.

– Structure.

– Navigation.

– Call to action buttons.

It impacts the general surfing experience – to leave the right impression on visitors, encouraging them to convert.

2. SEO impacts brand awareness

SEO also increases the number of people who learn of your brand, trust it, and follow it. Content quality (value) is a part of any good SEO strategy. Search engines prioritise the same metric when listing solutions to their users.

So, the more quality you offer your visitors, the better the impression you leave on them and the search engine that recommended you to them. This, in turn, pushes your affected page up the result page ranking and boosts your website authority.

3. SEO helps you beat the competition

As your website page authority rises, these search engines start to see your page as the go-to destination for value. So, when a user searches for your business-related keywords, the algorithm includes your tailored content among the top recommended sites.

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    Frequently asked questions

    • There are four types of SEO. In this article, we explore each one and look at how they impact your online business goals.

    • As your business moves towards your goals, you want to ensure it remains on the right track and improves in specific areas to ensure success. Here is what your checklist should contain.

    • Great question! SEO is a big part of your online business. It’s also a lot of work and definitely not something you can do without a plan in place. Here are some steps which can help.

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