Until now, Google has offered single-page websites powered by the information in a company’s Google Business Profile. From March 2024, Google will take these websites offline.
Why is SEO Important?
SEO. It’s a commonly used term when it comes to building and running a website. But why is SEO important? And what role does it play?
More than simply tech-jargon, SEO is a vital tool essential for anyone looking to build awareness, drive traffic and grow the customer base of their business.
Whether you are looking for where to start with SEO or the many benefits when executed right, our guide has all the answers and more.
What is SEO?
So, what does SEO actually mean? Well, SEO is an abbreviation of ‘Search Engine Optimisation’ – the process of optimising a website to ensure it can compete with other websites to appear near the top of a search results page.
Optimising a website involves a full range of steps, designed so that when a search engine looks at all the elements which make up the website, it can rank it in terms of relevance to a user’s search intent.
Nearly all those in the field of SEO will optimise their site with Google’s algorithms firmly in mind when writing for SEO. In the UK, as of 2022, Google holds the vast majority of the market with an 86.31% share – whereas Bing holds 8.39% and Yahoo! only 2.25%.
How Does a Search Engine Rank a Website?
A search engine, such as Google, will rank a website using bots to crawl it. These bots crawl the website, gathering information to develop an index of all its pages. Once collected, the search engine’s algorithms analyse the index, determining each page’s order on a results page for a given search term. These algorithms follow several criteria to determine order. Google’s EAT criteria provides a good example of what the algorithms look for when ranking a website.
What is EAT?
Standing for expertise, authority and trustworthiness, EAT, are the three key factors Google uses to determine ranking.
- Expertise – How relevant is it to the user’s search intent? And does the website exhibit relevant knowledge of the search term?
- Authority – How reputable is the site?
- Trustworthiness – Can the website be trusted? And do other websites also trust it?
Following the criteria outlined in EAT and improving upon them are essential for successful SEO optimisation.
However, while ensuring a website impresses the search engine is crucial, it is also essential to not forget about the actual user. The majority of Google’s algorithms and updates have their roots firmly in ensuring searchers experience the best user experience.
A website still needs to perform its day-to-day function – to be easy to understand and navigate. With a mountain of competing websites – anything which annoys a user, such as a complex layout or long load times, is likely to see them quickly leave for another website.
Thankfully, both user and search engine algorithm intent largely overlap, ensuring there is often very little in terms of balancing both requirements.
What Are the Benefits of SEO?
Understanding what SEO does is all well and good, but why exactly should you optimise your website for it? Simply put, a well-optimised website provides several benefits, many of which can provide a business with that vital advantage over its competitors. Here, we describe the 5 key benefits SEO brings.
1. Brings More Quality Traffic to Your Website
The primary role of SEO is to drive traffic to a website, and the more traffic a website gets, the more leads it creates and sales it makes- ultimately equalling an increase in business.
A high ranking result for your business on a search engine provides a direct link to your website at a time when the user is actively searching for what you may offer.
2. Increases Trustworthiness
Generally speaking, the higher up a page ranks, the more likely a user will be to trust it as a reliable source. Most users rely on a search engine to provide results relevant to their search intent and will nearly always choose an option from the 1st page.
However, it is not just ranking on the 1st page that increases trust. The higher up the page a result appears, the more likely a user is to click through. For example, on the 1st page of a Google search, the top result has an average click-through rate of 28.5%, while 2nd place drops to 15.7%. And this only decreases for each position, with 10th place having a click-through rate of 2.5%.
3. Improves Brand Awareness
The higher a site appears within search results, the more likely users are to notice your business, whether they end up clicking through or not. Over time, these repeat appearances can begin to develop trust and positively impact how individuals may start to see your brand.
4. Performance Can Be Tracked
One of the key benefits of SEO is how easy it can be tracked and measured. Conversions e.g. leads and sales (and their sources), rankings and organic traffic all can be tracked, providing a clearer insight into whether particular strategies are achieving the desired results and helping guide future campaigns.
5. Options for Most Budgets
One of the great advantages of SEO is that budgets do not necessarily need to be massive to achieve results. For instance, smaller budgets can be used to target local SEO only.
The SEO process simply requires funding to manage, typically through content creation and link building, to support the relevant keywords, alongside technical SEO to ensure the website is crawled to target services or queries. This approach allows for SEO to scale alongside a business, ensuring that when a company becomes more profitable, more money can be allocated to the SEO budget to focus on further services or queries.
Where to Start With SEO
Looking to implement SEO into your business strategy? It can be confusing knowing exactly how and where to start. However, for anyone looking to optimise their website for SEO, there are several necessary first steps to consider.
Choose Keywords Carefully
Selecting keywords to rank for based on search volume, relevance, potential traffic and difficulty are vital for developing a strategy as well as understanding who your online competitors are. Digital tools, such as SEMRush, Moz and ahrefs, are a helpful way of building an idea of the keywords best suited for your business.
Create a Website Based on Chosen Keywords
Having chosen your keywords, you will next either need to create a brand new website guided by these terms or implement them into your pre-existing one.
Optimise the On-Page SEO
The optimisation of all visible aspects of your website, on-page SEO covers everything, including titles, copy, imagery and videos. All this content will need to be informative, relevant, high-quality and feature the necessary keywords to highlight value to a search engine to help with ranking. Browser plugins, such as SEO Pro Extension, can be used to quickly few a page’s vital SEO statistics.
Optimise the Off-Page SEO
While on-page SEO is the optimisation of all aspects on your website, off-page SEO involves all the external optimisation practices, such as building backlinks and optimising your Google My Business page.
High quality backlink building is undoubtedly the best method for optimising off-page SEO, as these high-valued links from external sources back to your website provide one of the clearest indicators to a search engine your business is trustworthy and valuable.
Check All Technical Aspects
Alongside on-page and off-page SEO optimisation, it is essential to ensure all technical aspects, such as submitting sitemaps, undertaking regular Google Search Console health checks, mobility usability, etc., are performing to their potential. This is commonly termed technical SEO.
Sounding a little too technical? Asking the experts at a digital marketing agency to wade through the complexities and ensuring things are right the first time around can often be the better option. If you require professional help with your SEO, why not get in touch with the team here at Advance Online today.
Conclusion – Why is SEO Important?
Essential for the successful development ,management and performance of a website, SEO offers a wealth of positives – from building trust to improving awareness to increasing leads, revenue and profit. It is crucial to recognise the value of SEO, not least for remaining competitive against similar businesses who may also be taking full advantage of the many benefits.
However, the world of digital marketing is not solely restricted to SEO, there are several other strategies that can help boost online presence. These include PPC, a pay-per-click advertising model where advertisers run ads and pay each time one is clicked, and social media ads, paid adverts designed to appear exclusively across social media platforms. Content marketing is another highly implemented digital marketing strategy involving the creation and distribution of digital content such as articles, videos, social copy and infographics.
Here at Advance Online, we provide a comprehensive range of digital marketing services, including SEO, to develop and improve a business’s online presence. Get in touch with us today to see how we can help.
Combining precise location data and clear business information with live customer feedback, Google Maps has increasingly become a reliable source of information for consumers.
For a local business owner, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) can be a daunting endeavour, but it’s also essential
A vital consideration for any business with a digital presence, SEO, otherwise known as search engine optimisation, is essential for several reasons, ranging from credibility to visibility.
Any local business owner who has carried out SEO tasks or paid someone else to do the work, has most likely been left wondering how long it will take for their website to rank on Google.
Join Our Mailing List
Get notified of the latest blog posts