What is SEO and why is it important?

SEO Keywords Digital Marketing

What is SEO?

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the combination of strategy and science to achieve a better search ranking on pages and websites on search engines. With search being one of the most primary ways a person will discover content online, becoming the top of the list of what a user sees when searching a certain subject online can be fundamental to a organisation being discovered in order to receive traffic on their website or to generate leads for their desired KPI (Key performance indicator).

SEO can come in either “Paid” or “Organic” results and both have very different strategies to come to the same result, making a website/page more visible when on a search engine. “Paid” SEO involves using tools such as Google ads where an organisation or person can enter in keywords and phrases they believe best match their content. When a user enters these keywords and phrases into a search engine, for this example ‘Google’ when using Google Ads the website will be displayed as an ‘ad’ but will be displayed on the top of the user’s results. “Organic” SEO consists of changes that can be made internally on the website or page to optimise elements such as Headings and alt Tags (Descriptions of images used) to help a search engine understand the relevancy to a users search and the website with the desire to reach this audience.

The benefits of SEO

For a typical search query, the number one result will receive 40-60% of the total traffic for that query. This means getting as high up the ranking for a specific search query is fundamental for a organisation/person’s website to have SEO in mind. A study conducted by Chitika Insights (June 2013) reported that 91.5% of Google traffic stays on the first page. This means if SEO is not implemented properly and a Website found on pages further down then page 1, then a huge majority of the target audience could potentially never click on the website via that search query.

Examples of SEO strategies

Creating user-friendly pages – This would mean users will spend more time engaging on your pages, which can increase the ranking in search results. This includes text readability, being mobile and desktop friendly & using images as this can help the visual of website.

Creating content – Content such as Blogs, Guides and Videos. This will generate traffic to the website if the content is high quality and useful to the user and their query search.

Improving the backend of your site – This can come in the form of the speed of your website, where if a user is finding that pages are taking too long to load, they may try to find the answer to their search query elsewhere.

Monitoring and optimizing – Monitoring and optimizing are critical elements of an SEO strategy. They help you maximize your budget by adjusting your plan to ensure you’re getting the most from your strategy, this means checking Metrics (Measurement) such as Traffic, CTR (Click Through Rate) and Bounce Rate.

Main KPIs to be tracking

KPIs (Key Performance Indicator) are situational and are dependent on the specific type of website. These KPIs can be tracked using tools such as Google Analytics. Moreover, these are the top KPIs that could be most relevant to all types of websites:

Average Engagement Time – This means the average time that a user spends using the website’s content that can be found within the website/page.

Conversion Goals By Percent-Based Metrics – This would be suitable for a website which is ran by a business who would have set goals, such as wanting users to make a purchase or joining their mailing list. The results can be put in percentages of how many users clicked on the website to carry out this goal.

New And Returning Users As KPIs – Having returning users would mean that the content on the website/page is of a high standard and is informative or useful to the user. This can be a good indicator if certain pages can be improved upon.

Average Time On Site – This KPI can be used across all types of websites as it is the fundamental purpose of a website to keep users informed or entertained. The higher the average amount of time spent on a website indicates if the content is purposeful or user friendly.