SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation, is the process of optimising your website and its placement on search engines like Google, Yahoo!, MSN and Bing.
Search Engine Optimisation is an imperative part of your website and online marketing process. It's important to have a great website but you need visitors to make it work. As well as other marketing activities such as Paid Advertising, Content, Affiliate and Social Media Marketing to drive traffic, you want your audience to find your website via search engines because they are a primary source of traffic for most websites. In some industries an average of 70% of traffic is generated by search engines.
Google is obviously the key search engine with it processing over 40,000 search requests per second on average. Tha's a large volume and if you calculate it that's in excess of 3.5 billion searches per day. Now that is impressive.
Google holds the worlds biggest market share at 68%. When you look at the UK market, Google has a whopping 89.2% of users. While glaringly obvious, we at AWD always recommend you look at Google as a unconditional priority when considering your rankings. The market share is so vast in the UK that others should only be a small part of your thought process of how you want us to drive you traffic. If you place well on Google, you’ll no doubt place well on the others too, especially when everyone follows the market leader.
Quite simply, its algorithms develop every day to rank pages which it sees as the most relevant to a search query. Sites that have gained authority and trust in Google’s eyes through On and Off page optimisation stand the best chance of ranking.
To rank a website in Google requires two elements both of which fundamental and intrinsic. These can be described as On-site and Off-Site optimisation.
Onsite optimisation is everything that takes place within the website itself. From the way it's been designed and developed right through to the content and copy. In a nutshell it could be described as “clear signposting”
Firstly, the website has to be technically optimised to be search engine friendly. In reality this means all the pages we want Google to find are present to be crawled by Google spiders in addition to the page we don’t want Google crawling. We take great care to ensure adherence to best practices laid down by Google - please click here for further information.
Our CMS as standard allows you to control the important meta tags such as “Title and Meta Descriptions” and also H1 headings for each page. For complex E-Commerce sites with hundreds of products we can even automate the population of Meta Data to ensure is page is viewed uniquely by Google.
Likewise, our CMS also allows you to control the content including copy and embed rich media such as imagery, videos and other types of rich media to help make your pages sticky with users.
Structuring site navigation correctly not only benefits usability but can also help search engines such as Google determine the importance of a page meaning that if it is prominent enough in the site hierarchy, it can aid ranking. Every site is different in terms of their status with Google, therefore, additional consultancy can be provided here to offer the best advice.
Following on from both the Google Panda and also Hummingbird algorithums, its vital the correct keywords are targeted which are then reflected into landing pages. A few years ago, sites would set up doorway pages to target variations of the same keyword, this practice is now penalised by Google - see here. Again, we can offer additional consultancy to help you target the correct keywords to target at the right pages to benefit the user and become search engine friendly.
Occupying page 1 positions in Google is every businesses aim and competition in some niches can be intense. For some keywords, it is not possible to target certain keywords unless you have a site that competes in terms of pages, authority and also backlinks. Competitor Research can unravel the mystery behind why some sites ranks and others don’t in addition to unmasking a competitors keyword rankings and therefore their strategy not to mention PPC campaign. It is always recommended that Competitor Research is undertaken inconjuction with keyword research to fully understand the landscape of your niche market.
Although Google in recent years is able to read PDF documents, without unique content, it would be very difficult for the search engine to understand what a page is about. Consultancy can be provided to recommend the style of content required in addition to other elements such as particular words Google maybe looking for to associate the content to the topic or sticky items you might want to include such as imagery and video. In addition, if you are struggling to write key landing page copy, we can help.
Off site optimisation takes place following On page optimisation and builds authority and trust with Google. Why? Although Google is becoming almost like a human editor in terms of understanding the context of a page to determine quality, for the page to rank it would make sense if other sites linked to the page to also endorse its credibility. In SEO land, this is known as link building, however, as the name suggests, the practice of ink building has fallen into disrepute in recent years following Google’s Penguin Algorithm which effectively closed down most of the artificial methods of endorsing pages.
Today, any site embarking on the journey of ranking in Google must build links ethically and strive to build a brand online.
Expert consultancy can be given here covering the latest content marketing and also Social Signals strategies designed to build links naturally to your site whilst also benefiting you in extra traffic and increased brand awareness. Assistance can be given in relation to Google Organic ranking, Local Listings, Youtube video rankings and tips on how to improve visibility in Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Our approach is fundamentally different to many in the industry who rely on outdated and in some cases risky methods, eg content marketing or social media activity should be EARNING links helping you to position your business as experts in your niche, therefore, building authority and trust in Google.
For us one of the best analogies we can think of is that Google is like a jigsaw puzzle. The off page element of SEO has now become multi-layered to the extent that having a robust content marketing and social media strategy affects how your site ranks. That's why you need a company like AWD whom are constantly keeping updated on the industry. We know exactly what your website needs to not only get the higher rankings but keep your placements for the future. Click here to read our blog which provides 10 top SEO tips.
SEO in itself is a highly complex process that requires planning and a degree of forward thinking. The unfortunate fact is that there are a lot of people and companies out there that pretend to know SEO . In personal situations, friends may have had said to dabble in SEO. However, miss information could completely destroy your SERPs (Search Engine Results Page) and as a result your business.
One of the biggest challenges of SEO is that there is so many ways to do it wrong and doing it wrong could be detrimental to your positioning. You could even get removed completely from their listing which has happened to some of the biggest global brands such as Interflora.
Once this has happened it an uphill struggle for the likes of Google to restore their faith in you and restore your listing. In this industry, it is paramount to go down the route of a company you can trust who has a proven track record of gaining high ranking placements over a sustained period of time.
For on-site optimisation, we have you covered. Our development team build your sites from the ground up to meet the strictest of requirements. From there, we carefully structure your content and aid towards achieving your goals and final ranking placements.
With our off site optimisation packages, you’ll get a dedicated SEO specialist to not only continually support your website requirements but market your site, eg help with content marketing and social media side of SEO to achieve the highest placements possible. Whether you’re looking at your main site and SEO from us, or you just want the SEO route we can work with any range of requirements.