What is SEO? A Simple Guide to Search Engine Optimization

what is seo

What is SEO? SEO is an acronym for search engine optimization. It is a technique to tweak your website for free organic traffic. For this, your pages should be ranking on the first few pages of search engines.

Another alternative is to get paid traffic from ads on Google or Bing. This is not for everybody as the competition for the position could be high.

Using SEO methods, you will prepare your website for better ranking.

At the end of reading this article, you will learn how you can prepare your website for SEO. Follow each step, and improve your websites so that you will rank better.

Here, I will teach you what is SEO, What is SEO practice, What is SEO keyword, Why SEO, What is SEO longtail, What is SEO header and meta description, what is SEO, What is SEO backlink, What is SEO Content and more.

At the end of the article, you will learn more than what is SEO. You will prepare your website to rank on top of search engines. You will be able to amass the traffic to your website.

What is SEO Keyword?

Have you ever searched for something on Google? I bet you do. Because how else you are on this page after all?

Every one does. What are the terms that you used to get here? That is what we call a keyword.

A keyword is a term that readers use to search for something they are looking for. This is why we needed to focus on keywords to create a successful website. Because the success of any page on the website is determined by two things, relevant content, and traffic.

Only if you work for both, that you will get a continuous ranking. First, relevancy is being familiar with what readers need. Someone who searched ‘how to be on the first page on google’ should get the answer on the post they click on. If not, they will bounce off the website. With this, you lose potential traffic.

Therefore, you need to find out what people are searching for in your niche and give them the exact answer. Hook them with your guide and tips. Give them materials for free. Minimize the bounce rate and increase the staying type for them.

This will allow you to stay on top of search results.

What gives you a top position on the search engine? How do you compete with top blogs that started a long time ago?

Whatever you do, you cannot mess up the basics of a useful article. You can be a great SEO person, and you even may tweak your website with top keywords.

  • Avoid overuse of keywords- This used to be a trick of many blogs some years back. The stuff as many keywords as the can and create an article that a human being cot read or understand. They only wrote for the keywords, and they succeeded.

However, following google algorithm updates, all these blogs fell into oblivion. Only articles with an appropriate level of keywords stayed on top.

  • Write Useful content. The second problem I see is many blogs out there are not useful at all. They are written only for the keyword.

Make sure that your articles solve a problem, and are not another post on the market.

  • Readability counts- Use appropriate header, subheader, tags, and metatags for every post. H2 and H3 headers increase readability and ranking.
  • Faster website load time- Slow websites lose much of their traffic.
  • Backup your website before you start. Use Updraftplus WordPress backup plugin. It is a free plugin for a basic backup. Once you installed the plugin, visit the setting under setting> updraftplus plugin. Then click the backup now button. I recommend to backup everything on your website.
What SEO is - ubersuggest

What are the types of SEO keywords?

There are three known keyword types: Generic,

1.    Generic keywords  

Generic keywords are very general, very broad, such as SEO, House, Real-estate. These are what comes to mind when readers search what they are looking for.

Generic keywords have a lot of traffic. But ranking for these is nearly improbable. Top websites and companies are paying millions to stay on top of these keywords.

Not only that, but generic keywords also don’t have a specific problem in them. The word ‘TV’ does not say anything.

So, I advise you to stay away from these, especially at the beginning.

2.    Branded keywords

These are keywords associated with brands. Instead of just ‘TV’, ‘LG TV’ or ‘apple Computer’. These keywords are also hard to rank for as these belong to a certain brand.

For every search for branded keywords, the brands rank on top.

3.    Longtail keywords

Longtail keywords are keywords with more than 3 words in them and are more explanatory. Study shows that two-thirds of all searches are long-tail keywords.

Long-tail keywords may have a lower search volume but are less competitive. ‘The cheapest apple Laptop’ is a good example.

With this in mind, here I will show you how you can rank your website in search engines.

How to Use a Longtail Keyword Against Broad Keywords?

