The Ultimate SEO Guide

Person pointing to Google Analytics on computer screenSo you’ve built a website and then people just come, right? Unfortunately, that’s often not the case which can be very frustrating (especially if you’ve spent a lot of money and resources on developing your site). So, rather than spamming all your friends and family, how do you get people to know about it and find you? Thanks to Search Engine Optimization (aka “SEO”), and Search Engine Marketing (ie. “SEM”), there are a number of things you can do not only to help the health of your website, but ultimately to boost your rankings in search engines like Google, which will gain you visibility and traffic. Where to start? We’re here to help break it all down for you in easy to understand terminology. Use this cornerstone page to navigate to all the areas of We Rock Your Web that discuss SEO and you’ll learn why this is such a critical part of your brand’s online presence.

What is Search Engine Optimization?

SEO is short for Search Engine Optimization, which is the process of enhancing a website’s content and components (images, URL structure, etc.) so it can be more effectively discovered by search engines (like Google). In it’s early days, SEO was purely for search engines to understand your content more easily. But today, with so many web pages on the world wide web (and knowing that over 80% of all web traffic comes from search engines) it’s become a critical tool to help businesses stand out from the crowd and rise to the top of SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) — or what you see when you type a search into a search engine’s search box. Learn More About the Basics of SEO.

Why SEO?

If you want people to find your website the old fashioned way through word of mouth, then you don’t need to worry about SEO. But, if you’re like most companies, you probably rely on organic search (i.e. people finding you through search results), so you should get on the SEO bandwagon. Not in the least because hundreds to thousands of people may be searching for your product or service, every single day! Just imagine if you were at the top, getting all that traffic and all those customers in your door. If you’re reading this, you’re probably already convinced, but if you need a quick refresher, check out our article on Why You Need SEO.

What Is Indexing?

Computer with SEO on screenYou might be wondering “how exactly do search engines find my website?” Thousands of robots called “spiders” (sent out by the search engines) crawl the Internet looking for pages. For example, the spider used by Google is called Googlebot. Once it finds an individual page it then becomes “indexed” meaning it’s in the search engine’s database of content to choose from when offering up search results. That means your page can now be found by just about anyone on the planet – well, in theory at least. If you have a million competitors indexed for the same thing, they might have trouble finding you at the bottom of that large pile (ie. on the 100th page of the search results). This is why it’s everyone’s goal to get to the first page, which is what SEO and SEM are all about. But first, you need to get your content indexed. Almost every site automatically becomes indexed, but it could take a day or two for the spiders to find you. It’s an essential first step in being discovered so Find Out How Search Engines Find Your Website to ensure your content is being indexed.

What Are Keyword Trends?

So you’ve got your website pages indexed, great. But how do you know that readers are actually searching for your content? A big part of the SEO game is analyzing what your visitors are searching for and then producing content accordingly. Our Keyword Trends Article shows how easy it is to use to use various keyword tools to find out what customers in your industry are searching for.

How Do I Get My Website to Show up First in Search Results?

Want to land on top of the huge heap of search results, most importantly in front of your competitors? We get it. We hear you. And, let’s be honest, we all want to get to the top! We get asked this million dollar question all the time. While Google’s secret sauce and the methods driving their search “algorithms” are more secretive and protected than Fort Knox, there are basic tenets and common sense that can get you ranked without being a technical SEO nerd. We’ve spent years researching, learning, and applying our SEO learnings, and we’re willing to share them with you for free. Check out our in-depth guide on How to Optimize Your Website along with a handy SEO Checklist and with some effort, you’ll be zooming to the top in no time.

Are There SEO Tools That Can Help?

Just when you think you’ve done everything you can to optimize your site, a new Google update comes along and then you’re shifting gears again. Even for companies with whole teams dedicated to SEO it can be overwhelming to keep up with the ever-changing industry (yes, including seasoned SEO’ers like us). So that’s why we can’t recommend adding SEO tools enough to help lighten your workload. They will become your new best friend and you’ll learn to love them. Since there are dozens of these platforms on the market, we’ve put together a comprehensive, detailed guide that can make your job easier. In our Best SEO Tools article, we’ve reviewed the best for each category including the pros and cons for each company along with pricing, features and more (updated regularly).

Why Trust Our Reviews?

We conduct our reviews in an unbiased fashion using independent writers who do hours of research gathering feedback from various sources around the web including customers, social media and more. Check out our Review Process for details.

Got Questions?

Hopefully, you’ve gained some valuable lessons about SEO and have a bit more insight on how it can help your business. But understandably, you probably still have questions. We’re here for you! Just leave us a comment on the respective post you were reading, or you can send us a Reader Question and someone from our team, or one of our readers, can chime in with their expertise.