What Is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?
Search Engine Optimization is the process of improving the visibility of a website on organic ("natural" or un-paid) search engine result pages (SERPs), by incorporating search engine friendly elements into a website. A successful search engine optimization campaign will have, as part of the improvements, carefully select, relevant, keywords which the on-page optimization will be designed to make prominent for search engine algorithms. Search engine optimization is broken down into two basic areas: on-page, and off-page optimization. On-page optimization refers to website elements which comprise a web page, such as HTML code, textual content, and images. Off-page optimization refers, predominantly, to backlinks (links pointing to the site which is being optimized, from other relevant websites).
2 Kind of Search Engine Optimization (SEO):
On Page SEO: On-Page SEO refers to how well your website’s content is presented to search engines. This type of SEO gets your site on the list of search results for a given keyword search and can usually be improved quickly. Even though it accounts for only about 25% of how search engines score and rank your website, it is worth tackling first since it is easy enough to do and provides almost immediate improvement.
Off Page SEO: Off-Page SEO refers to your site’s “authority” on the Internet
On page vs Off page characteristics:
Where does SEO begin?
The first thing that one must realize about search engine optimization is that to be implemented correctly it must be broken down into 2 distinct factors "on-page" and "off-page" criteria. Always remember that search engines do not consider "websites" they consider the "pages" of those websites. There should never be a debate as to which is more important between "on page" and "off page" characteristics as the truth is both are equally as important. However once one defines the two there is a logical order in which they should be considered. On page/Off page characteristics defined . Simply stated, On Page Characteristics are anything you can effect within the construction of a single page. This includes everything that is placed in the headers, body, and on-page links (both internal and external). Special attention should be given to: Title, meta description, H1, H2...H6, <b>, <i>. Keyword proximity, keyword density and relevance...more on this later.
Off Page Characteristics refer to all links (both from pages contained within your own website and from pages of other websites) that point to your specific page(s). The term "page rank" is specifically designated to evaluate and weight "off page" criteria. Special attention should be given to: anchor text, Reference tags, "title" attribute and "target_"... more on this later.
Here we’ll discuss how to make a SEO friendly website through proper on page optimization:
How WC3 Validation Works: WC3 stands for “Wide Web Consortium,” which is essentially a company that develops standards for code on the web. If you are going to use WC3 validation, it means that you are making sure your website is up to the coding standards set out by the Wide Web Consortium—it checks the HTML code for proper markup. If you validate your site and are following these standards, the ideas is that your website will have the best chance of working on different browsers. A few more reasons to validate your website include:
· Catch Missing Errors.
· Prepare for Future Changes.
· Look Professional.
· Good Learning Tool.
URL Structure Optimization: First of all, let me start by saying that it is always better to call in an SEO manager early in the development stage, so there is no need to make sometimes hard-to-implement tweaks afterwards. From an SEO point of view, a site’s URL structure should be:
· With emphasis on the right URLs.
Keyword Research & Analysis: Keyword research truly is the life blood of internet marketing. If you know who is searching and what they are searching for then it makes your choices as to "what and where" to offer your products much more obvious. For the purposes of this tutorial however we will strictly concentrate on evaluating the best keywords to use in order to increase conversions from visitors that come by way of the major search engines.
Meta Tag Optimization: The meta tags are a very important part of the HTML code of your web page. They are read by the search engines but are not displayed as a part of your web page content. Usually they include a concise summary of the web page content and you should include your relevant keywords in them. Most meta tags are included within the 'header' html code of a website. They are title, description, keywords and robot tags, but currently the most important two are title and description. These two are displayed by search engines when listing your website in search results.
Title Tag: It could be said that the title is one of the most important factors for a successful search engine optimization of your website. Located within the <head> section, right above the Description and Keywords tag, it provides summarized information about your website. Besides that, the title is what appears on search engines result page (SERP). The title tags should be between 10-60 characters. This is not a law, but a relative guideline - a few more symbols is not a problem, you won't get penalized for having longer title tags, but the search engine will simply ignore the longer part. Make sure the most important keyword you have decided to fight for is used in your title tag and as early in the phrase as possible.
Meta Keywords: Lately, the meta keyword tag has become the least important tag for the search engines and especially Google. Many websites have stopped adding keywords meta tags.