You probably have heard a lot about a longtail keyword. It was a new topic some years back. And now many bloggers and marketers are using the concept to rank in a very competitive niche.

A longtail keyword is a search term with more than 3 words that users use to search. A one-word keyword is called a broad keyword. Broad keywords are often mentioned in search engines. However, broad keywords have a challenge.

First, even though these keywords are mentioned in search engines often, it does not mean the reader is looking for the keywords. For example, you may have searched a keyword ‘travel’ which is a broad keyword.

Let’s assume a person who is looking for information on travel to Paris. That person may search ‘cheap travel to Paris’. In this search query, the word travel is mentioned but it barely has a direct association with the result needed.

Second, most broad keywords include brands and keywords that directly does not offer a solution. If a reader searches the word Nike, even if you use a keyword ‘Nike’ in your articles you may not rank well. Because the Nike website should rank on top for these keywords.

Not only that the word health may have a lot of searches, but surely, the majority of people who search in such a niche are not looking to become a health professional. Instead, they use keywords such as ‘acne’, or ‘diabetes’.

Even these use the keywords acne and diabetes, are not looking to learn about the disease. Therefore, they surely will search ‘how to get rid of child acne’ or ‘I am having a headache in the morning.’

Why do you need a longtail keyword?

Well, many short keywords are already very competitive. Trying to rank for a single keyword such as health and wedding and coffee is almost impossible for new bloggers. Thousands of already established blogs out there are working hard to get a position for the words.

Second, readers don’t search for short keywords anymore. We search in question format or with as many details as possible. For example, a tourist going to Paris may search ‘best places to stay in Paris’ or ‘a must watch place for the first time traveler to Paris’

Third, long-tail keywords also get better-unrelated traffic. Since the keyword has more than one keyword, it is possible to get unrelated traffic that contains a single word in your keyword. The bounce rate will be higher in this case but you still get traffic. If you do good, you may still keep the traffic.

Where to Start to Find a Longtail Keyword?

Now you understand why you need longtail keywords.

If you don’t apply it to your blog, there is no use to it. SO, where should you start?  I get this inspiration from Neil Patel who often writes about stealing competitor’s keywords.

Let’s go directly on how to start with finding a good longtail keyword.

First, you need to find what is going on in your niche. Who are the medium performers in that niche?

This is a basic step.

List the blogs that are not relatively known blogs that have Alexa rank or similar web global ranks below 10k. Because the better the rank, the harder to compete.

The enter these websites into keyword tools ubersuggest and keyword planner. Both are free keyword tools.

Then download the keywords in to excel.

Open the excel and let’s select appropriate keywords. We need what is SEO difficulty of less than 30. According to ubersuggest any keyword with SEO difficulty less than 30 is easier to rank.  

Then avoid keywords that have search volume less than 500 depending on how many keywords you have in your list. If you have more keywords, then remove keywords that have a volume of less than 1000.

The remaining keywords with a monthly volume above 500 and SEO difficulty less than 30 are a good keyword to write your articles. With this, you increase your traffic.

Next, on ubersuggest look up the ranking websites on a given keyword, and see what they wrote. It is possible that the blog page results are not very professional or may not solve the expected problem.

Then write your article much better and much useful than the competition. IT is easier to compete with the blog posts that have a position below 10.

The best way to find more topics to write on is to look for related searches and Google autosuggest. Use the keywords you already found from the above research and put them into google.

Google will give you long-tail keywords from autosuggest and related searches. You can even use these keywords as subheaders to your post.

ubersuggest keyword

You can also use tools such as asking the public to find ling tail keywords.

#What is SEO- longtail keywords

How to Get Backlinks to Your Websites?

Backlinks have an impact on your ranking in search engines. Backlinks show your website’s authority.

What matters most is the quality of the website that you get a backlink from. Having many backlinks does not necessarily mean that you have a better ranking opportunity.

20 backlinks from the mediocre website are not better than 5 backlinks from a high-quality website. On the other hand, more websites link to you the better you will rank.

