Not everyone understands exactly what is meant by Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO as it is more commonly recognised. When first reading up on the subject, we know it can be rather daunting, so we have put together this article to try and simplify the process as much as possible and explain exactly what happens when we ‘do SEO’.

The key tasks undertaken whilst performing SEO:

So, let’s take a look at each of the above in a little more detail. By the end of this article, you should understand exactly what SEO is, how it is performed and why.

Keyword Research

This is the process of assessing exactly what phrases and words we want a website to rank well for when people use a search engine. We do this as we want to target individual searches on search engines.

For example, if you are selling lots of different kinds of dresses on your website, we want to optimise a website so that it shows up in search engines when users search for “Christmas Party Dress” or for “Prom Dresses Cornwall”.

Once we have worked out what keywords we want a website to rank well for, we track the rankings of these words on a monthly basis and they should improve, once we undertake the remainder of the work listed below.

Content Generation

This, in our opinion, is the most important part of SEO. Search engines love new content that is relevant to your website. We firmly believe in adding fresh content to your website as often as you can.

This is important due to the fact that if it is relevant to what you do/sell, search engines will begin to recognise that you are communicating with your audience on relevant subjects and will begin to rank you higher and better. Of course, people reading this content is just as important and we will talk about getting people to your site in another section shortly.

On Page Optimisation

We go through every page on your website and ensure that your page titles are correct. We also ensure that your Meta Descriptions are in place. These are the descriptions that appear under your page title in search results. Although these are becoming less important these days, we still recommend having relevant descriptions in place as they still form part of your content.

This process also involves making sure the content on each page is relevant to the page titles. We also ensure headings on the page are relevant to the page titles and also the main page content is relevant to both of the above.

In conclusion, making sure that page titles, on page headings and content are all linked and all relate to each other well is really important, as search engines are smart enough to work this out.

Link Building

It is extremely important to understand this correctly. There used to be many ways to manipulate search engines with links back to your site that were not relevant to the content or what your site does.

Now, however, it is vital to get good quality links back to your site. These are called Inbound Links. Someone reviewing one of your products or a service you offer, with a link back to your site, is much more valuable than a straight link from an irrelevant directory that is just full of links.

So, ask people to review products and blog about it. Offer them the products free to trial them. These kinds of reviews and links are far more beneficial to your rankings than poor quality links stuffed elsewhere.

This is not to say that relevant directories are bad, they are still good to have. Just make sure that any directories that your website is linked from are relevant to the services you offer or the industry you are involved with.

Social Media

Being prominent and busy on Social Media is becoming hugely relevant to your website’s ranking. Communicating with others, getting links to and from your website, and just being in people’s faces on Social Media fast becoming one of the most important factors that dictate where your website will show in search rankings.

The more a piece of your work or an article is shared on your website, the better search engines rank its credibility, therefore increasing the speed in which search engines find your content and therefore rank it using their algorithms.

Social Media is also important for boosting your relevant keywords and phrases that we discussed in the first section of this article. By naturally including your keywords in your posts or tweets you will increase the chances of search engines finding your content.

Local SEO

This is a quick one really, but ensuring your business is listed on Google Places and linked to a relevant, prominent Google Plus account which contains the same business details is vital. This is because your address and telephone number will show when people search for your business or search for a local business.

An example of this is searching for “Bakery Wadebridge” – If you are listed as a Bakery, your address and phone number on your website and Google Plus page match, there is a good chance your website and business details will show when people search for “Bakery Wadebridge”, therefore increasing the likelihood of your business being found.

Site Architecture

We won’t go into too much detail with regards to this section as it is quite intricate and a detailed procedure, one that would take a long time.

We check all pages for duplicate content, if we find any then we rewrite as necessary as this is a negative ranking factor. We also check the structure of a website’s internal links, ensuring that they flow from one to the other and they are relevant to the content.

The same applies to breadcrumbs. Search engines will check breadcrumbs for links between pages and the relevance between content and breadcrumbs.

The rest of the checks we carry out are done within Google’s Webmaster Tools dashboard. This includes checking Sitemaps, Robots files, Redirections and carry out a crawl check for any errors.

So, there you have it. That is a summary (not as brief as we first thought though, sorry) of SEO in basic terms. There is a lot more detail involved in a lot of the steps we have mentioned, but this article should give you a better idea of how SEO works and how results are achieved.

If you have any questions or are interested in using our SEO services for your website, feel free to give us a call on 01208 895370 or contact us via the Contact Us Page.