53.3% of all website traffic comes from organic search. (BrightEdge)
Search engine optimisation (SEO) refers to the practice of optimising websites and content to be more discoverable to people who search for terms relevant to your business offerings.
Besides paid advertising tools, SEO is essential for everyone working in digital marketing. SEO is called organic because they happen naturally based on each search engine’s algorithm, and no one can pay for better visibility.
Optimising your web pages for SEO will help to make your website more visible to people searching relevant terms to your product or service via search engines like Google. In a long time, it builds trust and often results in customer loyalty.
In today’s world, the market is getting more competitive, and it is not as easy to rank in good positions on search results pages. We have listed these ten steps, which have been conducted from our years of experience helping our clients boost SEO.
Gaasly SEO Fundamentals
In all marketing, we always put business first. The end goal for every marketing activity is to create more revenue and profit.
When doing SEO, we use data and analytics to experiment with new ways to rank higher. Tools like Google Search Console and Google Analytics are essential when planning different actions.
Accountability is one of the critical values of Gaasly, and we apply it also in SEO. Setting up KPIs and following them weekly basis helps us keep track of the progress.
1. Build a website
A robust website is a base for good SEO. You can build a website by simply coding it or using a website builder. Many choose the latter. Choosing a good builder is the first vital step to help Google understand your site. However, not all website builders can do this well. We typically use WordPress, Squarespace or Webflow in our projects.
39,5% of all sites are using WordPress (Search Engine Journal). All of WordPress.com’s website themes are designed with SEO rankings in mind. They take care of 80-90% of basic SEO mechanics.
If you’re familiar with SEO basics and prefer advanced features, Squarespace is the builder for you.
Webflow is new to the game, but it already proves its usefulness for SEO. It lets you update metadata, alt tags and create automated sitemaps directly, without any add ons.
2. Setup Google Analytics and Google Search Console
Your website is ready to go. Now is the time to set up essential tools that help you track and improve your SEO performance. Doing SEO without a proper understanding of data and analytics is a waste of time.
Google Analytics is user-oriented. It provides the data related to those who visit and interact with your website. Through this, you can develop different ways to optimise your keywords and ensure that your top articles are up-to-date and easy to spot.
Google Search Console is search-engine focused. It offers internal and external information from the actual site. It will inform if any problems or malware are found on the site, which queries appear in Google Search, and what you can do to improve appearance on a search to bring more relevant traffic to the website.
3. Setup conversion
The purpose of SEO is to drive users to the website, and in the end, convert them into customers. Even when you gain a lot of new traffic to the website, your SEO efforts become useless if none of them purchases your offerings.
Conversion, therefore, should be placed clearly on the website. It can either be purchased on an e-commerce store or contact through a form on a website.
4. Keyword research
To know if a site is relevant to the search, search engines look for keywords. Keywords are words or phrases that are entered in the search query or as a part of it. A high-value keyword will help the company rank better in the organic search results and drive more traffic to the websites.
To begin with, some keyword research should be done. Think about how the audience will type in the search box to find the products and evaluate them with SEO tools.
Many online tools support generating keywords, such as Ahref, Moz, RankMath, Yoast and SEMRush. They also help you get the idea of the search volumes and competitiveness for different keywords.
As mentioned previously, Google Search Console is one of the most effective ways to do keyword research. It gives information on what your website already ranks for and boosts traffic. Another great tool from Google is Google Trends, which can help check and analyse the popularity of the search queries.
5. How to start doing SEO?
Keyword research itself is an ongoing task and should be updated all the time. Therefore, don’t reach for the stars at the first attempt. Your first guess is probably wrong anyway. In the beginning, you probably don’t know which keywords convert best and which search term you can rank high easiest.
We usually start SEO with 1-5 selected keywords. We begin creating content around these keywords and optimise on-page, off-page and technical SEO. Once we learn more about which keywords bring new customers, we switch to focus on new keywords and push harder for those requiring more work.
6. Content is king
You might have heard of this phrase, “Content is King”. Well-written content attracts the audiences, increases search engine rankings and traffic, and increases referrals from other sites.
However, is this all about having tons of different content on your website? In this case, quality is more important than quantity. Posting frequently is good, but to boost your SEO, you should have a proper content strategy.
