SEO definition: The term SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and describes all measures that improve the visibility of a website in a search engine. Better visibility means a good placement of the website for relevant search terms, the so-called keywords, in the search results. The goal of SEO is an optimal ranking: The website should be represented as high as possible in the results for certain search terms to quickly discover and take advantage of the offerings on the website. To achieve this, off-page measures (all optimizations outside of a website) and on-page measures (direct adjustments on the page) are implemented.
When it comes to SEO, a distinction is made between Black Hat SEO and White Hat SEO. Black Hat SEO includes all measures that violate the Google Webmaster Guidelines and use spam methods. This includes structurally hidden content to increase the relevance of a page to a keyword and the automated linking on external pages, often with meaningless texts, to increase the link’s popularity. These measures are to the detriment of a page in the long term, as Google penalizes the affected websites with a loss of visibility. The pages usually have difficulty recovering.
On the other hand, there is White Hat SEO, which respects the search engine’s quality guidelines and is geared towards the added value for the user. This type of SEO is considered reputable because it achieves sustainable increases in visibility and enables a stable ranking. Whenever SEO is spoken of, white hat SEO is usually meant.
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SEO Function Of On-Page Measures
Onpage Search Engine Optimization refers to all direct measures on your page that serve search engine optimization. In addition to technical aspects, this primarily concerns content-related factors that positively influence the user experience. Content with high quality added value for the user and a logical and clear structure of the page make the interaction attractive for the user. This results in positive user signals, which describe the behavior of the users on the website and are recorded and evaluated by Google. These can be, for example, metrics such as the bounce rate, the time-on-site, or the page views – measurement parameters that provide information about the relevance and attractiveness of a page for the user.
Important SEO on-page factors are:
- Text: Need-oriented content is what makes a page relevant to the target group. The content must be of high quality, well structured, and provided with the relevant keywords.
- Keywords: The keywords are the terms that dominate a text on a page and are strategically placed. As a rule, they are search terms that the user searches for on the search engine and for which he hopes to find relevant articles in the search results. The search results appear in the form of snippets, snippets of text that contain the searched keyword. These snippets can be designed using meta descriptions.
- Meta descriptions: The Meta descriptions contain information about a website and can be individualized by the website operator. The meta descriptions must contain the relevant keyword of the page if they are displayed in the search results for the keyword. On the one hand, the meta descriptions must give a brief but accurate impression of the content of the page, and on the other hand, they can be formulated so that they arouse the reader’s interest. They often serve the purpose of a teaser in the search results.
- Internal linking: A meaningful internal linking of sub-pages within a website serves on the one hand for the user to navigate; on the other hand, it enables the transfer of link power to other pages – for example, if a page with a good ranking refers to another sub-page with a not so good ranking. The anchor texts should be meaningful (preferably contain the keyword of the linked page) to inform the user about the content behind the link.
- Information architecture: On the one hand, information architecture means the higher-level content structure of a website, which essentially determines the user experience and characterizes the communication of the content. On the other hand, a targeted information architecture must also take place for unique content. Whether the design of texts or the labeling of images: All content must be prepared so that the user and the search engine can easily capture it.
The factors for selecting keywords are based on the target group’s needs, the relevance of the topic for the company, and the competitive situation in the Google rankings. As an SEO agency from Berlin, we analyze your specific situation and are happy to advise you on possible measures and strategies.
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SEO Function Of Off-Page Measures
With off-page SEO, the focus is on gaining backlinks: links that forward from external sites to your site and rated by Google as a recommendation. The authority of the linked pages plays a central role. Backlinks from pages with high credibility, thematic relevance, and a lot of organic traffic are weighted more heavily than backlinks from pages with low authority, little traffic, and correspondingly low visibility in the search engine.
The more backlinks a website collects from pages with high authority, the higher the reputation with Google. A positive ranking of the website expresses this factor. The acquisition of backlinks can be operated proactively through seeding. Relevant content is provided in formats such as e-books. White papers or individual guest contributions are strategically distributed and placed on the desired pages, which in turn refer to the source, their website, with a link. Content that is distributed to gain backlinks is also called link baits.
SEO And Content Marketing: First The User, Then The Machine
Search Engine Optimization and content marketing are now seen as two sides of the same coin. On the one hand, content marketing serves to attract and retain customers through needs-based added value. On the other hand, the content must be prepared so that it is used for SEO. Both aspects complement each other: If the content is prepared for the user, the user signals will be positive and evaluated and rewarded accordingly by the search engine. Simultaneously, when determining the parameters for evaluating websites, Google is constantly orienting itself towards the user’s needs. So if you have the user in mind first, you will also meet the requirements of the search engine.