First off, what is SEO?
Search engine optimization (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,” “organic,” or “earned” results.
We all get those annoying ‘SEO Consultants’ emailing us, promising the world but delivering nothing, so here is a real explanation of onsite SEO:
Think of Google as a library, and your website is a book in that library. Google want its ‘books’ to be logically organized and properly structured: a title, chapters, sub-chapters, relevant content and photos. An example would be a biology textbook, where you might have a title such as “Marine Biology” as your chapter title (H1 heading in SEO), followed by a title for a subchapter, like “Mammals” (an example of a H2 heading). After you have your headings, you then have your relevant content, and properly captioned (or tagged) images.
What happens when your ‘book’ isn’t to Google’s liking is that Google will give you a lower score.
Why does your score matter?
Well, your website score is important because it helps dictate where you are placed in the organic listings (order of search results), as well as inorganic search results such as Google Adwords.
Let’s have a look at how the position of your website affects how many people will click on it – this data is from January 2016:
As you can see through this data, the higher position you are in Google, the more clicks you get, and thus, the more traffic & sales you drive to your website.
So now that you know what onsite SEO is, and why it’s important, how does it actually get done?
There is a whole lot to onsite SEO, everything from duplicate content, canonical tags, hreflang tags, and more. But really, on the surface, onsite SEO doesn’t have to be so complex. I have broken it down in to 4 steps.
- Think like Google.
Google needs to know what your business is, and what it does. Google won’t just take your word for it, so it will look through keywords in the content of your website. In the next section I will talk about those keywords in more detail, but let’s focus on placement first.
If you get nothing else from this post, ensure that you place the core keywords in your title, description, h1 and p tags. Having said that, make sure you don’t overuse them, as google will penalize you for “keyword stuffing”. The best way to avoid keyword stuffing is to place keywords in naturally, in a way that aids your user’s experience.
Time to explain a few of these elements:
- Title: The blue hyperlink on Google, and the actual title for the website’s window. This can be found in the