SEOSEO Basics: A Beginner's Guide to SEO 2022

SEO Basics: A Beginner’s Guide to SEO 2022

If you already know how search engines work and how important they are, you can move ahead to Section two (though we do recommend reading about Google and Bing’s recommended practices at the end of this chapter).

For everyone else, this article will help with the development of your SEO knowledge as you learn and improve.

What is SEO?

SEO is meant to improve search engine rankings, and it entails certain practices before, after, and during content creation with the goal of increasing the quality and quantity of traffic or visits to your site, as well as the awareness of your brand, through search engine results (also known as “Organic Traffic”).

SEO is as much about users as it is about search engines. It’s about understanding what users search for online, the answers they want, the keywords they use, and the type of content they’d like to see on your site. Knowing the answers to these questions will help you to reach people who are looking for your solutions online.

Knowing the intent of the user or your followers is one of the most important aspects of search engine optimization (SEO), but so is presenting it in a way that Search Engine Crawlers can find and understand it.

SEO Basics

Search engines are automated response bots. They search for billions of articles every day and analyze thousands of aspects to find the most significant and quality content that is most likely to answer your search and place it at the top of the search results.

All of this is done by search engines discovering and indexing all of the content available on the Internet (web pages, PDFs, images, videos, and so on) through a process known as “crawling and indexing,” and then ranking them among the results based on how well they match the query or search term in the process we are referring to as “ranking.”

What is organic search results?

As previously stated, organic search results are those obtained through the process of SEO rather than paid results (i.e. not advertising). These websites were easy to identify because the advertisements were clearly marked as such, and the remaining results were usually “10 blue links” listed below them. But, since the structure of search changes, how can we find free results today?

Today’s search engine results pages (also known as “SERPs”) have more interactive and advertising result formats (referred to as “SERP features”) than ever before. SERP features include “featured snippets”, People Also Ask boxes, pictures, and so on. New SERP features are constantly being introduced, with the majority of them being in accordance with what users are searching for.

Feature Snippets

For example, if you search for “London weather,” you will see the London forecast right in the SERP rather than navigating to a site that may include those forecasts and wasting extra time. And if you search for “Pizza London,” you’ll get a “local SEO” result that shows you the locations of London pizza restaurants on a map.

It’s important to understand that search engines make money from advertisements. Their goal is to better answer all users’ searches (inside SERPs), keep users returning for more searches, and increase their visibility in SERPs for a longer period of time.

Some Google SERP features are absolutely free and appear without your interaction, and they might be influenced by the SEO of your website. “Featured snippets” and related questions (such as “people also ask about” boxes)

It should be mentioned that many other search features, while not paid, are usually unaffected by SEO. These features commonly include features obtained from major data sources such as Wikipedia, WebMD, and IMDb.

Why is SEO important?

While paid ads, social media, and other online channels can drive traffic to websites, the majority of online traffic is driven by search engines.

Organic search results are more comprehensive, appear more reliable to users, and receive more clicks than paid adverts. For example, only 2.8 percent of people in the United States click on paid adverts.

In short, SEO generates roughly 20x of free traffic than PPC on mobile and desktop.

SEO is also one of the few online marketing strategies that, when done effectively, can keep paying off in the long term. If you create high-quality content that deserves to rank for the relevant keywords, your traffic will grow over time, while advertising requires ongoing spending to attract traffic to your site.

Search engines are becoming smarter, but they still require human assistance.

Optimizing your site will help search engines deliver better information, allowing your content to be indexed and displayed correctly in search results.

White hat vs black hat SEO

White hat SEO refers to SEO methods, best practices, and strategies that follow search engine guidelines and are primarily concerned with giving people more valuable information that answers all of their questions.

black hat SEO on the other hand refers to techniques and strategies that seek to top search results by using misleading methods and practices. Although black hat SEO can be effective, it puts websites at risk of being penalized and/or permanently removed from search engine indexing (search results).

It’s so important to be very careful when choosing an SEO expert or agency. Choosing the wrong one can destroy your website or business.

