Search engine optimization has become so complex over the years that it’s difficult to include everything in this quick SEO tutorial for beginners. However, we will attempt to include some of the core concepts in order to give you a taste of what’s involved in optimizing a site to get top rankings in Google.
SEO Tutorial for Beginners
The basic goal of search engine optimization is to give Google what it wants. Keep in mind that Google’s goal is to provide the most relevant answers to their users. There are billions of webpages included in Google’s index and they use more than 200 factors to figure out the most valuable content related to a query. All of these 200 factors can be broadly divided into on page and off page factors.
On Page Factors
This category of factors include everything that is under the control of the Webmaster. Some of the examples of these factors are meta tags, headings tags, meta description, quality content, website speed, user experience, schema markup, internal link structure and a variety of other factors.
If you already have a website, the best way to begin optimizing on page factors is to use various tools available online to do a complete audit of the website. These tools will provide a report outlining the problems discovered with various webpages of your website. It may include optimization of meta tags, title tags, adding tags and various other such things. However, none of the tools available today can figure out the quality of the content present on a web page as well as the overall user experience.
The problem with content quality is that everyone has a different definition of quality. Most of the experts in the industry agree that quality simply means content that satisfies the users with regards to their query. It should provide them the information they are looking for.
There is a common misconception that quality is related to a number of words on a webpage. While longer articles do tend to rank better but only if the content is useful and helps users. A 2000 word article that merely provides superficial information is not high quality content. For instance, if you are publishing a guide on buying coffee machines, you should try to cover every single aspect related to buying coffee machines for different needs.
Another important part on page SEO is user experience. User experience not only helps with SEO but also with conversion rate. Try to make it as easy as possible for users to navigate your website through the navigation menu or through links on the sidebar.
Off Page Factors
This category mainly deals with links from other website. In simple terms, it’s a popularity contest. However, sheer number of links doesn’t matter and again, the quality of websites linking to your website matters much more. Therefore, you should try to obtain links from other authority domains such as popular news websites, popular blogs in your industry or popular research publications among others.
Overall, webmasters should focus on creating a website that is useful for their visitors. It should provide the required information in a way that is easy to understand and easy to navigate for the users. High quality content is the foundation of a well optimized website. So, focus on creating useful content and use available tools in order to optimize your website and to gain higher rankings in the search engine result pages.