SEO is all the strategies used to improve the visibility of a web page through its positioning in Google.
Has what we just told you sounded like Chinese? Does the term ring a bell but you just don’t understand how SEO works?
So, this post comes as a ring to your finger. And is that today we explain:
What is SEO (but in addition to the definition, we also tell you why it is so important to your business)?
The different types of web positioning that exist.
The key concepts you must know to understand how Google works (and positions).
Prepare yourself, because not only are you going to find out what the happy SEO consists of, but you are also going to discover what are the keys to positioning your website.
What is SEO or SEO positioning?
We start with a definition:
SEO (Search Engine Optimization, which means search engine optimization) is all the techniques or actions aimed at increasing the traffic of a website thanks to improving its positioning in different search engines.
Although SEO is the best-known term, it can be called in different ways:
- Web positioning.
- Search engine optimization.
- Positioning in Google.
- Organic or natural positioning.
- SEO positioning.
- And so, different variants.
From the definition we must keep two ideas:
Increased visibility: the goal of SEO is to get more visits to a page.
Search Engine Optimization: Although Google is the king of search engines (and whenever we talk about SEO we refer to Google), the meaning of SEO applies to all search engines (Bing, Yahoo, etc.).
So far everything clear, we now go to the heart of the matter.
Why organic positioning is important in your business strategy
If you are reading this post it is because you have a physical or online business or, at least, you are thinking of creating it (for now, let’s assume that you have already launched it).
Well, that means that you have a website where you offer or sell your products and services. Great. But how do you get your potential clients to reach that website? This is where SEO comes in. To attract traffic (or what is the same, visits) to your page, you can establish different strategies:
- Advertising (Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Instagram, etc.).
- Social networks.
- Networking (guest posts, events, etc).
- SEO (here content marketing would also enter).
This is what Google shows us (incognito) if we search for that keyword. First, there is Idealista, then Fotocasa and thirdly, Pisos.com. Of those 60,557 potential clients, these first 3 results, the ones that are positioned higher (hence SEO positioning), are the ones that have the most options to gain clients. Why?
Simple. When appearing in the first positions, they are the first in which people are going to click.
In addition, users have already assimilated the idea that the search engine puts the most relevant things first, so we understand that in the first results we have more options to find what we are looking for.
Types of SEO that exist in web positioning
Within what is SEO web different branches can be differentiated. We see it.
- According to the aspect that SEO works
In this case, search engine positioning is divided into 2 main branches: On-Page and Off-Page.
SEO On Page
We call SEO On-Page factors all the techniques we use to optimize our own website. For example:
- The content of the web.
- The internal structure.
- Indexability (we will see later).
- The web architecture.
- The images.
These factors are the most technical of SEO, but they are also responsible for 90% of the success of an SEO strategy. At Tu Posicionamiento Web we are experts in SEO On Page, which differentiates us from other companies that only focus on SEO Off-Page and leave web optimization aside.
We talk about SEO Off-page factors when we refer to parameters that do not depend on the website itself, that is, they are external factors. For example, links that point from other websites to ours.
For many years, these links have been manipulated to fool Google, but as we’ll see later, the search engine king can’t be fooled that easily anymore. Although backlinks (external links that point to our website) are still important within the algorithm, they are less and less. The search engine tends more to value other aspects such as user experience. Hence, we are reluctant to use this type of strategy.
For us, it is much more effective to work on a good content marketing strategy backed by SEO copywriting, because this way we will get natural (and not penalized) links to us.
And we cannot forget the off-page positioning based on branding (your brand image), which for us is essential.
- According to the strategies to use
We enter a more controversial world, and it is that SEO can also be defined by talking about the 3 famous hats of SEO:
- White Hat SEO.
- Black Hat SEO.
- Gray Hat SEO.
Depending on the strategies that the SEO expert uses, one or another hat will be assigned to him. Let’s see it.
- White Hat SEO
White Hat SEOs comply with the quality guidelines for Google websites. This means that we never use illegal search engine tactics, or that we do not attempt to trick you into manipulating positions in Google’s search ranking.
The reason: is it worth it to risk all your current and future web positioning (there are websites that never recover from a penalty) for using illegal techniques?
- Black Hat SEO
And as you can imagine, the black hat SEOs are the ones that try to manipulate Google’s search rankings. Black hat SEO techniques look for loopholes that Google cannot detect to disrupt the rankings to their advantage, or to the benefit of their clients.
- Gray Hat SEO
What are the gray hats? Those who stay a bit on the line and risk more than whites, but do not use the more risky techniques of Black Hat SEO.
Concepts related to Google positioning that you should know
Now that you know why SEO is key in your business, it is important that you know some terms. Therefore, we are going to give you a small “SEO dictionary” with which to understand the basic concepts of how web positioning works.
- Crawlers, robots or Google spiders
We start with the first rare term.
You put a keyword in the search engine, hit the button, and, suddenly, the search engine shows you a lot of results. But how do all these contents get to Google’s databases? This process is divided into 2 phases:
The crawl (the “read”).
