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  • Alise Talley

SEO: What Is It & How Can It Improve Your Rankings

Updated: Apr 17


What is SEO

If you’re new to digital marketing, you’ve probably encountered the term SEO several times. There are thousands of posts on improving SEO, but what exactly is it?


SEO, which stands for search engine optimization, is a series of methods web page owners can use to increase their rankings on search engines like Google.


How Did SEO Start?


When search engines like Google were first starting out, they calculated rankings by the number of times a keyword or phrase was used. The webpage that used it most often would appear higher on the SERPs (search engine results page). This led to a practice called keyword stuffing, where people would put as many keywords on a web page as possible to gain better results.


Search engine algorithms have changed, and methods like keyword stuffing are no longer effective. But before we look at the best SEO methods, let’s break down how the algorithms work, specifically Google’s.


The algorithm begins with a process called crawling. The program will crawl through the information offered on the web. It is then “indexed” according to the type of content the web page contains.


It does this by examining your on-page and off-page content. On-page content includes, but isn’t limited to, titles, metadata, images, videos, and blog posts. Off-page content refers to links to content outside your site and reviews and directories.


Once it’s indexed, it’s filed away until a user makes a search. After a search is made, it will rank the pages in the index in the order it believes will best satisfy the user. This is calculated through the user’s location, web page upload date, keywords, and the trustworthiness of the content.


How You Can Get Higher Rankings


There are many ways you can improve your SEO. Your site should be updated regularly, contain accurate and well-researched information, offer a good user experience, be functional on mobile devices, and have fast loading speeds.


To improve your off-page SEO, you can register your company on reviews like Yelp and ask your customers to leave reviews. You should also try to increase the number of backlinks used.


Backlinks, also known as inbound links, are external links used by other sites that link their content to yours. In the eyes of search engine algorithms, increasing the number of backlinks means the information you put out is more trustworthy.


However, don’t try to cheat the system. People have tried to buy backlinks on sites in the past, and when caught, it reflected badly on their SEO rankings. You can spread your influence ethically by creating shareable content, whether it’s informational graphics, talking about a new trend, or reposting your own engaging content on platforms like YouTube.


When it comes to having visible content, learning about SEO is essential. By incorporating SEO into your platform, your website will gain more views, and your business can get more attention.

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