What Is Search Engine Optimisation? (SEO)
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine's unpaid results - often referred to as "natural or "organic results. In general, the higher a website is positioned on the search results page and the more frequently a site appears in the search results list, the more visitors it will receive from the search engine's users. SEO may target different kinds of search for example: image search, local search, video search, academic search and news search.
How Does a Website Rank?
Search engines want to serve up the best matching results and best quality pages according to a users search query. In order for them to do this they look at over 200 different factors that determine this. Some factors include things that are already part of the website eg: on page factors. Some also include links from reputable outside sources and some will consider engagement in social media.
Furthermore, no one (outside of the search provider themselves eg: Google) knows precisely what factors they include or how they are weighted to determine the search results for a given keyword or query, but what we do know is that there are several key elements that are the foundation to being successful.
Onsite factors: your content and your website infrastructure
- Targeting the best keywords/keyword groups for your website
- Matching existing website content to target specific keywords/keyword groups
- Creating new website content to target specific keywords/keyword groups
- Having the best website infrastructure and layout
Offsite factors: how your website is referred to from other online sources
- Developing high quality, on-theme incoming links
- Having a relevant and active social media presence
- Using citations about you/your business (using non-linking references)
- Nearly half of your SEO will be influenced by forces outside your control
There are other contributing factors including many strategies, techniques and tactics. As previously mentioned, search engines look at over 200 signals when evaluating web pages and every year they add over 400 refinements, which is why Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is both time consuming and an ongoing process.
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