This guide will provide all the information to Search Engine Optimization and how will it change the game in 2020.

What Is SEO

Firstly, SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization

It is not advertising, although it includes components of advertising. It is not a Public Relations (PR) as well, but it provides monitoring and crafting your brand’s image. 

What-Is-SEO

So if it’s not advertising or PR, then what exactly is SEO. Well, the fundamental goal of SEO is – getting targeted visitors to your website. 

Search Engine Optimization includes a numerous amount of activities that you perform to get highly targeted visitors to your website from search engines (such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.)

 

How Search Engines Work

How-Search-Engine-Works

Well, before we go deep into SEO. Let us first understand what search engines are and how do they work. 

Search engines are like a library. Where they have copies of hundreds of web pages and whenever you search for a query, it searches for the most relevant results in its index and shows it to you. 

To show the most relevant results, search engines follow an algorithm. Nobody knows how this algorithm work except for some clues. 

Such as freshness of the content, the relevance of the page, etc. We’ll discuss many other factors in detail further in the article. 

 

How SEO works

So by now, you might have understood how search engines work and what their work is – to show the best quality content to their users for a specific term.

How-SEO-Works

SEO helps in showing search engines that your content is of high quality and relevant to the users on a specific keyword. 

Every search engine has its algorithm to show the most relevant content to its users. It is impossible to cover all of them in ones. So we’ll be starting with one of the most popular and used search engine: Google. 

 

What Factors Affect SEO

Well, there are more than 200 factors. But there have been reports that there are approx. 10,000 factors that affect SEO. 

Nobody knows all the factors, but we do know some of them. So let us discuss those factors. 

 

1) Crawlability 

Crawlability or crawling is the process through which Google discovers new content on the web. They use a computer program known as a spider.

SEO-Crawlability

But Google crawlers won’t find your website unless you have a backlink to your site. We’ll discuss what a backlink is in detail further. Time being think that your homepage has a backlink from a website, and that website is in Google’s index. 

So, the next time spiders crawl that website. It will find a link to your website – will crawl your site and index it.

 

2) Mobile Friendliness

Mobile-Friendly

According to a report, 52.2% of the traffic comes through mobile phones and is growing month by month. 

Even Google in 2018 – shifted to mobile-first indexing, means Google will use the mobile version of your website for indexing and ranking.

Even, nearly 7 in 10 consumers stop engaging with your content that doesn’t display correctly on their device.

So if your website is not optimized for mobile, you won’t be able to rank for a specific term for the long-term or make the users stick around your content. 

To check if your website is mobile-friendly or not, follow this link, Google’s mobile-friendly testing tool

 

3) Pagespeed

Pagespeed plays a vital role in ranking your website. The main reason behind this is – Google doesn’t want its users to stay dissatisfied. So if a user clicks on a search result and the website takes long to load – it will lead to user dissatisfaction. 

So, first of all, check your website speed at Google’s Pagespeed Insights tool.

 

4) Backlinks

A backlink is a link that links from one website to another. It works as a ranking signal – when one site links to another website, it sends a message to Google that the content is trustworthy. 

Backlinks

So if you want to rank for any keyword, backlinks will help you a lot. The higher the number of backlinks a webpage has. The higher the chances of a webpage to rank. 

There are a lot of ways on how to create backlinks for your website, which we’ll discuss in the upcoming articles.

 

5) Authority

The higher the authority of a webpage, the higher the chances of its to rank on a specific keyword. 

Backlinks are one of the facts that help in increasing page authority. So getting backlinks from high-authority websites will help you improve your website authority and trust in the eyes of Google. 

Other than backlinks, internal and external linking also plays a significant role. 

In 2016, Google removed the public PageRank score. So you can’t check your webpage authority. But there are some third-party tools such as Ahref, Semrush, etc. 

They have a similar metric by the name URL Rating—this rating is shown after taking into account the quality and quantity of backlinks.

 

6) Content Quality

Quality of the content is one of the significant factors that can help you rank not just on Google on all other search engines as well. Every search engine wants to show the most reliable and useful content to their users.

Content

To check the quality of content, they look at EAT – Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. We’ll learn more about this in the upcoming articles. 

Not just EAT, if you want to improve the quality of content. Look at these below factors as well. 

  • Stick to a 7th or 8th-grade reading level. 
  • Use short sentences and paragraphs. 
  • Link to useful resources where appropriate. 
  • Use images to make the content look attractive. 
  • The freshness of the content

These are some of the factors that affect SEO. In the upcoming articles, we’ll go deeper into every topic. Till then, stay tuned.