8 Most Frequent SEO Faqs
In short: Optimizing your website to show up as relevant as possible for users on Google.
SEO is the process of optimizing a website and its content to be discovered by individuals looking for related terms and information on Google. The term SEO also describes the process of making web pages easier for search engine indexing software, referred to as "crawlers," to locate, check, as well as index your site.
The meaning of SEO is straightforward; many new to SEO, however, have more specific questions such as:
- Why is there so many different pricing around SEO?
- How do you know how much money is required to spend on SEO to get results?
- How can you differentiate “good” SEO advice from “poor” SEO advice?
The most critical search engine optimization questions are how you can leverage SEO to help drive more high quality and relevant traffic, leads, and finally, sales for your business.
Every day there are billions of searches online. We stopped asking our friends, parents, and relatives for answers because Google gives us more accurate answers. Alone in Malaysia, 98.29% of the population are using Google to search for answers. Malaysia claims 16.53 million online shoppers (around 50 percent of the national population).
With such a massive amount of traffic online, if your business is not showing up when people search for relevant terms on Google, how much money do you think you are leaving on the table?
How does Google determine which pages to return in response to what people are searching for?
Google's algorithm is not only complicated but also logical:
- Google display results for users that are high-quality and relevant information to the searcher's query.
- Google's algorithm understands relevancy by "crawling" your website's content (words) and assessing whether such content is relevant to what the searcher is looking for, based on the keywords it contains and other "ranking signals" factors.
- Google determines the "quality" of a page or URL by several means, but a site's link profile - the number and the quality of another website that links to your page and website - is the most critical factor.
Additional ranking signals that are being evaluated by Google's algorithm are:
- How people engage with a site (Do they find the information they need and remain on the site (Bounce Rate), or do the users "bounce" back to the search page and click on another link within a short time? Or do the users ignore your listing in search results altogether and did not click-through?)
- A site's loading speed and its "mobile friendliness."
- How much unique content a site has (versus "thin" (low word count) or duplicate (including internal duplicate), low-value content)
Do you know Google's algorithm changes more than 2000 times a year? Do you have a plan to face the changes?
The main difference between local SEO and National SEO is Local SEO covers only a specific area, such as 'the best pizza restaurant in KL.' National SEO, on the other hand, is optimizing the business not only in a particular geographical location but across the entire country. For example, your website sells beauty mask that delivers to the whole of Malaysia.
On-page SEO is the practice of optimizing individual web pages such as keyword placement, content quality, schema codes, anchor text, internal linking, etc in order to rank higher and gain added relevant traffic on Google. On-page SEO practice, if done correctly, will send signals to Google telling Google what exactly your page or website is about and therefore Google can show it to relevant searchers.
Off-page SEO (aka "off-site SEO") refers to actions taken out of your website to impact your rankings within Google's result pages.
Optimizing for off-site ranking factors includes improving Google and user understanding of a site's traffic, relevance, trustworthiness, and site-authority. This can be accomplished by building valuable information and asking other relevant website/blog to use your content and give a link back to your website.
Search engines utilize backlinks as indications of the linked-to content's quality, so a site with such high value (DR/DA) backlinks will normally rank better than an equal site with fewer backlinks. But please be reminded this is not absolute; there are other factors in play during ranking.
There are three types of backlinks and how they were obtained: natural links manually built links, or self-created links.
- Natural links are links acquired without asking or doing anything to the website. For example, a cooking blogger adding a link to a post that points toward a recipe he is using from his favorite recipe website is a natural link.
- Manually built links are acquired through intentional link-building actions. For example, you ask clients to have a link to your website or asking bloggers or influencers to share your content with a link back to your website. Please be reminded relevancy is very important. For example, your site is about food, and you ask for a link from a fashion website that will be very inappropriate.
- Self-created links are created by methods such as adding backlinks in an online directory, blog comment signature, forum, or a press release with anchor text. Some self-created (web 2.0) link building tactics tend toward black hat SEO practice and are disliked by Google, so be very careful.
Be very careful about acquiring backlinks. John from fivver is offering 50 backlinks for $5; the fact is 99% of those links are from low traffic and quality, irrelevant keywords stuffed self-made blog that looks super spammy, and no human will dwell on. If links to your website appear on a lot of these kinds of sites and Google found out, you will be delisted and penalized.
Keyword research is the blueprint for your digital marketing effort. If you don't know which relevant keywords represent your business, you can't drive targeted traffic and convert sales and achieve any ROI. You'll need to know, firstly, what keywords represent your business? How relevant is the intent of the keyword to your business? Secondly, are there search volumes for these keywords? Thirdly, are those keywords over saturated, and how can you go from a different angle to solve over-saturation?