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SEO Basics: Why Is It Important?

24th Apr 2017 / By Jack Dunne

What is SEO?

For the real beginners, it stands for Search Engine Optimisation. It’s essentially our way of telling search engines, like Google, exactly what our website and pages are about, and why it may be a perfect match for a searcher’s query.

Google are pretty shady. They’ll never fully reveal how their algorithms work. They do publish updates, notes and warnings but won’t disclose the specifics. Luckily, you don’t have to do the trial and error; there’s superfluous amounts of information out there about best practice but at the heart of it, it comes down to natural, useful, and honest content.

Unfortunately many people take part in what’s called ‘Black Hat SEO’ which entails aggressive tactics like paying for links, keyword stuffing, spamming forum comments, and misleading content. However we strive for useful, truthful web pages that benefits the viewer and therefore ensures discoverability, a longer time on the page, and therefore a higher conversion rate.

Why Is SEO Important?

What is the point in producing new content if no one can find it?

This is something we reiterate with clients who are getting their new website built by us. We want to ensure that people looking for their services or products can find their site, and even better if they find it before they find their competitors. Search traffic is among the highest percentage of all traffic on the web. The first page of the search engine rank pages (SERPs) take 92% of the traffic, with the top result itself stealing around 33% of the clicks. It’s no wonder we all want our domains to reach that top spot.

Not only can we guarantee that search traffic dominates traffic in that sense, but we know that searches are a request from individuals that are looking for a specific answer to their query. Whether they are looking for a ‘Web Design Agency in Brighton’ or ‘How to tie a bowtie’, that user is looking for a web page just like yours, and has a much higher chance of finding what they’re looking for within your page, than say, if they stumbled across you. Unlike social media, which faces them with web pages they may be interested in, or referral traffic form other sites, which may present them with a relevant topic or source, search traffic ensures a higher conversion rate, longer time spend on the page, and a lower bounce rate (visiting the landing page only then leaving the site).

Best Practice

As this is the basics of SEO, here our our top takeaway tips for good SEO:

  • Be honest, and useful – So much of what is entailed in good SEO is ensuring that your web pages are honest, and aren’t misleading in any way. If you’re telling Google your site is about web design services, make sure it actually is about web design services. Make sure everything is relevant, including your written content, URLs, page titles, and captions.
  • Read-up – There’s heaps of information out there about SEO best practice. Check out Moz’ Beginners Guide to SEO, and research the quick-wins and technicalities of how search engines work.
  • Imagine Google as a robot – Think about how a robot would understand what your web pages are about – what keywords do you particularly want Google to associate with your site and how do you think searchers would try to look for you?
  • Get technical – Don’t be scared off by the word ‘technical’ – there are a few little things you can change to make your website more ‘crawlable’ or findable, you can read up about our tips about basic digital marketing tools like Siteliner and SERPS checker on our blog.

At Neptik we design and develop bespoke websites for businesses in a wide range of industries. As a lot of what is entailed in SEO is technical, we know that good SEO and good web design go hand-in-hand. If you want to find out more about what we do, you can find out here, or drop us a line.