Meta Description: Meta description tags, while not important to search engine rankings, are extremely important in gaining user click-through from SERPs. These short paragraphs are a webmaster’s opportunity to advertise content to searchers and to let them know exactly whether the given page contains the information they're looking for. The meta description should employ the keywords intelligently, but also create a compelling description that a searcher will want to click. Direct relevance to the page and uniqueness between each page’s meta description is key. The description should optimally be between 150-160 characters.
Image Tag: It is very important to understand that images are not technically "part" of the web page file, they are separate files which are inserted into the page when it is viewed by a browser. So a simple web page with one image is actually two files - the HTML file and the image file. The example on the right illustrates this. In this example the two files are both located in the same folder. The HTML file includes an image tag which refers to image1.jpg. When the HTML file is displayed in a browser, it requests the image file and places it on the page where the tag appears. As you can see, the most important attribute of the image tag is src, which means source and tells the browser where the image file is.
Content Optimization: This means they reward content that is well organized and well written, and they continue to get better and better at weeding out content that is artificial -- for example content that is stuffed with extra keywords. Attempting to "game" the search engines is, in the long run, a recipe for failure. Instead, focus on writing high quality, engaging content that people will want to read, and that is presented well for the web medium. If you follow this single strategic principle, you are most of the way towards writing search engine optimized articles.
Competitor Analysis: Competitor analysis is an essential component of corporate strategy. It is argued that most firms do not conduct this type of analysis systematically enough. Instead, many enterprises operate on what is called “informal impressions, conjectures, and intuition gained through the tidbits of information about competitors every manager continually receives.” As a result, traditional environmental scanning places many firms at risk of dangerous competitive blindspots due to a lack of robust competitor analysis.
Competitor analysis has two primary activities, 1) obtaining information about important competitors, and 2) using that information to predict competitor behavior. The goal of competitor analysis is to understand:
Website Analysis: A complete website analysis to improve your SEO. Site Analyzer is an optimization tool for your website. This SEO tool will allow you to analyze your website and generate a multi-point audit sorted by category (accessibility, design, texts, multimedia and networking).
The analysis report is made of more than 50 criteria based on the optimization of your server configuration, HTML tagging, text content, multimedia content, internal and external networking and page popularity.
This SEO analysis allows you not only to check the performance of your site but also to improve the visibility of the website for search engines. In this way you favor natural ranking of your site and increase the potential number of visitors to your website.
All these criteria mean that this SEO analyzer is a powerful asset for your website .
RSS (Rich Site Summary) Feeds Creation: Originally RDF Site Summary; often called Really Simple Syndication, uses a family of standard web feed formats to publish frequently updated information: blog entries, news headlines, audio, video. An RSS document (called "feed", "web feed", or "channel") includes full or summarized text, and metadata, like publishing date and author's name. RSS feeds enable publishers to syndicate data automatically. A standard XML file format ensures compatibility with many different machines/programs. RSS feeds also benefit users who want to receive timely updates from favorite websites or to aggregate data from many sites. Subscribing to a website RSS removes the need for the user to manually check the website for new content. Instead, their browser constantly monitors the site and informs the user of any updates. The browser can also be commanded to automatically download the new data for the user. Software termed "RSS reader", "aggregator", or "feed reader", which can be web-based, desktop-based, or mobile-device-based, present RSS feed data to users. Users subscribe to feeds either by entering a feed's URI into the reader or by clicking on the browser's feed icon. The RSS reader checks the user's feeds regularly for new information and can automatically download it, if that function is enabled. The reader also provides a user interface.
Robot.txt Creation: The robots exclusion protocol (REP), or robots.txt is a text file webmasters create to instruct robots (typically search engine robots) how to crawl and index pages on their website.
Sitemap Creation: If you've submitted a Sitemap, you'll be happy when you see the additional information in Webmaster Tools revealing how your Sitemap was processed. You can find this information on the newly available Sitemap Details page which (along with information that was previously provided for each of your Sitemaps) shows you the number of the pages from your Sitemap that were indexed. Keep in mind the number of pages indexed from your Sitemap may not be 100% accurate because the indexed number is updated periodically, but it's more accurate than running a "site: example.com" query on Google. The new Sitemap Details page also lists any errors or warnings that were encountered when specific pages from your Sitemap were crawled. So the time you might have previously spent on crafting custom Google queries to determine how many pages from your Sitemap were indexed, can now be spent on improving your site. If your site is already the creme de la creme, you might prefer to spend the extra free time mastering your ice-carving skills or blending the perfect eggnog.