What is Search Engine Optimization, and Why do I need it?

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What is SEO optimized website?

The first search engines emerged in the early 90s. Until Google appeared in 1996, many were created, including Yahoo! The Web boom began. People realized that money could really be made from them. Thus they came to the conclusion that they needed to attract traffic. What was the best method of attracting traffic? Search engines. At that time, the owners of the webs began to think about how they could reach the first positions … SEO was born!

SEO focuses on organic search results, that is, what is not paid:

But hey, let’s get to what matters and the reason why (I think) you are reading this chapter:

What is SEO?

Search engine optimization is the process of improving the visibility of a website in the organic results of different search engines. It is also frequently named by its English title, SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

SEO is one of the “disciplines” that has changed the most in recent years. We just have to look at the large number of updates that there have been to Penguin and Panda and how they have given a 180 degree turn to what was understood by SEO until recently. Now with SEO, what Matt Cutts himself describes as “Search Experience Optimization” or what is the same, “all for the user,” is pursued.

Although there are thousands of factors that a search engine relies on to position one page or another, it could be said that there are two basic factors: authority and relevance.

  • Authority is basically the popularity of a website. The more popular it is, the more valuable the information it contains. This factor is the one that a search engine takes more into account since it is based on the user’s own experience. The more content is shared, the more users found it useful.
  • Relevance is the relationship a page has to a given search. This is not simply that a page contains a lot of times the search term (in the beginning, it was like that) but that a search engine relies on hundreds of on-site factors to determine this.

You may also be interested in reading: How to learn SEO for beginners.

SEO can be divided into two large groups:

On-site SEO

On-site SEO is concerned with relevance. It ensures that the web is optimized so that the search engine understands the main thing, which is the content of the same. Within the SEO On-site, we would include the optimization of keywords, loading time, user experience, optimization of the code, and format of the URLs.

Off-site SEO

Off-site SEO is the part of SEO work that focuses on factors external to the web page in which we work. The most important factors in off-site SEO are the number and quality of links, presence in social networks, mentions in local media, brand authority, and performance in search results, that is, the CTR that our clients have. Results in a search engine. Surely you think that all this is very good and that it is very interesting but that you are here to find out why you need SEO on your website and what benefits you will get if you integrate it into your online strategy.

Once we know what SEO is, we must differentiate whether or not we follow the search engine’s “recommendations.” Black Hat SEO or White Hat SEO

Black Hat SEO

Black hat is called the attempt to improve the search engine positioning of a web page using unethical techniques or techniques that contradict the search engine guidelines. Some examples of Black Hat SEO are Cloaking, Spinning, SPAM in forums and blog comments, or Keyword Stuffing. The black hat can provide benefits in the short term, but it is generally a risky strategy without continuity in the long term, and that does not add value.

White Hat SEO

It consists of all those ethically correct actions that comply with the search engine guidelines to position a web page in the search results. Given that search engines give greater importance to the pages that best respond to a user’s search, the White Hat includes the techniques that seek to make a page more relevant to search engines by adding value to its users.

Why is SEO important?

1. SEO is important because everyone uses search engines. Many people search every day, especially on Google, the most popular search engine in the world, for the words of their interest, both to satisfy their own personal curiosity and to acquire more information in anticipation of a possible purchase;

2. SEO is important because it helps build a solid brand image. Being present with your website in high positions on the SERP (the results page that the search engine shows every time a user makes a search) and being present for multiple search keywords helps the site/brand to attract the attention of users who, in this way, will begin to become familiar with it and consider it authoritative for that particular area;

3. SEO is important because it makes it easier to reach potential customers. As already anticipated, people, in the decision-making process that precedes a purchase (and, more generally, when they are interested in something) often search the Internet for the information they need;

4. SEO is important because it is easier to be reached by potential customers. Those who search on search engines for activities and places of interest near their locality have the possibility to more easily reach that activity that has worked well in Local SEO (the optimization of a company website for local search results on search) and, which, therefore, is clearly visible and with complete and correct information on Google and its “similar”;

5. SEO is important because it delivers longer-term (and more consistent) results than PPC campaigns. The latter, in fact, guarantee the maximum of their effectiveness as long as you pay for the advertisements and they cost more on average.

We also recommend a reading: Learn SEO for WordPress websites.