If you run a business these days, you need to have a website. It doesn’t matter if you’re a well-known authority within your industry, or just a small mom-and-pop shop, your website is an essential part of your business.
That being said, just having a website isn’t enough. You need to have your online presence known to people within your industry and the public as a whole. The only way to do that is to implement a winning SEO strategy!
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What is SEO?
SEO or Search Engine Optimization is a process that involves making changes to your website to make it more attractive to search engines. Even though there is more than one search engine out there, Google still reigns supreme. Because of that, we’ll talk about SEO through the prism of Google’s requirements.
The Intricacies of Search Engine Optimization
What makes search engine optimization so complex isn’t the fact that you need to be a programming wizard to understand how to do it. No, it’s that you need to meet very specific requirements put in place by Google. Easy, right? Wrong!
The entire problem of SEO lies within the fact that no one knows what Google’s requirements really are. They have an algorithm in place, and the way that algorithm works is one of Google’s most valuable business secrets. SEO specialists around the world are basically presented with a highly complex puzzle without a single clue on how to solve it.
That being said, we’re far from helpless. Through trial and error, the SEO industry has managed to figure out how parts of this algorithm work. Such knowledge has allowed SEO specialists to implement strategies that would push their client’s sites to the first page of results for any set of keywords.
What Makes SEO Difficult?
Even though we know very little about what Google likes and doesn’t like, there are still plenty of other variables to account for before you can launch a site to the first page of Google results. Search engine optimization specialists from https://seojet.net/blog/anchor-text-ratio-seo/ note that proper optimization is an organic process that requires constant adjustments to both the SEO strategy and the website itself. In their experience, you constantly need to experiment with new methods and look for ways to probe Google’s existing algorithms.
There is another catch, though — the algorithms change. Google is constantly introducing changes to the way they rank websites. Each of these algorithm updates causes major disruptions in the network. Some sites are barely affected, but others can be completely destroyed in terms of traffic they get and how well they rank for specific keywords.
What Makes a Winning SEO Strategy?
Despite the complexity of the issue, there are known methods and procedures that will either give you the result you’re looking for or at least point you in the right direction. Search engine optimization requires a two-pronged strategy.
The first step is to do on-site optimization. Your site is one of the few variables you have complete control over. By ensuring that everything on your site is working towards ticking boxes on Google’s secret checklist, you’re reducing the number of variables that can negatively impact your ranking.
On-site optimization involves tweaking the website to meet several very specific requirements. For one, your site needs to be mobile-friendly. Smartphones are everywhere these days. More and more social media interaction, shopping, and web browsing are being done through smartphones.
If your site doesn’t look stellar on a phone, you will both suffer a higher bounce rate as people simply go somewhere else, and suffer Google penalties.
Another important aspect of on-site optimization comes down to improving your site’s loading speed. If your website takes more than a second to load, the chances of people simply backing out and going to another site increase drastically. Site speed is one of the most important factors when it comes to good on-site SEO. Improving site speed comes down to optimizing the images on your site, making sure that there is no bloat in website resources, and more.
In addition to these two major factors, here are a few other things that also impact on-site optimization:
- Quality of content
- A good content guideline
- Making sure that the site is crawlable by Google’s bots
- Using the right graphic theme
- Good UI design
- Efficient site organization
There are more, but you get the point. The complexities of on-site optimization are a reason why having an experienced SEO specialist in your team is a must. Remember, you’re simply working against Google — you’re also working against your competition.
Once your on-site SEO is on point, you need to turn outward and make your website interesting to Google. As it turns out, Google values subject authority. If you’re a gardening expert, and you offer quality content that is based around gardening, other people will recognize your expertise and cite you and your site.
In turn, this will create a network of inbound links to your site. Google will then recognize this link structure and conclude that you must be an authority in your field since there are so many sites pointing your way through gardening-related content.
That’s how it should work on paper. In reality, you need to reach out and network with other high authority sites. Link building is a process that brings its own set of hurdles. Even so, it’s essential for the overall success of your SEO campaign. This is especially true if you’re trying to rank for highly contested keywords in a niche that is overly saturated as it is.
SEO is a long game. If you’re starting a website from scratch, it can be months before you notice any fruits of your labor. However, that’s more of a guideline than a rule. Already established websites can potentially experience SEO-related growth within weeks of implementation of new strategies. There is no way to tell with 100% certainty.