Our progress at Gaasly usually starts with researching your customer’s pain points – what are the challenges they are having? Put yourself in their shoes so that you will understand their needs and expectations. Later on, it is easier to refer to your offerings as the problem-solver. With all these generated ideas, you can continue tailoring them to the keywords and creating SEO-friendly content.
7. Technical SEO
When a user types a word or a phrase, the mission of a search engine is to provide the highest quality results to its user.
Page speed is one criterion for search engines to evaluate. Google wants to serve content that loads lightning-fast for searchers. Thinking from a user point of view, people will likely go back to the search engine page and look for a better and faster option if they have to wait too long for the site to load. You can test your site speed with Lighthouse.
In addition, it is of high importance to optimise the experiences for mobile visitors. Most businesses have done a great job to improve page speed on PC but failed when it comes to mobile platforms. Half of the web traffic today comes from mobile; therefore, having an easy-to-navigate website on mobile will help you gain a competitive advantage.
Search Engines Love Security
HTTPS stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, which you usually see in an URL. Users typically expect safe and private online experiences when surfing the sites. HTTPS protects the confidentiality of the data between the website and the user’s computer.
8. On-page SEO
On-page SEO is the practice of optimising elements directly on a website. Having proper on-page SEO will help search engines interpret page content easily and help users quickly capture what this page is about and whether it matches their needs and expectations.
Clear content structure
Google likes clear structure. Organise your content under headlines. The most important is the title of the website, which is followed by subheadlines. In HTML code, these are H1, H2, H3 etc., tags.
Include your keyword in heading tags.
Heading one or site title: Every page should only have one h1-tag to make the title clear to Google.
Subheads: Compared to H1, these subheads from H2 onwards are less powerful but still important
For example: on this page, SEO is chosen as our keywords. You might have noticed that it is visible in the title “10 steps to boost your SEO with Gaasly” and in the subheading: Technical SEO, On-page SEO, Off-page SEO.
Your URL helps Google understand what your page is all about. Therefore, customising your URL can help improve the organic click-through rate.
Meta Keywords Attribute is a series of keywords that you identify as relevant for your website.
Title Tag is the text you’ll see at the top of your browser or in the headline in search results.
Meta descriptions sometimes show up as an excerpt when Google displays your page as a result to the searchers.
Meta Robots Attribute indicates to search engine crawlers what they should do with the page (index/noindex, follow/nofollow).
The page rank is an algorithm from Google to measure website pages’ importance and rank them on search engine results. Page Rank proceeds by flowing from one page to another, following your website structure.
An internal link is any link from one page on your website to another. Both your users and search engines use links to find content on your website. Solid internal link architecture helps search engines establish a hierarchy on your site, identify the most valuable pages and rank your website higher.
External Links are also important. Google will evaluate your website as credible if you link your content to reliable websites and use high ranking websites as sources and references.
Images are essential not only to attract and engage users but also to improve page rankings. It is recommended to optimise image file name and image alt text based on SEO. Image alt text is the copy that will appear if the website fails to load. It allows search engines to crawl and rank your website.
In addition, big size images will slow down your page. Therefore, you need to scale down the images without losing much of their quality.
9. Off-page seo
While search engine algorithms and ranking factors are constantly changing, the trustworthiness and relevance of a website are still highly evaluated. Off-page SEO plays an important role to build authority outside your website.
Think of Google as a library. At the library, people search for books. A famous author with a high reputation will be ranked higher than others. The same logic can be applied to websites. Google figured out that if a site has many other sites linking back to it, it probably provides valuable and relevant content. The more high-quality links lead to the site, the more highly search engines rate.
That is why besides on-page optimisation, a strong focus should be put on off-page. Below are some suggested ways to have the website linked from other sources:
|Partner with companies from
the same industry
Hosting and sponsoring events
Free resources and materials
Free webinars and workshops
|Ask for review
Social Media does not directly affect your SEO rankings, but it is still an essential factor that helps drive traffic to your sites. You can share valuable content with your users and encourage them to reshare on their channels with social media.
10. Get in touch with us to rank and get results
SEO is not a one-day task. It takes time, but the result is rewarding and long-lasting.
SEO and SEM are not separated but complement each other. When working together, SEO and SEM are more substantial than either would be working individually. We recommend you implement both to maximise your performance.
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