Want to start working in the world of search engine optimization? Did you outsource some work to an SEO provider and would like to familiarize yourself with what exactly they’re working on? Want to start working in the world of search engine optimization? Did you outsource some work to an SEO provider and would like to familiarize yourself with what exactly they’re working on?
Learning SEO seems overwhelming at first, so let’s start with the basics, shall we?
In layman’s terms, search engine optimization–or SEO for short–is pretty much the process of adapting strategies to suit a search engine’s algorithms so that webpages can rank high.
The tricky part with this is that these search engine algorithms evolve along with the Internet through the course of time. This means that those who provide search engine optimization services need to constantly change the way they play the game.
But what are the fundamentals of SEO?
What should we know first before thinking of a strategy?
We can divide the basics into three parts: Keywords, On Page, and Off Page.
Keywords are what people type into the search bar when they, well, search for something in Google or other search engines. They’re the first thing that comes to mind for many of us when we hear the word SEO. We can’t help it—a large part of SEO does revolve around keywords.
We know the main goal of SEO is to make a webpage appear as close to the first page of the search results as possible when their keywords are typed in. Researching these keywords is one of the tough parts. Too broad of a keyword and you’ll have too much competition. Many SEO experts search for and use “long-tail” keywords (aka short phrases) instead, as they will have less pages to compete with. But how are keywords used?
On-Page SEO is where the keywords go. The basics of the basics, it consists of the following:
• Web ContentThis means all the things we have on our websites–blog posts, articles, images (their image names matter as well!), videos and descriptions, among others.
• URLs The structure of your URL affects how SEO-friendly it is. URLs that are short, contain a keyword, and also describes the content that the page has do not only tend to rank higher, but are also human-friendly as well.
• Metadata This is what you call the bits of text that appear when webpages appear on the results pages. They are the title of your page and its description. Optimizing your metas are very important–the title tag alone can catapult you to the first page.
Now, if On Page SEO focuses on your own website, Off Page SEO is more concerned with other sites. We’re talking about links. When search engines see that websites link back to your own site, it has a positive effect on your site’s ranking.
Remember, however, that it’s not about the number of links to your site. It’s about the quality and content of the sites that link back to you. The better the quality of these sites, the more relevant you become in the figurative eyes of the search engine.
There are many study materials and tutorials out there that provide a more in-depth look into SEO. Unfortunately for many of us, we just don’t have the time to learn how to optimize our websites. But while we hand all the work to people who offer SEO company services, that doesn’t mean we can’t learn a thing or two about what they do.
But if you want to delve deeper into the world of SEO, then study away!