What is SEO and How it Works: I jump at the chance to consider SEO like a game amusement, a focused diversion like running a long-distance race, playing poker, or another aggressive undertaking throughout everyday life: the science and art of landing a position.
Obviously, each game has its standards, and if you don’t have a clue about the guidelines of the game, you doubtlessly can’t win.
A decent method to comprehend the “diversion” of SEO is to contrast it with the way toward landing a position. It has its activity wanted (your keywords), its resume (your site), its references (your inbound links), and its prospective employee meeting (your site landing).
What is SEO, and how does it work? It is the way to get activity from the “organic,” “Free,” and “natural” search results.
In this POST, I will give you a theoretical structure to understand (SEO) “Search Engine Optimization.” When you have an applied structure, you can allude back to it as you plunge into certain undertakings, such as optimizing a landing page or requesting inbound links. It’s a guide that will keep you situated the correct way.
UNDERSTAND THAT SEO PARALLELS GETTING A JOB
Let’s consider the search for a job. How does the job market work? People want to “be found” as the “ideal” candidate for a position. So what do they do? Four important things:
1. Job Desired – Identify the Desired Job.
Job seekers look inside their souls and identify the job they want. If they’re smart, they look outside at the job market as well and look for connection points between the job of their dreams and the jobs in demand in the labor market.
For example, my dream job is sipping margaritas in Puerta Vallarta, Mexico, writing science fiction novels, but the demand for that isn’t so high. So, I’ve taken a passion for language and turned that into a job as an SEO writer and consultant. Notice how the “job desired” matches “keywords” as in (SEO consultant).
2. Resume – Create a resume.
Job seekers create a keyword-heavy resume explaining the job they want and their qualifications for that job. If, for example, they want a job as a BMW auto mechanic, they create a resume that emphasizes keywords like “auto mechanic,” “auto repair,” and even “BMW repair” by prominently displaying them in the right places,
including the subject line of emails, they send out to prospective employers. Employers “scan” resumes, looking for those resumes that “match” their keywords. Notice how “keywords” are embedded in the written resume.
3. References – Cultivate References.
Beyond a great resume, the next aspect of the job search is cultivating great references. Knowing the boss’s wife, having the head of the BMW auto mechanic school, or someone else important or influential put in a good word can elevate your resume to the top of the heap.
In short, strong references get your resume looked at, substantiate that your resume is factually accurate, and possibly get you a job interview. Notice how “references” are external validations that you are as great as your resume claims.
4. Job Interview – Wow Them Face-to-Face.
Once you get their attention, what’s next? The job interview is the next step towards landing the job; it’s the “free glimpse” of what you have to offer that “sells” the employer on making a financial commitment by hiring you. Notice how a “job interview” is a “free” taste for you as an employee.
The use of something free is obvious once you notice it, and notice how strong websites usually offer customers something free as well.
The marketing equation is: job desired > resume > references > job interview > job.
Hopefully, you can already see that SEO is a lot like getting a job. How so?
5. Identifying the job you want equals identifying keywords in demand.
Before you put virtual pen to virtual paper to build your website, you have to understand your business value proposition and who wants what you have to sell. “Keywords” connect what you have with what customers want. This is called “keyword research.”
6. Creating a resume equals creating a strong, keyword-heavy website.
In a sense, your website is your business resume, and it needs keywords placed on it in strategic places to “talk to” Google and human searchers. And just as with a job search, you have to research the hot-button keywords people are searching for and place those in strategic positions. This is called “on page” SEO.
Just as you cultivate references to elevate your resume to the top of the heap, you cultivate inbound links, fresh buzz, and social mentions to elevate your website to the top of Google searches.
Getting other websites to link to you and social media sites like Google+ or Twitter to mention your website is called “off-page” SEO.
8. The job interview equals the website landing.
Once you get noticed, your next step is a fantastic job interview. The equivalent of the job interview is the landing behavior on your website.
Once they land from Google, you want them to “take the next step,” usually a registration or a sale, just as at a job interview, which leads to the final step, getting hired or making a sale.
The SEO equation is keyword research > on-page SEO > off-page SEO > website landing > sales inquiry or sale.
Keep this conceptual framework that SEO is like a job search in the back of your head as
you read through this Workbook. Here’s a simple model of the parallels:
job desired = keywords = identify keywords that customers search for
resume = “on-page” SEO = create a keyword heavy, easy-to-understand website
references = “off-page” SEO = solicit many inbound links, social authority/mentions, and freshness via blogging
job interview = optimize the “landing page experience” to lead to registration or a sale.
Can it be that simple? Yes.
Do most people have bad resumes? Yes.
Do most people have bad websites? Yes.
Does that mean that your resume or website, has to be bad? No.
Indeed, the fact that most people do SEO badly means that it is a huge opportunity for you and your company.
