SEO Fundamentals: What Is It and How It Works
If you’re a business owner, you may have heard of search engine optimization (SEO).
According to GlobalWebIndex, 81% of people use search engines to find a product or service. So website owners need to optimize their website for search engines to get website traffic.
Despite that, The Manifest shares that only 30% of business owners have an SEO strategy in place. Most entrepreneurs that have tried it found it too time-consuming and have seen little SEO success.
SEO is not as complicated as it seems.
Once you become familiar with the SEO fundamentals, you’ll realize that SEO is simply about implementing practices that give search engines and visitors the best chance of finding your website
Search engine optimization is the process of increasing your website’s visibility organically in the search engine result pages (SERPs).
SEO is different from paid advertising as it returns organic search results (or unpaid traffic), which make up a more significant percentage of search engine traffic.
Importance of SEO
Why should you implement SEO strategies and start learning SEO fundamentals?
SEO brings many benefits for website owners.
SEO Generates More Traffic.
Implementing an SEO strategy is essential because 75% of searchers click on the results from only the first page of the SERPs. If your website appears on the first page for a query, you receive the majority of clicks and traffic.
Even on the first page. the closer to the top your result is, the more traffic it gains. SISTRIX reports that the top results have a click-through rate (CTR) of 28.5%.
If your website isn’t ranking near the top, you’re losing out on traffic, leads, sales and revenue.
It may take longer to see results on SEO, but it’s well worth it.
Unlike other traffic acquisition methods like social media or email marketing, websites that rank on the SERPs receive consistent, passive traffic.
According to HubSpot, Google receives 5.6 billion searches per day. So you are assured of consistent monthly traffic.
SEO Improves User Experience.
SEO was simple during the early days: stuff many keywords into your website, and poof – your content appears in the SERPs. Multiple Google updates later, ranking in SERPs takes more than keywords.
Now, user experience elements have been integrated with good SEO practices.
In 2021, Google introduced the Page Experience algorithm update, aiming to provide an optimal user experience. While user experience has always been integrated with good SEO practices, the new update incentivizes websites to actively improve their user experience.
SEO Yields a High Return on Investment (ROI).
SEO drives higher ROI than other marketing strategies.
According to Terakeet, websites that rank high on SERPs:
- Increase a blog’s business value by 429%
- Decrease customer acquisition costs by 87.41%
- Bring in $12.20 of revenue per $1 spent on marketing.
How Search Engines Work
As part of learning SEO fundamentals, it’s crucial to look at how search engines work to determine which aspects of your websites you need to optimize.
Search engines have three primary functions:
- Crawling: Search engines send out robots (spiders or crawlers) to look for new content. The content can be webpages, PDFs, images, videos or anything that can be linked to.
- Indexing: After spotting content, the search engine crawlers follow the links to find new URLs. When they find unique content, they add it to their index or the database of discovered URLs.
- Ranking: Once the URLs are in the database, the crawlers retrieve that information to match a user’s search query. The search engine then organizes the results from most relevant to least relevant.
to be continued…