Search engine optimization: What is it and how does it work?

The World Wide Web consists of over 1.7 billion websites. How can you ensure that users find your website when they search with search engines such as Google, Yahoo or Bing? The site must be trustworthy and well designed. The content should answer the user’s request. All of this is covered by search engine optimization.

What is search engine optimization?

SEO is the abbreviation for “Search Engine Optimization”. It describes the procedure behind the website ranking. Sophisticated algorithms use various indicators to create a ranking of websites.

In short, SEO is a digital marketing strategy that increases the quantity and quality of traffic to your website. The optimization part of SEO includes numerous steps to help your website rank higher and get free organic traffic. SEO is …

… a marketing discipline – knowledge of SEO is crucial to all your marketing efforts as this is how you will drive traffic to your site and generate leads and conversions. You not only need to write content that Google likes, but also content that resonates with your audience.

… a technical task – the best practices for optimizing your content and your website is important when you are competing for traffic. Those who are familiar with the specifics of search engine optimization will gain a higher ROI.

… an exciting project – you want to generate leads with content? The constantly evolving nature of SEO makes this possible!

Order a non-binding SEO consultation now!

How does search engine optimization work?

When a user searches for a term using a search engine, the result is a ranking of websites. These are relevant to the search query and have a solid domain authority.

On the other hand, if you search for “chocolate cake”, the search engine will show you results that reveal the best SEO practices in the eyes of the algorithms. This is because search engines use crawlers that collect information and every bit of content that can be found on the Internet. An index is created for each website. This is compared with algorithms that Google has developed for best SEO practice.

What factors influence Google search engine optimization?

There are numerous on-site and off-site factors that crawlers take into account when ranking each website. More than 200 factors in the Google algorithm influence the ranking of your website. Nevertheless, practically anyone can improve their rating by simply working with a handful of them.

The 8 most important SEO factors in 2020 are:

1. Domain Authority

Domain authority (DA) shows how much influence your domain has built up over time through backlinks and age.

The more websites talk about your domain, the higher your authority. The older your domain is, the higher its domain authority. The domain authority was developed by the company MOZ.

2. Keywords

SEO starts with the search for the right keywords. The best strategy with a brand new blog is to start by selecting medium to low competition keywords and then slowly build up the post to reach competitive terms.

If you are aiming to rank, you should definitely use LSI keywords (keywords that are synonyms of your target terms). For example, a website referring to “portable chargers” may also contain terms such as “batteries”, “portable batteries for phones” and so on.

The keywords you want to rank for should be specified in the title and subheadlines to achieve perfect on-page optimization.

search engine optimization keywords

3. Relevance and Context

Search engines are more intelligent than ever before. You can easily distinguish between relevant and copied pages.

You can also see whether a page is about oranges or protein bars. When setting up a website, it is advisable to stick to a niche and offer content specifically for this niche.

4. Number of outbound and inbound links

The more relevant links point to your website, the higher your SEO score. The same applies to inbound links, especially if they come from popular and relevant documents. You generate backlinks more quickly if, for example, you have yourself presented on large news websites. Equally important is the number and correct placement of internal links, i.e. links between internal pages.

5. Website Speed

Google is interested in how quickly each page is loaded. To make the page load faster, you should use special plugins and optimize your page accordingly (i.e. reduce image size, optimize html, etc.). A page speed test can provide precise information here.

6. Appealing and clear design

Today, the best websites are functional and responsive to devices of all types and sizes. In fact, search engines even prefer websites that have a mobile-friendly design. A so-called mobile-friendly test can also be carried out here.

7 URL structure

The simpler your URL is, the better users and search engines will understand what it is about. Various studies have confirmed that a shorter URL performs better. Nevertheless, you should include your most important keyword in the URL slug for additional SEO traffic.

8. Length of your content

Whenever you write a blog post, you should go into detail. Search engines reward long-form content. Today, you will only get a ranking if you write at least 1500 to 2000 words per article.

Why should you do SEO at all?

SEO can bring tons of quality leads to your website for free. For example, if you search for “portable charger”, aren’t you more likely to become a customer of the one that shows up on Google? SEO generates high-quality leads that you can later place ads for or sell products to.

Alternatives to search engine optimization: Is SEO better than PPC?

SEO is actually more advantageous than PPC (pay-per-click). Thanks to SEO, you don’t need to spend anything on ads to drive traffic to your website. With PPC, your traffic stops as soon as you stop paying for ads. SEO convinces with a longer lasting effect.

On the other hand, PPC has the advantage that you can increase your sales from day one with a well-converting sales page. You don’t need to wait for your SEO efforts to kick in. The SEM formula is more predictable than SEO, but SEO pays off in the long run.

Do these tips only apply to Google SEO?

Google dominates the world of search engines, currently accounting for around 90% of all global search queries (source https://gs.statcounter.com/search-engine-market-share). Even though the techniques relate in particular to Google SEO, they apply equally to all search engines.

Conclusion

Getting organic traffic is only the first step to building a successful business. Don’t forget that you also get traffic by being featured on major websites, gaining lots of traffic from social media and building a loyal following that continually buys from you and recommends you to others. Get started now!