Don’t build backlinks unnaturally. These means don’t buy backlinks from these websites that promise you thousands of backlinks in a month or less. I am not saying they don’t increase your backlink count, but these backlinks are not useful. These will affect your ranking negatively.

If you want to see a fast change in your ranking, try getting backlinks from already established websites and trusted websites. These include news websites and government websites and old websites.

It seems hard to get backlinks from such websites. And it is. The easiest way to get a backlink from such websites is to build a brand and create an even that these websites are interested in.

If you create the top 100 lists of websites, or government offices or anything that other websites could be proud of to share, then you will get more backlinks. If you create an even that news websites could share from your websites, surely you will get many backlinks.  

Besides this only follow links work in your favor. Backlinks from social websites and forums are nofollow links. These use the no-follow links to discourage spams.

#What is SEO- backlinks

How to Create Headers and Meta Descriptions?

A good header is a way to good traffic to a post. Readers first read your header before even reading your post. Not only that H2 and H3 tags also help readers map out the entire article and find what they are looking for easily.

The meta description is another entrée to your post. It is a description placed with the header in search engines. A relevant description minimizes a bounce rate from your website.

In WordPress, you create Headers both for SEO and for the post. Use a simple short header that contains your keyword. In the SEO header (inside the SEO plugins) follow the guidelines of the plugins to create a better header.

Create H2 and H3 tags using WordPress.

Meta descriptions are also added from SEO plugins. Meta descriptions should explain what your posts are about and should include the keyword.

How to Create a Site Map for Your Website?

Create a sitemap using plugins such as Yoast SEO and Rankmath.  These plugins will automatically create a site map for your website. In YoastSEO, for example, go to SEO>General then click the features tab. Make sure XML sitemaps are on.

Then, you need to add your site map to google search console. A search console is a central place for your websites.

In google search console, select domain as a property type. Enter your domain and click next. Then verify your domain ownership using a text provided into DNS with your domain name provider. If you are using Cloudflare, then you can paste the text under the DNS section in Cloudflare.

If you choose URL prefix, you will get various options to verify your ownership.

Next, find your sitemap under yourdomainname.com/sitemap.xml or yourdomainname.com/sitemap_index.xml.

Return to your google search console dashboard, choose your property> index> sitemaps. Paste your sitemap URL here. That is it. Google will do the rest. If there any errors google will notify you as well.

#What is SEO- Header and meta

Should My Domain Contain Keywords?

To answer this question, we need to understand EMD and PMD. The two words simply represent Exact march domains and partially match domains. The EMD has an exact keyword on what the website is about. Coffee dot com is an example of EMD.

The PMD has a suggestion of what the website is about without using exact keywords.

The third is brandable type domains that have no direct connection with the website’s niche. This are domains such as google dot com.

So, which one is the best option?

EMD has an advantage because they say what the website is about. Cars dot com for example is exactly about cars, not planes.

Brandable type domains need more marketing work because no one knows what they are about.

Putting their cons and pros aside, some research shows that PMDs rank better than EMDs. Even non-related keywords may rank much higher.

What truly matters is the content. People are there for the content, not the domain. A good domain without the content is useless.

Then, follow a good domain name practice and make sure you have valuable content as well.

Therefore, your domain name should be short, easy to remember. It should also avoid numbers and symbols.

  1. Should I Use SSL Certificates on My Domain to Rank?

Google trusts SSL domains more than non-SSL domains. This means google prefers Https and not Http. The SSL certificate shows a secured website, and google values security. There is no question that websites with SSL certificates rank better. Especially, this is necessary for eCommerce websites and websites with money transactions.

Where Can I Get an SSL Certificate?

You will get free SSL from cloudflare. The free version is enough to tell google that you have secured a website.

What URL Structure Should I Use in My Domain?

The keywords in your post should be seen in your URL as well. Therefore, never use domains such as as….

Rather use ‘yourdomianname.com/keyword.

To change your URL structure in WordPress, go to Settings > permalink. And change your permalink structure to post name. That is, it!

