SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION
SEO Get Found the Natural Way
Webcrawlers are robots (programs) that systematically browse the web. Their job is to index webpages so that search engines are able to match all those pages to search terms that users have entered. The search engines then apply an algorithm to determine which page provides the user with the best answer to their question.
The Main Thing
Search is about only 1 thing: answering people’s questions.
Search engines will show your page to a searcher if you provide the best answer to their question. Google establishes the quality of your page (and website) against competitors using the 3 pillars of E.A.T.
“Expertise” Do you have great content that people want to read?
“Authoritativeness” Are other sites citing your content as a valuable source of info?
“Trustworthiness” Do you have good reviews?
- Does the content present information in a way that makes you want to trust it, such as clear sourcing, evidence of the expertise involved, background about the author or the site that publishes it, such as through links to an author page or a site’s About page?
- If you researched the site producing the content, would you come away with an impression that it is well-trusted or widely-recognized as an authority on its topic?
- Is this content written by an expert or enthusiast who demonstrably knows the topic well?
- Is the content free from easily-verified factual errors?
- Would you feel comfortable trusting this content for issues relating to your money or your life?
Your Money or Your Life!
Your E.A.T. is even more important when it comes to pages and sites that deal with “happiness, health, or wealth”. This content includes various medical health, safety and financial info. We have several healthcare clients so we can attest that Google takes this seriously.
What’s Your Score?
Domain Authority (DA) is primarily a measure of the how many other websites link to your site and the quality of those links. One of the ways to gauge your Domain Authority is with a handy-dandy tool from Moz that will give your page a score on a 100-point, logarithmic scale. New websites always start with a 1.0 but the “logarithmic” part means it’s easier to boost your score from 1 to 10 than it is to get from 90 to 100. Interpreting whether your score is “good” or “bad” is a bit more nuanced. DA serves as an indicator of how you measure up against competitors so this can be highly industry-specific.
The Tennants of the SEO Faith
Your site needs to be fast, optimally set up for search engines and easy for users to find all that great content.
There are a multitude of ways to achieve this:
- Content (is King) – articles and web pages with consistent, high-quality, original content that answer user’s questions.
- On-page SEO – this is some of the more mundane (but still important) work, including: image compression, url naming, title tags, meta tags, header tags, image alt attributes, link structure, broken link checking, robots.txt file, sitemap and lots of other things.
- Local SEO – this is all about developing a strong presence on sites such as Yelp, TripAdvisor, Bing Places and Google My Business (Google Maps). It’s a good idea to regularly post to and update the information on these sites, especially the business name, address and phone number.
- Social Media also impacts your SEO, since social sites are one of the primary web traffic sources.
- External link building (getting backlinks from other sites, preferably within your industry or directly related).
- Regular website maintenance is also super-important since this impacts site speed, functionality and other performance items that impact the user experience (UX). This includes caching, updating plugins or removing unnecessary plugins as well as keeping the programming language and wordpress up to-date.
The 800 lb Google in the Room
Of course, Google is the big boy and, of course, it’s important to optimize for what’s likely to provide 80% or more of your site’s traffic. As detailed above, Google isn’t the only place to get traffic… but suffice it to say it’s pretty important.
If you’re not on page 1, you’re not going to get any real visibility from Google.
If you’re on page 1 but below the fold (not in the top 5-6 organic results), you can expect about 4 users out of 100 to click through to your website.
Most new websites won’t start to rank on Google for 2 YEARS or more!
When people type a question into a search engine that relates to your business, we want YOU to show up at the very top of the list.