The bare basics of Search Engine Optimization

Every day billions of people around the world face a problem and want a solution.

10-15 years ago, when people encountered a problem, they would try finding a solution themselves.

They would spend time thinking about it, and try different solutions. If that did not work, they would ask a friend or anyone who could help. That was how people approached problem-solving.

Today, things have changed. We have a problem, want an answer: who needs to think.

We have a problem-solving, all-knowing god at our service available 24/7.

“THE SEARCH ENGINES”.

Search engines have answers to almost any question you would like to ask it.

Think about it.

How often when you come across a problem you use the magical google search bar to find the answer.

Most of the time I guess.

And it’s not only you.

Billions of people are using search engines to find solutions and answers to whatever they want to solve.

Out of all these billions of people, a certain percentage is your customer.

Your product is the perfect solution to their problems and you have answers to their questions.

Now the big question is are you showing up in front of your customers to answer that question, to solve that problem?

If not, then who is?

Obviously your competitor.

Because you are not out there….

You are losing out on opportunities that could skyrocket your sales, increase your brand awareness, get a bigger market share, and whatnot.

While on the other hand your competitor is receiving the majority of high quality traffic for free from search engines.

So, what can you do to change that?

How can you turn the table around?

I will tell you how and it’s not social media marketing.

Search Engine Optimization. It is the magic spell you need to please the search engine gods.

In this article, we will be looking at the bare basics of search engine optimization.

By the end, you will know what exactly search engine optimization is so that you can suck in organic traffic from search engines like crazy.

The bare basics of a search engine optimization: Understanding search

Today, 5 billion people use the internet worldwide and expected to reach 5.3 billion by 2023.

Total internet users: the bare basics of search engine optimization.
Total Internet user according to statista.

Search engines are the gateway for people to use the internet.

Search engines are software created to help carry out web searches.

Google is the most popular and leading search engine out there in the market. Other search engines include duck duck go, bing, etc. Search engines can be of different types. You can have a search engine for a specific niche. Youtube is a video search engine.

How does a user search online? What does the process look like?

These questions are critical to understanding search engines and SEO.

Think about how you use search engines in your life.

You encounter a problem x and you don’t know how to solve it. You go to google and in the search bar you type “how to solve x”.

The search engine shows a list of results.  And you go through it and pick one that seems to be the most relevant.

On the frontend, we don’t get a hint of whats happening. It’s all so smooth.

But, a lot is happening in the background.

Search engines deploy search engine bots to find out what is being published on the web. The search bots crawl billions of web pages and it gets added to a database called index.

Think of the index as a library.

Whenever you search for something using the search engines, it goes through the index, looks for content that it thinks is relevant, and shows it to you.

The major function of search engines is to help the user find relevant information for their search.

That’s how search engines work.

There is a framework that lets search engines know what content best matches the search query.

That is SEO.

Search engine optimization is the process of optimizing your website/ webpages to increase the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search results.

Search Engine optimization fundamentals

What’s shown in the top 3 results of the first page receives the majority of free and quality traffic from search engines.

So, what is it that will make the search engine go, “This is it”. And award a piece of content the first rank.

You and search engines share a common goal: helping the user find the most relevant content that solves their queries.

To earn that position on the first page: You need to optimize your website for your audience and search engine bots.

Search engines have rules that decide what content deserves the higher rankings. It’s called ranking factors.

Google has more than 200+ ranking factors.

The content you publish goes through certain steps before it gets indexed and ranked.

The search engine bots/crawlers discover your website by crawling it. It then indexes the content based on relevancy.

Relevance is determined based on the keywords you have used, the freshness, etc. Relevancy is how well your content addresses the search query.

The third one is authority. Are there any links from external sources, internal links, web mentions, etc?

There are many more such factors.

You and search engines share a common goal: helping the user find the most relevant content that solves their queries.

To achieve that, You need to optimize your website for your audience and search engine bots.

Search engine optimization is creating content that is relevant and useful to the user. It is also about helping the search engine bots understand what exactly the content is about.

There is no silver bullet or quick fix. Seo is ongoing and cumulative.

Some people try to trick their way to achieving higher rankings. And such methods go against the search engine. SEO Practices that don’t follow search engine guideline is called black hat SEO.

SEO practices that align with the guidelines provided by search engines are white hat SEO. If you want long-term benefits it’s white hat SEO you need to follow.

Black hat practices are not sustainable. It may give results in the short term, but your reputation gets destroyed.

Types of search engine optimization

Making an appearance on the first page of Google is what every business should strive for.

There are 4 major types of SEO well rounded for organic results

  • On-page SEO
  • Off-page SEO
  • Technical SEO
  • Local SEO

On-page SEO is what you do on your webpage, and your content to improve your ranking. It includes using proper keywords,  writing great content, and improving user experience.

Off-page  Seo is what you do outside of your website to improve your rankings. It includes building backlinks, citations, and web mentions. Off-Page SEO is to build authority.

Technical SEO is more about technical aspects as the name suggests. It includes optimizing the code, Indexing, checking for duplicate content, website speed, etc.

Local SEO is optimizing your lsitings on google my business, maps, submitting your business to local diretories. It works best for brick and mortar business.

These 4 combined make for a perfect SEO strategy.

I would love to keep on going but that goes beyond the scope of this article.

Are you interested to know more about it?

Leave a comment saying ” On-page SEO” and I will come up with the next post.

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Shamir Yednap

I'm a Digital Marketer and I help businesses scale and grow online through Digital Marketing.

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