An Easy Guide to SEO
Updated: Feb 21
What Is SEO?
SEO means Search Engine Optimisation. Focusing on SEO means improving your website content and raising your search engine rankings.
Anyone with a website should be looking into SEO, as organic rankings lead to more traffic.
SEO has been relevant since the emergence of search engines in the 90s, but recently more and more business owners are starting to use this cost-free strategy. Conveniently, this also means decreased spending on PPC.
This is important for your business…
No matter what service or product your business offers... internet users are constantly searching, and you want the answer to be on your website in order to rank higher than your competitors – which will mean free traffic for your business.
Essentially, SEO is any action you take on your site to make search engines know that your website is high quality and provides the solution the user is seeking.
Basically, SEO is anything you do to help your site rank higher on search engines.
On-Page vs Off-Page SEO
You may have heard of these terms, but do you know what they mean?
On-page SEO (otherwise known as technical SEO) means everything you can change and control, such as using keywords, improving content quality, internal linking, and page performance.
Investing time into this is a great idea, as they go hand-in-hand with high rankings.
Off-page SEO is anything external that can help a website’s ranking, such as using backlinks from reputable websites. Backlinks prove the credibility and authority of your website and help show search engines how helpful your website is.
Think of it as a shout out, the greater the reputation of the backlink-er (full disclosure, we've made up that word, the technical term is referring domain), the more credibility the shout out has, and therefore the higher the impact on your website’s search engine ranking score.
For example, here’s a backlink to our Instagram - shameless plug ;).
What Makes Good SEO?
SEO can be difficult, but there are three main areas to consider: technical, website content, and backlinks.
The technical aspect of your website is the way your website has been built. It’s important to consider SEO from a technical angle, otherwise, it is difficult for other techniques to be effective
Content is obviously important, as, without it, you will not rank well on search engines. In general, helpful and high-quality content will mean a higher ranking and increased organic traffic
Quality backlinks also help raise credibility for search engine ranking
White Hat vs Black Hat SEO
These are some other terms you need to get familiar with to become an SEO pro.
The white hat approach refers to the ‘goodies’ who follow SEO guidelines, whereas the black hat approach is used to describe those who don’t, the ‘baddies’ (Alexa, play suspenseful music).
White Hat SEO is an approach with follows standards practice techniques under general guidelines. This is the recommended approach, as it should lead to a long-term high ranking. This ranking is a result of the website containing quality content and has the user in mind.
On the other hand, black hat SEO is the rebel younger sibling. It is often seen as unethical and builds websites using spammy practices. Often, the website owner may only consider search engine ranking and not think about the user at all.
Eventually, bad practice is flagged up and can even result in penalties or getting banned - basically, don't do it.
How Can I Get Started with SEO?
The good news is that you don’t need anything to get started with SEO! It can be time-consuming, and you'll need to know what you're doing, but ultimately, you can check through pages yourself. There are loads of great tools to help you analyse your site.
We would recommend: Google Search Console, Google Analytics for traffic analysis, Google Keyword Planner to find recommended keywords, and a backlink analysis tool to see which websites are mentioning yours – Ahrefs.com provides an easy to use one.
Still sounds complicated? What a shame, if only you knew of an agency that has SEO experts on hand ready to support your business... #justsaying 👀
SEO, PPC, ABC... We agree, all these acronyms can look like someones dipped a fork in alphabetti spaghetti and thrown it down. And when you find out what they mean, it can feel like a lot to get your head around.
At Audience, we've already got our heads around them, in fact, we don't just know about them, we're experts (and we're modest!). So, if you want to save yourself the headache, get in touch with us today and we'll advise you how we can implement paid and/or organic search strategies, to connect you with your audience and boost your business.