What is SEO and its importance for a website ?
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine. Search Engine Optimization refers to the collection of techniques and practices that allow a site to get more traffic from search engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing). In general, the earlier (or higher ranked on the search results page), and more frequently a site appears in the search results list, the more visitors it will receive from the search engine’s users.
SEO can be divided into two main areas: off-page SEO (work that takes place separate from the website) and on-page SEO (website changes to make your website rank better). A website is fully optimized for search engines when it employs both on and off-page SEO.
Optimizing a website may involve editing its content, HTML and associated coding to both increase its relevance to specific keywords and to increase visibility to the activities of search engines. Other SEO practices are promoting a site to increase the number of backlinks, or inbound links.
Why use SEO?
If a website is currently ranked 100 on Google for the search phrase, “how to increase traffic to your website” but wants to rise to #1, this website needs to consider SEO. Because search engines have become more and more popular on the web, nearly anyone trying to get seen on the web can benefit by doing little SEO work.
SEO’s are broadly categorized as:
White Hat SEO:
An SEO tactic, technique or method is considered as White Hat if it follows the followings
- If it conforms to the search engine’s guidelines.
- It ensures that the content a search engine indexes and subsequently ranks is the same content a user will see.
- If it does not involve any deception.
- It ensures that a Web Page content should have been created for the users and not just for the search engines.
- It ensures the good quality of the web pages
- It ensures the useful content available on the web pages
Always follow a White Hat SEO tactic and don’t try to fool your site visitors. Be honest and definitely you will get something more.
Black Hat or Spamdexing:
An SEO tactic, technique or method is considered as Black Hat or Spamdexing if it follows the followings
- Try to improve rankings that are disapproved of by the search engines and/or involve deception.
- Redirecting users to a page that was different from the page the search engine ranked.
- Serving one version of a page to search engine spiders/bots and another version to human visitors. This is called Cloaking SEO tactics.
- Redirecting users from a page that is built for search engines to one that is more human friendly.
- Repeating keywords in the Meta tags, and using keywords that are unrelated to the site’s content. This is called a Meta tag stuffing.
- Calculated placement of keywords within a page to raise the keyword count, variety, and density of the page. This is called Keyword stuffing.
- Creating low-quality web pages that contain very little content, but are instead stuffed with very similar key words and phrases. These pages are called Doorway or Gateway Pages
- Creating a rogue copy of a popular web site which shows contents similar to the original to a web crawler, but redirects web surfers to unrelated or malicious web sites. This is called Page hijacking.
- Mirror web sites by hosting multiple web sites all with conceptually similar content but using different URLs.
These are some of the SEO techniques…
1. Creating unique, accurate page titles
A title tag tells both users and search engines what the topic of. Accurately describes the page’s content. Choose a title that effectively communicates the topic of the page’s content. Create unique title tags for each page Each of your pages should ideally have a unique title tag, which helps Google know how the page is distinct from the others on your site.
2. Improve the structure of your URLs
Google is good at crawling all types of URL structures, even if they’re quite complex, but spending the time to make your URLs as simple as possible for both users and search engines can help. Some webmasters try to achieve this by rewriting their dynamic URLs to static ones; while Google is fine with this, we’d like to note that this is an advanced procedure and if done incorrectly, could cause crawling issues with your site. URLs with words that are relevant to your site’s content and structure are friendlier for visitors navigating your site.
3. Make use of the “description” meta tag
A page’s description meta tag gives Google and other search engines a summary of what the page is about. Having a different description meta tag for each page helps both users and Google, especially in searches where users may bring up multiple pages on your domain a particular page is.
4. Make your site easier to navigate
The navigation of a website is important in helping visitors quickly find the content they want. Create a naturally flowing hierarchy (Add navigation pages). Put an HTML site map page on your site, and use an XML Sitemap file.
5. Offer quality content and services
Content is king. Creating compelling and useful content will likely influence
Your website more than any of the other factors discussed here. Improving content and services should be a priority, regardless of the type of website.
5. Optimize your use of images
Image-related information can be provided for by using the “ALT” attribute. Use brief, but descriptive filenames and ALT text.
6. Use heading tags appropriately
Heading tags (not to be confused with the <head> HTML tag or HTTP headers) are used to present structure on the page to users. Heading tags are an important website component for catching the user’s eye, so be careful how you use them.
7. Getting indexed
The leading search engines, such as Google, Bing and Yahoo!, use crawlers to find pages for their algorithmic search results. Pages that are linked from other search engine indexed pages do not need to be submitted because they are found automatically. Some search engines, notably Yahoo!, operate a paid submission service that guarantee crawling for either a set fee or cost per click. Such programs usually guarantee inclusion in the database, but do not guarantee specific ranking within the search results.