If you’re a business owner who is present online, getting more traffic to your website is crucial. But just being online isn’t enough anymore. With added competition and everyone and their dog having a website, you need to stand out. As of today, there are multiple ways to do so: paid, Search Engine Marketing (SEM) or organic traffic, Search Engine Optimization, (SEO).
Today we are going to focus on one: Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
What is SEO?
Search Engine Optimisation or SEO is the process of optimizing your website to be shown in higher positions in search engines like Google or Bing. For example say you own a dog grooming business and you want to drive more local clients to your shop. To do so you optimize aspects of your website so when clients search “local dog groomers” you appear in the top results.
Why is SEO important?
As a business owner, if you want to increase your reach and catch a bigger part of these people searching, you must have a good SEO.
Good SEO means your website is ranking higher in search engine results for a particular search query. For example if i search “local dog groomers” and your businesses came up on the first page that means you have Good SEO, but if I searched “local dog groomers” and your website is not ranking on the first results page then you have Bad SEO.
So why is it important? “97% of search engine users use a search engine to find local businesses”. 67.7% of clicks are on the first 5 organic search results, and most people don’t bother going to the second page of Google. If you want to increase your clientele, keep up with the competition and grow your business, optimizing your website is a must!
Ways to Optimize your SEO
So now that you know what SEO is, you’re probably wondering how you can optimize it? There are three things to focus on when trying to do so:
- On page SEO: everything that you can directly interact with, like the content of your website, its page structure, and performances. Images with Alt text (gives an indication of the content to search engines, and gives accessibility to people with handicap).
- Off page SEO: everything that is outside of your website, basically everything pointing towards your website. (any types of Links). For example; external links pointing towards the website (social networks, videos, PDF, blogs, forums, other websites).
- Technical SEO: All elements that help page crawlers (search engines robots) to understand the structure of your website. For example; XML/HTML Sitemaps, and Robots.txt files.
What Not and To do!
Before you go off and start optimizing your website, here are a few things you should know.
What not to do: Black hat SEO.
Black hat SEO is using all the spamming ways to manipulate the ranking of your website. For example spamming of keywords in one page, links from expired domains, and buying links online. This is the way to avoid as you get flagged by Google algorithms and, therefore, won’t rank high in the search results.
What to do: White hat SEO:
White hat SEO uses all techniques that are compliant with Google algorithm’s guideline (Google webmaster guidelines). For example….. This way you will get noticed by Googles algorithm and will rank higher in search results.
SEO is a constant work of analyzing, optimizing and repeating the process again and again. It is long and strenuous and can take some time to show results. But in the long run if you can organically optimize your page you will have opportunities for new clientele, keep up with the competition and grow your business.