#What is SEO- URL Structure

What type of content ranks?

Content is related to user experience. The better your post explains the concept, the better it ranks. This means whether you follow a lot of images with few text articles or a lot of text articles with an appropriate number of backlinks perform better.

Create a pillar type posts that keep users engaged.

#What is SEO- Content

gtmetrix site speed

Site Speed and Ranking

Website speed is a basic factor for ranking in search engines. A fast website gets more traffic and a slow website loses traffic. A piece of information is not scarce. You will get blog posts with similar content.

Then, why would readers wait for your slow website to load? They will surely jump to the next link. If your website is fast loading, then you will get more staying traffic.

Unfortunately, almost half of the readers leave websites that take 3 seconds or more to load. Even the ones who stay are less likely to purchase.

Top ranking blogs have as much as a single second faster.

How Fast Is My Website?

Checking website speed is easy. Go to google website speed and GT matrix. Enter your domain and hit search.

You will get the good and the bad part of your website. And see each problem and solve them individually. Search your speed again and check for improvement.

I will advise you not to go for perfection either.

How to Reduce Website Loading Time?

In WordPress, reducing website loading time is easy.

  1. Use plugins. The basic plugins that will reduce website load time are:
  2. Use CDN- use Cloudflare CDN
launch_blue-host

What Is the Best Hosting for Website Speed?

Hosting is a determining factor for page speed. And page speed brings more traffic. And more traffic means more ranking.

Then which hosting should you use? And what are the criteria to choose from the pool?

Well, there are hundreds of hosting services in the world. And each of these has its pros and cons. But a busy blogger who has no interest in research, I recommend Bluehost.

Why Bluehost?

When you choose to host, consider these three basic criteria.

  1. Uptime. Some servers go out for a few minutes or hours either for upgrading or maintenance. We don’t want that. We want at least 99.9 percent uptime.
  2. Space and bandwidth. Some hosts give you unlimited space which means you can store as much data as you can. But the bandwidth is very low. Bandwidth determines possible traffic at a time that the server can handle. If your traffic increases rapidly, your site might crash.
  3. Support. You may not need this especially if you are not a beginner. But surely you cannot solve every problem by yourself. You need someone to respond on the server-side for some of the problems you encounter.
  4. Affordable and fair price. Some hosts are good at what they do. But these can be very expensive.

Now you will see why I suggest Bluehost for beginners and even for advanced bloggers.

Signup on bluehost, and use the discount for your first registration. Go for a basic account to start with. The rest is easy.

How to Minimize Your Image Size for Website Speed?

WordPress makes it easy to compress your images. If you don’t have a photoshop skill, the alternative is to use compression plugins.

The best on the market are Smush, Shortpixel, tinypNG, and EWWW image optimizer.

Whichever plugin you choose, create bulk optimization first. You can do this by going to media> bulk optimization. check if the website is working correctly by removing caches on your website. And I don’t recommend you to delete the original images no matter how much space they take.

Lazy load is another method to minimize image load time. By loading images in the background, you will speed up the image load on the screen.

You necessarily don’t have to use separate lazy load plugin, because most of the cache plugins have his feature in them. If you cannot find a lazy load feature in your cache or other plugins then use a3 lazyload or another alternative plugin.

How to minimize server response time?

You can minimize server response time by using different plugins. Speed booster pack plugin is a good option.

Use cloudflare. You will usually find it in your hosting dashboard. Activate and leave it.

Use cache plugins such as WP total cache, LiteSpeed cache, WP fastest cache are good examples.

#What is SEO- speed

Finally, What is SEO?

What is SEO? SEO is the best way to get continuous organic traffic. To rank on top of search engines, you need to make your blog easy to access, easy to load, and very useful.

We have answered what is SEO, What is SEO practice, What is SEO keyword, Why SEO, What is SEO longtail, What is SEO header and meta description, what is SEO, What is SEO backlink, What is SEO Content and what is seo site speed and more.

If you haven’t got answer to any of these questions, comment or write to us. We will reply soon.

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