Digital Marketing Enthusiast with a strong passion for building brand identity.
The Importance of SEO: If You're Not First, You're Last
93% of all online experiences begin on a search engine, and 75% of those searching never scroll past the first page. Meaning, if your website isn't ranking within the top 10 of a SERP, the odds of your traffic increasing are drastically decreasing.
If you aren't showing up on the first page, you might as well be showing up on the last.
The Basics: What is SEO?
To put it simply, search engine optimization, also known as SEO, is the process of increasing your website’s visibility in the organic search results of major search engines.
Organic? As in the food grown and processed according to federal guidelines?
Organic Search refers to the results of a search engine that cannot be influenced by paid advertising. Organic results are ranked according to their relevance to the search term, meaning you can't pay your way to the top. (That's what PPC is for.)
Instead, SEO focuses on a variety of unpaid techniques to improve and increase your online visibility.
How to Optimize
Now that you know what SEO stands for, let's explore some ways you can utilize it to improve your site and increase its visibility for relevant searches.
But what do you need to improve?
Is it the speed? Is it the layout? Is it the content? Or maybe it’s the links...
Yes, definitely the links.
Yes, yes, yes, and yes — it’s all of that and more.
SEO isn't only about search engines, and it is most definitely not a "one and done" investment. It is an ongoing process that needs to be up to date and strong enough to reach new customers.
Founder of MOZ, Rand Fishkin, created a pyramid ("Mozlow's hierarchy of SEO needs) that beginners can use as a guide or starting point.
If you are new to SEO, follow these seven steps to successful optimization.
- Crawl accessibility so engines can read your website
- Compelling content that answers the searcher’s query
- Keyword optimized to attract searchers & engines
- Excellent user experience, including a fast load speed and compelling UX
- Share-worthy content that earns links, citations, and amplification
- Title, URL, & description to draw high CTR in the rankings
- Snippet/schema markup to stand out in SERPsimproving your site to increase its visibility for relevant searches
If done right, search engines (which, in 90% of all cases, is Google) like to show it as a top result for specific keyword searches.
The advantage of showing up as a top result?
Top Result = More Clicks = More Traffic = More Conversions
- Increased Traffic: The majority of search engine users are more likely to click on one of the top 5 suggestions in the search engine results pages (SERPS).
- Boost Credibility: Users trust search engines, and having a presence in the top positions for the keywords the user is searching increases the website’s trust.
- Bypass Competition: SEO can put you ahead of the competition. If two websites sell the same thing, the search engine optimized website is more likely to have more customers and make more sales.
- Cost-Effective: SEO lowers advertising costs. When you already have a top ranking, there is no need for you to pay per click or advertise your page. You will continue to stay above the rest of the search results as long as Internet users click your search links.
Don't Feel Discouraged
SEO is a fast-paced and dynamic field, and it can be very frustrating trying to stand out in the crowd. Don't get discouraged when starting just because you don't see results right away. There's a lot to pay attention to and understand before you reap the full benefits of SEO.
That’s why you must stay well-informed and continuously learn.
Stay on top of:
- Emerging trends
- Algorithmic changes
- Technological advancements
- Your audience
- Your competitors
Set, Revisit, and Repeat
Ultimately, SEO isn’t only about being found on search engines and driving traffic to your website. It’s about generating leads, revenue, and, most importantly, creating a great experience.
The world of SEO is continuously changing with new discoveries and updates, making it a never-ending process that takes time and commitment.
Keep up with it, monitor your progress, and adopt the SEO mantra of “set it, revisit it and repeat."
Thankfully, many talented digital marketers, like myself, have the skill and expertise to assist your business needs and guide you to the top; Literally.