SEO stands for search engine optimization, which is a set of practices designed to improve the appearance and positioning of web pages in organic search results1. Organic search results are the unpaid listings on a search engine results page (SERP) that the search engine has determined are most relevant to the user’s query1. SEO is important because organic search is the most prominent way for people to discover and access online content, and a good SEO strategy can increase the quality and quantity of traffic to your website1.
The basic steps of SEO are:
- Crawl accessibility: make sure that search engines can access and read your website by following web standards and using proper markup2.
- Compelling content: create content that answers the searcher’s query and provides value to your audience2.
- Keyword optimization: research and use the terms and phrases that your target users are searching for, and include them in your content, titles, URLs, and meta tags2.
- Great user experience: design your website to be fast, easy to navigate, and engaging for your visitors2.
- Share-worthy content: produce content that earns links, citations, and amplification from other websites and social media platforms2.
- Title, URL, and description: craft these elements to draw high click-through rate (CTR) in the SERPs by using relevant keywords and enticing descriptions2.
- Snippet/schema markup: use structured data to enhance your web pages with rich snippets, such as ratings, reviews, images, or videos, that can stand out in the SERPs2.
SEO is not a one-time process, but an ongoing practice that requires constant monitoring, testing, and refining. Search engines are constantly updating their algorithms and ranking factors, so SEO practitioners need to stay on top of the latest trends and best practices. SEO also involves understanding your competitors, your audience, and your goals, and adapting your strategy accordingly. SEO is a complex and ever-changing field, but it can also be rewarding and fun for those who are willing to learn and experiment.