What is SEO?

SEO is not just a buzzword but one of the most necessary components to becoming a successful modern-day marketer. In reality, SEO is a discipline on its own; understanding the fundamentals will help develop a fully comprehensive marketing strategy. This article is the first part of a very rudimentary overview of the essential functions of SEO; the purpose is to give you an idea of what goes into each so you can know where to start and where to focus if you want to learn more.

All About Rank

The number one purpose of SEO and the whole reason companies spend vast amounts of resources on it is that when you Google something related to your business, you come out first in the organic section of a search engine result page (SERP). Google determines rank using an algorithm that uses many factors to determine where your website shows up. The relevant factors are being constantly updated and changed by google. The purpose of these updates is to help provide users better results or because some websites began to abuse the algorithm by over-optimizing. The critical thing to remember is that most of these factors almost always focus on relevance and quality; keeping that focus will most likely save you from getting penalized if they change something that might have once been best practice. That is why your SEO strategy needs to focus on developing a high-quality experience for searchers by providing relevant information and ensuring your actions are coordinated with other departments to deliver an effortless experience. If you keep that focus on quality, then ranking will come naturally.

Google Analytics on desktop.
A picture of what a google analytics account looks like.

The Heart of Digital Marketing

The goal of all digital strategies is to lead to action, and action should happen on your website. The purpose of SEO is ranking number one by meeting these standards, which are all focused on giving the searcher relevant and high-quality results. When you think about SEO and maintaining your website, you should consider them synonymous since your website’s quality plays a significant role in your rank. If a website has a poor design, people will be turned off aesthetically and leave the site. Worse yet, if the searcher has a strong intent, but your site has a poor design, then they won’t act on their intentions. That is why SEO is the heart of your digital marketing strategy because making sure websites provides an effortless user experience is essential, and conforming to SEO best practices will ensure that the users have that great experience.

The Three Areas of SEO

There are three main areas of SEO, all of which are vitally important to helping rank number one. The first is On-Page marketing, and it revolves around optimizing on-page elements like keyword choice and content. Off-site is all about actions taken outside of the website that helps SEO ranking; this mainly focuses on acquiring inbound links and brand building. The last aspect is technical SEO, which primarily focuses on assisting Google’s robots, or crawlers, to read your websites. They all rely on each other, as the on-page content needs first to be good enough to be linked, which helps with the off-site aspect, and second be conformed for the technical aspects to help the crawler read and understand that content.

Next Steps

Although this is just scratching the surface, you can help accentuate this foundation by learning what matters to google, firstly by researching their ranking factors. Going over Google’s timeline will also help give you a grasp of their overall goals. Knowing the changes they have made over the years can ensure that your content aligns with their intents, helping you stay ahead of any future changes they will undoubtedly make.

Part two: Keyword Strategy