Because we provide SEO in Sheffield we get tons of people asking the same questions: What is it? How can I use it to be ranked higher in Google? and so forth. This is why we have created this Demystifying SEO series. Each article we will focus on a specific question as submitted by our readers and we will attempt to extend your knowledge in a working matter that will allow you to actively improve your websites reach and get that desired effect: More business, higher earning and a wider customer base.
In this first article we are going to over some of the basics:
What is SEO?
SEO which stands for Search Engine Optimization is an online based methodology that is used to attract traffic to your website by making your website visible in search engine results. Being visible does not mean whether or not you show up in the results, being visible in the context of SEO is actually getting people to click on your link and appear as close to the top as possible. To do this, we recommend being on the first page of Google. Whilst you may get clicks for being on page 2/3 you will not get nearly as many as being in the top 10 results.
This can be achieved by Organic or Paid Techniques. As a Sheffield SEO Business, we can offer this for you. There are many ways that we implement SEO, such as using relevant keywords, quality content, and optimal multimedia content on your web pages and many more. We shall discuss these techniques in this series.
Before various and forceful attempts by google to sanitize the SEO world from the countless spam, people implemented search engine optimization using ‘underhand techniques’ referred to as Black Hat SEO. These techniques are not only harmful but can risk your site being removed from Google and other major search engines altogether. Therefore, SEO is kind of a science, an art form that has a constant changing object of study. This is why it is essential to get a trusted SEO Specialist like PineGreen. Google has laid out Starter SEO guidelines that must be adhered to, to ensure that site owners use appropriate tactics to implement their SEO strategy.
Benefits of SEO
Search Engine Optimization should not be seen as cost. But as a much needed investment. An investment that will impart great benefits with you overtime. Many people think that with SEO you will see results instantly and this is not the case. If any company tells you that they are going to provide you with superb SEO and you will see extensive results within a month then quite frankly they are not worth their weight in salt, or their position in the rankings.
There are many benefits of SEO, Here are just a few of the most important reasons why search engine optimization is important:
Long Lasting Rankings and Results
With some approaches to SEO like Pay-Per-Click you will undoubtedly get to the top of the SERP (Search Engine Results Page) however the moment that you stop paying you will lose that cherished position. This is not the same for results that have organically gained their position through a carefuly planned SEO strategy.
Credible Branding and marketing
As I mentioned earlier, Google set out their guidelines which help promote a standard of design and development as well as usability. In addition, the “content is king” paradigm encourages fresh content and engaging users, resulting in conversion optimization. As traffic increases, so will the credibility of your website. The more credibility that your site has the higher you will rank in the SERP.
Beat your competitors
In the online world of business it is important to stay ahead and beat your competitors and this is why you need a highly skilled SEO company that can not only do research for your company but also analyze your competitors. With this information you can then plan your SEO strategy.
Here at PineGreen we use a plethora of enterprise grade SEO tools which help us study the the statistical data about various aspects of your business and your competitors’ business. Some of these techniques are analyzing certain keywords, localization factors, and traffic analytics.
Black-Hat SEO vs. White-Hat SEO
Black-hat SEO is usually referred to as extremely deceptive, unwanted and nuisance causing SEO. Google are super strict with this and it is vital that you either do your own research or hire a team that can make sure they do not break any of the rules. Google themselves are getting smarter and smarter every day and they are penalizing tons of spam posters and websites.
Do not fall prey to bad SEO techniques. Hire an SEO Specialist to help you with this. In the long run it will not only save you money but help you gain more. Once you are penalized by Google it is almost impossible to get back in their good graces.
It goes without saying that PineGreen DO NOT use any black hat SEO techniques.
White-Hat SEO, as you can guess is the opposite and is focused primarily on using organic SEO techniques to help your site rank higher in the search results. There are many things that we use in our white hat approach, some of these are: Quality, Engaging Content, Link Building, Building the website to be error free and fast and analysing user engagement.
On-Page and Off-Page SEO
There are numerous techniques that are encapsulated in the SEO Methodology however these can be defined as either of the following two types: On Page SEO and Off Page SEO.
On-Page SEO, as you might have guessed by the name regards any factor that you can control on your website, which includes but is not limited to; semantic code, meta descriptions and keywords, internal links, site maps, page load times as well as usability and site navigation structure. Adhering to the set guidelines by Google is imperative to a websites survival on the web and even more crucial for a business to succeed and convert those visitors into business transactions.
We have created a quick image for you guys that outline some of the main factors that you want to take note of when creating your SEO Strategy:
As you may have gathered from the name, and the name of the previously mentioned “On-Page SEO”, Off-Page SEO is about all the factors which find themselves not dependent on your website. These include but are not limited to; forum postings, social media, link backs, blogs, RSS. Off Page SEO is still a vital part of your long term strategy as this allows people to access your website from other avenues such as their favorite websites or friends tweets etc… However, a word of warning. Google, Since their penguin update have started to penalize and actually remove listing from their site if you just spam, spam and spam. The first and foremost thing to remember with Off Page SEO is providing quality, relevant link backs that match your industry and requirements and the content of your website.
For example, lets say that I have a website for an Accountancy Firm and I spam hundreds of links for Accountancy SEO to all sorts of sites like florists and ice cream parlous and across hundreds of different sites. Whilst these may get a few click throughs Google will see this and think, oh, why is this accountancy firm getting linked from flower websites, or ice cream shops? It will automatically penalize you for this as they are not relevant.
Here are the main focuses of Off Page SEO:
In this article we have rather succinctly discussed the concepts involved within the SEO Methodology including the advantages of incorporating SEO into your project. You should now understand the basics of SEO implementation and feel more confidently moving forward.
As mentioned before, PineGreen, being SEO and Web Design Specialists based in Sheffield can help you achieve higher rankings and ultimately more customers. We use a huge range of SEO strategies and tools and this can help you get ahead of your competitors. Check out our SEO services for more information