SEO Guide for Beginners

What is SEO and how can it help a page rank higher? 


This question has been asked by millions of business owners and professionals until date. If your objective is to know more regarding search engine optimisation (SEO), the sheer volume of available information can seem overwhelming.


SEO can be defined as a process of enhancing the visibility of a web page or site in the organic search results of major search engines. In other words, search engine optimisation deals with improving the online content of a web page, to make it worthy of consideration by search engine crawlers. The rank of a web page is its numerical position on a search engine result page (SERP), for a particular keyword. High-quality content that is optimised with relevant keywords has higher possibilities of achieving healthy ranks. 


Search engine crawlers go through pages, detect keywords within them, and index the pages based on the order of relevance. For instance, if you have published an article titled Top 10 Car Maintenance Tips, it should have ‘car maintenance tips’, or closely-related relevant keywords. If Google perceives your article page as valuable, it is more likely to show up towards the top of SERPs when users search for ‘car maintenance tips’.


Some of the most important parameters for ranking web pages include its content, backlinks, page loading speed, mobile-friendliness, user experience, domain authority and security. Google has listed as many as 200 ranking factors, but being mindful of all is impossible. Fortunately, following the fundamental methods of search engine optimisation can yield significant ranking results. High-quality content writing, keyword optimisation and ethical link building can bring considerable rank improvements. 
 

SEO is a vital digital marketing process


Search engine optimisation continues to be the go-to method for organically improving the search positions of web pages. It is a crucial aspect of digital marketing and does the groundwork for more advanced paid promotion methods. Even if your objective is not ranking high, making your website SEO-friendly can have many other benefits. People find your pages faster, discover your products and services, and can make purchase decisions. If your web page is not optimised for the search engines and has low-quality content, any other marketing methods may not work.

 
A massive number of new pages are published online every day, and the competition of each keyword or phrase keeps growing cumulatively. The online space is crowded with many others who are offering the same services as you. Standing out from the rest becomes very difficult unless the pages are optimised. In a way, SEO is about being useful to potential customers or those seeking information on a particular topic. It makes your web page easier to find, raises overall visibility, and increases the chances of conversions.

 

On-page and off-page SEO


On-page SEO - On-page SEO deals with improving the pages of a website to enhance its organic ranking. It involves the improvement of content and the web design elements of a page. In simpler terms, on-page involves tweaking the elements of a website you are trying to obtain a high rank for.


Page aspects that can be optimised as part of on-page SEO include - 

 

  • headings

  • content

  • meta tags

  • images 

  • structured data

  • website speed

  • URL structure

  • website size


Improving upon these can boost a page’s overall quality and prepares it for better results. Off-page SEO - Off-page SEO is a process consisting of optimisation methods performed externally, and does not include any changes to the page itself. It fundamentally involves the activities to be carried out for obtaining backlinks for other sites. 
 

The techniques of off-page SEO used for obtaining backlinks include - 

 

  • email outreach

  • blogger outreach

  • article submissions

  • social media posting

  • guest blogging 

  • content optimisation

  • influencer optimisation

White hat and black hat SEO - what are they?


White hat SEO - White hat SEO consists of the legitimate tactics that can be utilised to ethically improve the search engine ranking position of a web page. It is considered as a long-term and transparent organic digital marketing approach, beneficial to the ranking and authority of a web page. Ethical white hat methods comply with the guidelines of search engines and focus on improving the user experience.


The fundamental aspects of white hat SEO include - 

 

  • on-page optimisation 

  • ethical link building 

  • keyword research 

  • high-quality content writing 

  • emphasis on page quality 

White hat SEO is the only way to proceed if one wants to obtain measurable results over time. 


Black hat SEO - Black hat SEO consists of a set of unethical and deceptive tactics incorporated to trick the search engine algorithms. This type of optimisation goes against the rules and guidelines set out by engines. Black hat techniques sharply increase the chances of websites getting banned or receiving severe penalties. The bulk of methods used in this type of SEO are not at all focused on user experience. 


The unethical techniques of black hat SEO include - 

 

  • keyword stuffing 

  • link manipulation  

  • keyword research

  • unrelated/irrelevant backlinks 

  • deceptive and shady redirects

  • hidden text 

  • spam commenting

  • link farms 


Search engine providers like Google and Bing have highlighted the techniques to avoid in their list of Webmaster Guidelines. 
 

Why SEO is important

  1. The entire range of ethical SEO techniques do more than just give better ranking to a page. It also greatly enhances the overall website usability and experience of users. 

  2. Reaching the top spots in a SERP is important as most users never look beyond the first five to ten results. If a website is among the highest rankings, it simply does not get noticed.  

  3. Precise implementation of SEO strategies can raise the credibility of a website, and also make it more trustworthy to potential customers. 

  4. SEO and simply puts businesses ahead of their closest competitors. If your site is better optimised from the perspectives of web design and content it can obtain a better rank and higher visibility. 


SEO is a completely free process that gives hope to millions of emerging businesses around the world. It can help your site to compete with the biggest competitors.

RBSEO is a London based established SEO agency serving thousands of businesses in the UK since 2005.

We offer high quality SEO, web design, content writing & link building services at affordable prices to small, medium and large businesses in the UK.

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