What is SEO? The Ultimate Guide

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) has been an essential component of digital marketing for some time now. In fact, SEO is one of the few channels that has continuously grown in importance and visibility over the past few years. This guide covers everything from understanding what SEO is to learn how to optimise your website for search engines. So even if you think you already have a good handle on things, read on – you might just learn something new!

What is SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. SEO is improving how people find your website on search engine result pages. When people use a search engine to find something, like “boutique hotels in London”, they may see your website in one of the top spots. If not, they’ll probably see a paid advertisement from a company like Expedia or Hotels.com. SEO is what helps you rank higher on those pages. SEO is an investment in the future of your business, and it can have a significant impact on your sales, traffic, and customer satisfaction.

How does SEO work?

There are two aspects of SEO that you need to understand: On-Page SEO and Off-Page SEO. On-Page SEO refers to all the things you do on your website to optimise search engine results. The most important thing to keep in mind while doing your On-Page SEO is to create the best user experience possible. Visitors need to easily find what they’re looking for, and then easily navigate away from your site.

Off-Page SEO refers to all the work you do outside of your website to make it more “search engine friendly”. The goal is to get other sites (like Wikipedia, news sites, and more) to link to your website. This is a more long-term strategy, but it can greatly impact your search engine results.

SEO best practices

Keyword Research

Keyword research is the first step to determining how to optimise your content for search engines.

Start by looking at the search engine’s Autocomplete feature to see what terms people are using to find your product or service. You can also use a keyword tool like SEMrush’s Keyword Explorer, Google’s Keyword Planner, or Ahref’s Keyword Explorer.

SEO Meta Title

Ensure your SEO title is descriptive but doesn’t include a long string of keywords.

SEO Meta Description

This is where you have one last chance to convince your reader to click on your link. Ensure that your meta description is descriptive and includes your main keywords.

URL Structure

Make sure that your URL structure is simple and logical. URLs that are too long or confusing can hurt your SEO because Google “punishes” them.

Content

Make sure that your content is high-quality and engaging. Google’s algorithm is designed to reward sites that create content that is useful to people.

Site Speed

Make sure that your website loads quickly. Google has said that site speed is a ranking factor, so don’t let your visitors wait!

Image Optimisation

Make sure all your images are as good quality but as small in file size as possible. Use appropriately formatted alt tags whenever possible. Google likes images with ALT tags, so it knows what your images are about.

Site Architecture

Make sure that your site navigation is clear and simple. Visitors should be able to find what they’re looking for without effort. URL Fragment – Google likes sites with a “clean” URL structure.

SEO auditing: Finding and fixing SEO problems

A good SEO audit will look at all aspects of your website to see where you could be doing better. Any SEO audit should include:

On-Page SEO

Ensure that your title tags and meta descriptions are optimised and your URL structure is clean.

Off-Page SEO

Make sure that your backlinks are clean and legitimate.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics can tell you a lot about your website’s traffic, including whether or not search engines are finding your site.

Google Search Console

Google Search Console is a free tool that gives you a lot of information about how Google sees your website.

Competitor Analysis

To exceed your competitors, you need to know what they’re doing.

Keyword Research

When you know what your potential customers are searching for, you can make sure they can find your website.

SEO Copywriting and Content Marketing

While some people might think that SEO ends with optimising your content for the search engines, the essential part of SEO is creating high-quality content that your readers will love.

After all, if your content isn’t relevant, engaging, or valuable to your readers, why should they click on your website? All of the work you put into optimising your website will be wasted if you don’t have quality content to rank with.

This goes beyond keyword research and means creating the best content possible.

Organic SEO Tools

Ahrefs: Ahrefs is one of the most powerful SEO tools on the market. It gives you a ton of information about your website and your competitors.

SEMrush: SEMrush is another great tool for understanding your competition and your own website. This tool will help you see who’s linking to your site and what they say about you.

Google Keyword Planner – The Google Keyword Planner lets you see what people are searching for. You can also use it to find new keywords that you can target.

Google Search ConsoleGoogle Search Console is a free tool that shows you how Google sees your website. It’s important to monitor your website’s data here.

Summing up – What is SEO? The Ultimate Guide

SEO has been a critical part of online marketing for years. It’s been evolving over time and will continue to do so. SEO will take on new forms with the rise of voice search and more ways to find information online. With this in mind, it’s important to keep up with trends and make sure your strategies are up to date. At Blue Door Design, we have a range of SEO packages and options to suit all budgets so why not contact us today and find out how we can help you increase your website reach and rankings.

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