A few simple changes, such as placing your keywords into strategic positions on your website, can have a huge impact!
You don’t have to run faster than the bear, just faster than your buddy!
Just like your resume, your website does NOT have to be perfect. It just has to be BETTER than that of your competition. And your competition is not made of Albert Einstein and Madame Curies, but just regular guys and gals, most of whom probably know less about SEO than you do.
We assume you have learned much about SEO and how it works. If not, don’t worry; we explain more deeply (what SEO is).
How Seo Works with KEYWORD RESEARCH
Let’s drill down into the first element, “keyword research,” the equivalent of identifying a job you want that’s also in demand in the marketplace. We’ll get into some cool tactics and tools in the next post, but for now, here are the steps:
- Write down your Business Value Proposition with an eye to the “words” that “describe” what you have that people want.
- Look for “words” that connect “what you sell” with what “customers want.”
- Brainstorm how customers might search for Google to find your company, product, or service.
- Write down a “keyword list” with special attention to those keywords that are really, really hot matches connecting a customer who’s “ready to buy” with “what you have to sell.”
At the end of this process, you’ll have a list of keywords that your customers type into Google.
What is “ON PAGE” SEO
Let’s drill down into the second element, “on page” SEO, the equivalent of a great resume. What are the steps?
We’ll assume that you have your keyword list in hand; that is, you know “which job” you want, or in SEO terms, which keywords you want to optimize for. Once you know your keywords, where do you put them?
In terms of “on page” SEO, the main places you put your keywords are as follows:
1. Page Tags. Place your keywords strategically in the right page tags, beginning with the TITLE tag on each page, followed by the header tag family, image alt attribute, and HTML cross-links from one page to another on your site.
2. Keyword Density. Write keyword-heavy copy for your web pages, and pay attention to writing quality. Complying with Google’s Panda update means placing your keywords into grammatically correct sentences and ensuring your writing contains similar and associated words vs. your keyword targets.
3. Home Page SEO. Use your home page wisely by placing keywords in relatively high density on your homepage and, again, in natural syntax, as well as creating “one-click” links from your home page to your subordinate pages.
4. Website structure. Organize your website to be Google-friendly, starting with keyword-heavy URLs, cross-linking with keyword text, sitemaps, and other Google-friendly tactics.
“On the page” SEO is all about knowing your keywords and building keyword-heavy content that communicates your priorities to Google, just as a good resume communicates your job search priorities to prospective employers. We have investigated “on page” SEO more deeply in the SEO for beginners guide articles.
What is “OFF PAGE” SEO
Let’s drill down into the third element, “off-page” SEO, the equivalent of great references. Here, you do not fully control the factors that help you with Google (unlike in “on-page” SEO),
So, the game is played out in how well you can convince others to talk favorably about you and your website. Paralleling job references, the main strategic factors of “off-page” SEO are as follows:
1. Link Building. As we shall see, links are the votes of the Web. Getting as many qualified websites to link back to your website, especially high authority websites as ranked (secretly) by Google, using keyword-heavy syntax, is what link building is all about. It’s that simple and that complicated.
2. Social Authority / Mentions. Social media is the new buzz of the Internet, and Google looks for mentions of your website on social sites like Google+, Twitter, and Facebook, as well as how robust your profiles are.
3. Freshness. Like a prospective employer, Google rewards sites that show fresh activity. “What have you done lately?” is a common job interview question, and in SEO, you need to communicate to Google that you are active via frequent content updates such as blog posts and press releases.
“Off-page” SEO is all about building external links to your site, just as getting good references cultivates positive buzz about you as a potential employee. We’ll investigate “off-page” SEO more deeply in Chapter Five. Oh, and due to the recent Google algorithm change called Penguin,
We’ll emphasize that you want to cultivate natural inbound links instead of artificial links that scream “manipulation” at Google! It’s good believable references that help you in a job search, and, post-Penguin, it’s good believable links that help you with SEO.
What is SEO Strategy Set to LANDING PAGE GOAL
Let’s drill down into the fourth element, “Landing Page Goals” (See what is landing page is), the equivalent of great job interview skills. The point of a great website isn’t just to get traffic from Google, after all. It’s to move that potential customer up your sales ladder – from website landing to registration for something free (a “sales lead”) or a sale.
So, in evaluating your website, you want to evaluate each page and every page element for one variable: do they move customers up the sales ladder?
Is the desired action (registration or sale) visible on each page, and if so, is it enticing to the customer, usually with something free like a free download, consult, free webinar, and the like?
Just as after a job interview, your family and friends ask whether you “got the job,” after a Web landing, you ask yourself whether it “got the action,” such as a registration or a sale.
Web traffic, just like sending out resumes, is not an end but a means to an end!
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