Related Article:

SEO – Types of SEO in Digital Marketing

Google Webmaster Guidelines

Basic principles:

  • Make pages primarily for users, not for search engines.
  • Don’t deceive your users.
  • Avoid tricks intended to improve search engine rankings. A good rule of thumb is whether you’d feel comfortable explaining what you’ve done to a website that competes with you, or to a Google employee. Another useful test is to ask, “Does this help my users? Would I do this if search engines didn’t exist?”
  • Think about what makes your website unique, valuable, or engaging. Make your website stand out from others in your field.

What you should avoid:

Source:

Google Webmaster Guidelines

Bing Webmaster Guidelines

Basic principles:

  • Make your site’s content clear, compelling, engaging, and easily accessible.
  • Make sure that the page titles are clear and related to the content.
  • Backlinks are an indicator of a site’s popularity if they are obtained naturally and without your involvement.
  • Social media and social sharing are positive indicators that can affect how your site ranks in the long term.
  • Page speed, as well as a positive and useful user experience, are important.
  • Use alt attributes to describe photos so that Bing can understand the content and images better.

What you should avoid:

  • Poor content, pages that only include ads or affiliate links, or pages that redirect people to other websites will not rank well.
  • Backlink methods, such as buying backlinks and participating in fraudulent backlink networks, can result in your site being fully de-indexed.
  • Make sure your URL structures are organized, clear, and keyword-inclusive. 
  • Dynamic parameters might cause your site’s content to be duplicated, causing issues with search results.
  • Avoid using non-letter characters in URLs that describe their content, are brief, and contain keywords as much as possible.
  • Avoid utilizing links in Javascript/Flash/Silverlight; also, avoid using them within content.
  • Content duplication
  • Stuffing keywords
  • Displaying different content to search engine crawlers than what is displayed to visitors.

Source:

Bing Webmaster Guidelines

Guidelines for representing your local business on Google

If the businesses that use Seo strategies have a physical location and a headquarters, whether it is for stores, customer service, or whatever, they are eligible for Google My Business. Google offers guidelines for local businesses like these that regulate what you should and shouldn’t do while creating and managing these listings.

Basic principles:

  • Ensure that you are eligible for inclusion in the Google My Business index; however, you must have a physical address, even if it is your home address, and you must connect with customers face to face, either at your location (such as a retail store) or at theirs (like an agency).
  • Describe your local business’s name, address, phone number, website address, business categories, hours of operation, and other details honestly and correctly.

What you should avoid:

  • Create Google My Business listings for businesses that are not eligible.
  • Misrepresentation of any of your basic business information, such as generating listings for fake addresses.
  • Instead of using real street addresses, use postcode  or virtual postcode.
  • Misusing the review section of your Google My Business listing by posting fake good reviews of your business.

Source:

Guidelines for representing your local business on Google

Fulfilling user intent

Instead of violating these rules to manipulate search engines to ranking higher, concentrate on understanding and fulfilling the user’s goal. When someone searches for anything, try to give them the desired result. Whatever the search query or keyword, the content that the user is looking for is “the user’s goal” which he wants to see on your website, whether it is the answer he wants to know, something he wants to buy, or a video he is looking for.

Your goal as an SEO expert is to provide users with the content they want in the form they want to see as quickly as possible.

Types of searches:

  • Informational: Finds information. Example: “what is search engine optimization?”
  • Navigational: Searches for a specific site. Example: YouTube’s website
  • Transactional: Looking to buy something. Example: Good laptop for gaming and school

By searching Google for the relevant keyword(s) and analyzing the SERP, you can get an understanding of a user’s intention. For example, if someone searches for wedding images, they are very likely to check for photos of brides during the wedding or even photos of wedding clothes.

Also, analyze the content that your top competitors provide on the first page of search results.

Having relevant, high-quality content on your website can help you rank higher in search results and, more importantly, will help you build credibility and trust with your online audience.

I hope This guide will help you become understand the SEO Basics, if you have any questions feel free to comments down.

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