WHAT IS MEANT BY SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION (SEO)?
As a business owner, you would have probably heard the phrase “SEO,” be it from your competition, friends, or even customers, and you might even be considering it as a means of raising the proceeds of your sales. The question is, what exactly do you understand by SEO?
Search Engine Optimization, which is popularly referred to as SEO, refers to the process by which you can enhance your site to increase the frequency at which your pages pop up in search results.
The more your pages pop up in search results, the higher the probability of gaining new customers and retaining the services of old ones.
As a business owner, you might have tried SEO services in the past and then conclude that it does not work, or it might have been effective for you in the past, but it no longer. Well, this article is tailored to correct that impression.
As you progress in reading through the article, you will find explanations that answer questions like SEO? In addition, some points will also be made to explain why SEO is working better now more than ever.
The Importance of Seo for Marketing
SEO is often done for the sole purpose of increasing the flow of traffic to your website. However, SEO has grown to be an essential aspect of digital marketing.
Several millions of searches are conducted daily to find out information about different products and services. These types of searches are usually the primary source of traffic for business establishments.
Having a more excellent ranking and visibility in search results than other establishments that offer the same services as you might just be the key to a positive bottom line.
Over the decade, there has been an evolution of the search results to provide more information and direct answers that are meant to capture and hold users’ attention and prevent them from moving on to other sites.
In the early days of the millennium, most people used the popular search engines were Lycos and Excite. At this period, only a minute part of the world population had any kind of access to the internet.
There were only one or two pages with only the basic information on the available websites.
Back then, the only SEO practices were to jampack as many keywords as possible on a page so that the website pops up when those keywords are searched while avoiding making the page’s contents look like spam to the visitors.
After the launch of AdWords by Google in 2002, there was a buzz about the predicted death of SEO since people could quickly pay for prominence.
In a smart move to end all of the smaller search engines, Yahoo purchased AltaVista, Inktomi, and Fast in 2003. Unfortunately, around this time also, Google started to frown on spamming and websites.
Google also realized that Adwords wouldn’t make SEO irrelevant, and the natural listings worked against their intended purpose by encouraging users to go back to their search engine platform.
Google began to recognize and acknowledge professional SEO experts, and they began to promote good SEO rather than spam SEO.
The first-ever website ban from the internet occurred in 2004 when Google took legal action against websites that were spamming them. Google also legal steps against the SEO Company that was responsible.
In 2006, ranking a website required links that lead back to your website; therefore, purchasing links or link exchange was of the utmost importance. Several websites provided web pages where they list companies and the links leading to their website.
In the search engine world between 2004 and 2008, Google was the most significant powerhouse. They started acting against poor linking practices and companies that were under per. They also began to shed more light on spam and buying links.
During this period, most unsavory SEO practices were stamped out. Google then chose to concentrate on ranking websites according to the quality of their contents, and it’s the amount of relevance to the search being currently carried out.
Search engines started to take notice of Social Media sites between 2010 and 2015, and not too long from the period when they were noticed, and social media sites soon became a trend.
Later on, videos and pictures were incorporated into the search results during the Google Caffeine update.
These kinds of claims were that since they had visited their website severally, Google fed their website back to them for all relevant searches.
Even nowadays, this can still be an issue till you show the new Google Incognito search.
Link exchanges were eliminated by Google’ Panda’ and ‘Penguin’ with the introduction of penalties for websites that had illegal links directed to them.
Google also introduced no-follow links, which enable websites to provide functional connections to other websites along with information without the risk of penalty for either of the parties. This was the dawn of “safe linking.”
The key to ranking in search engines was then the quality and relevance of the content.
As reported in 2014 by the Office For National Statistics, the internet was accessed by 38 million adults in Great Britain, which is around 21 million more than in 2006 when official records taking started.
A vast population of adults purchased goods and services online, and all the items purchased online in 2014 clothes were the largest percentage.
As of 2014, 8 out of 10 households had access to the Internet in Great Britain. At this point, the use of mobile phones to visit websites had become a common thing. The United Kingdom was now conversant with the use of the internet.
The most significant difference in the search engine realm in 2015 was the act of penalizing websites that were deemed to be not mobile-friendly.
That is websites that do not have information for the smaller screens, which makes it relatively easier for the end-user to go through and understand.
In consideration of the users’ comfort, Google started to rank websites that were mobile-friendly or responsive higher.
Since the United Kingdom population was constantly using their mobile phones to do local searches, local companies were afforded an added advantage over the rather “large” corporations or companies on the internet.
The “semantic search” was introduced. In semantic search, Here, Google showcases websites in the result based on the content of a page rather than the basis of keywords.
This again modified the perspective of SEO agencies about working on websites. To ensure good SEO practices, the content of your website should follow the steps briefly explained in this trend:
- PAGE TITLE – there should be a page title that showcases what the page’s content is about.
- HEADLINE -the headline of the page should be structured as a question.
- The first paragraph of the content should briefly explain the page’s content and briefly offer a solution.
- Images or videos that can be associated with the page’s content should then be added to the body of content.
- You should then offer a more elaborate and well-detailed description and explanation of the offered solution.
Following the trend suggested above has several benefits. Such benefits include;
- Some people might just briefly glance through your first paragraph and check out the image you included, and then make their decision on whether or not to patronize you for your services.
Others will require further information, which you would have provided further down the page. So, notwithstanding the choice the customer has made, it’s a win-win situation for you.
- Another benefit is that it will be n to pop up for a combination of the words on the pages of your website.
In the previous years, the norm was the creation of website content for search engines. Nowadays, you are required to create content to the taste of the customers, which is relatively quite easy.
To achieve this “relatively easy” task, you should enquire about a few things like;
- The issues that your previous customers previously encountered in the past.
- The type of questions these customers were asking.
- Solutions to counter these issues?
What Is The Need For Link Building?
The primary purpose of link building was to get links from all possible places. But nowadays, having too many links might be detrimental to your website.
Relevant links are far healthier than having numerous links that lead back to your website.
Social Media on SEO Practices
Business establishments should be on all social outlets that are available to them. When utilized effectively, social media has the potential to drive the attention of even more paying customers to your business than your website could ever do.
With the aid of social media, you can build a brand while constantly keeping in touch with your customers and getting customer feedback regularly.
Unlike the reviews on your website, which can only be seen by those visiting the website, reviews on social media are readily available for all the friends and followers of the customer to see.
Such friends and family become aware of your services and their evaluation, and they might choose to patronize you one day.
Video Marketing in SEO
The concept of video marketing is a relatively new thing because things like YouTube didn’t exist for a long time, and also, when YouTube was established, it was not with the intent of marketing.
YouTube has now grown to be the second-largest search engine globally, and of course, Google owns it.
There are now over a billion YouTube users throughout the world with access to a seemingly “inexhaustible” supply of videos covering a wide range of tastes.
With the evolution of video marketing, a larger percentage of searches now result in watching a video.
So, there is a need for business establishments to make provisions for video marketing to reach a broader circle of potential customers and keep up with the competition.