Indexing (we will talk about this in the next point).
That reading of all the contents that exist, Google does it through:
- Robots or tracking bots.
There are 3 ways to call them, but they refer to the same thing. These Google mini-agents enter each page and track all content. So to speak, they read them first, and then file them.
- Indexing or how Google puts your content in its databases
This even rarer word refers to the process Google performs to incorporate content (and subsequent updates) into its databases. This is very important since if your website has an indexing problem (it is usually due to a technical problem), Google will not be able to reach or store all the pages of your website, with a harmful result for positioning.
Remember the example we gave you before «rent flats Madrid». Now imagine that you created a specific landing page to attack that keyword, but that due to an indexing problem, Google cannot read it. That would mean losing the option of attracting 60,557 potential customers each month.
It is understood, right?
On the other hand, if a website has a good indexability factor and allows Google to navigate through it quickly, the search engine will index more internal pages of that page in its database.
That is why we always have to make things easy for robots or spiders, as this will result in a greater probability of appearing in the first positions when someone searches for related keywords.
- The Google algorithm
We go with the origin of everything.
Spiders have already crawled and indexed content, now the most important thing is missing … assign a position in relation to a keyword. Google always ensures that its positions by looking at the quality of the content, but how does it determine which posts have more quality?
But do not think that it is an easy exam, Google values more than 200 criteria within the algorithm and as you can imagine, the search engine does not reveal how it works (it is not interested in the SEO’s trying to manipulate the results).
We explain some of the points that the algorithm takes into account so that you can get an idea of everything that it values:
User experience: it is increasingly important for the search engine since it understands that the better the user experience (UX), the better the content is.
Relevance: agreement of the content that the page offers in relation to the keywords that you want to position. We give a silly example so that it is understood. Your website would not be relevant if you want to position yourself for car keywords, but all your content only spoke of motorcycles. It would have to do, but it would not be entirely relevant.
Authority: if you had to hire a professional to perform a service for you, who would inspire you the most confidence? A benchmark in the sector or someone who has just started? The first, logical, experience is a degree. Google determines with different criteria the authority of a page in a subject. The more authority, the easier it will be to the position.
Upload speed: yes, Google also addresses many technical issues and this is one of them (and very important). Your page has to load fast if you want to earn extra points in order to improve your organic ranking.
Navigation: very important, as is web architecture. In addition to helping the search engine better understand “what is going on” on your website (the keywords you attack), it is decisive for the user experience to be good.
This is only a small sample, but remember that the algorithm handles more than 200 criteria to assess in which position a content should be.
- What are the keywords
As we saw at the beginning, «renting an apartment in Madrid» is a keyword, but it is also a very interesting keyword because it has a very high search volume (60,557 people search for that keyword on Google per month). That is why it all starts with good keyword research, if you do not know what are the keywords with the highest volume of searches, you will not be able to optimize your website correctly to attract more traffic.
- What are penalties and why you have to be very careful with them
The art of SEO is to tell Google how to rank each web page, but without falling into spam, or the bad practices penalized by Google.
Ah, Google penalizes?
“Yes, of course, and very harshly to those who breach their policies.
Since 2011, Google took the problem it was having from spam in its search results more seriously, so it implemented the algorithm to fight it. Don’t forget that Google’s success is in offering its users quality results, so they must take care of this matter to the maximum.
Among all those algorithms to improve search results and try to eliminate spam, are the 2 most famous worldwide known: Google Panda (2011) and Google Penguin (2012).
Changing the Google Panda algorithm: Panda aims to eliminate all low-quality content from the displayed results. To do this, Google begins to look at the frequency of updating, whether the contents are duplicated (both within the website itself or if they are copied from other websites), the length of the texts, etc. In this way, Panda has managed to eliminate web pages with low-quality content from the search results, which are of little use to the user.
Change to the Google Penguin algorithm (Penguin): before Penguin, there was a technique used by some short-term SEOs (SEO Black Hat), which consisted of launching thousands of links to the web pages of their clients. In this way, they managed to position them in first positions with certain keywords in a very short time (fast web positioning). Now, with “the Penguin” the effect of abusive links to web pages has been limited.
After the penguin, all the pages that applied these techniques were damaged, and to this day, many of them have still not been recovered. Therefore, all these series of «techniques» must be kept away from your business, since you could spoil the work of years in a very short time.
Panda and Penguin are the most famous updates, but that doesn’t mean they are the only ones. RankBrain (2016) or Fred (2017) came later. You think that the algorithm is constantly being updated and that there is usually a deep change every year.
How to work your search engine optimization to attract more traffic
You always have to see search engine optimization as a long-term strategy. Think that we are talking about some of the basic pillars for your online business to work.
That is why we always follow the guidelines set by Google and we do not want to deceive you at any time. Our clients are more protected from algorithm changes, since we do not seek short-term successes, but rather grow in a safe and stable way.