Search engine optimization (SEO) is constantly evolving, but it remains a crucial practice for anyone hosting a website and posting original content online. Search engines use algorithms to analyze web content and ascertain its usefulness. This is often determined by a metric known as domain authority. The more these algorithms like your content, the higher its rankings will be in search engines. Having a higher search engine ranking means your content will be easier to find, and your web traffic will increase.
Increasing your ranking is more important than ever these days, with near infinite competition on the internet compounded by the fact that most users don’t scroll past the first page of search results. While this may make things seem bleak, remember that you aren’t in direct competition with the entire internet. You just need to stand out from other sites in your topic area. Here are some basic SEO concepts you’ll need to start climbing the rankings.
Original domain and content
Many website hosting services are out there, but using these won’t do you much good on the SEO front. Search engines don’t generally seek out this content, because they are unsure of its seriousness or usefulness. Having your own domain shows a commitment to your content, and search engines will pick up on this.
You also need your site to provide original content that serves a need or provides a service that isn’t being provided elsewhere. At the very least, you should seek to provide more in-depth content than your direct competitors. Search engines are looking to provide users with the content that will be most useful for their needs. You might branch into video guides, developing tools or programs, or hosting podcasts on topics relevant to your user base. The better rapport you can build with your users and the more you can provide unique solutions for them, the more likely search engines are to suggest your content to others.
If you’re trying to host and grow a website, you should know the importance of keywords. These are basically words and phrases designed to catch the attention of search engines, and you should be working them into your content whenever possible.
You’ll typically aim for keywords that are general enough that a large number of people could search for them but specific enough that it relates to your site’s focus. This sounds challenging because it is. Even if you have a general information site, you have to remember that no one covers everything. Try to determine what the most important topics on your site are, and create keywords based on that. Incorporate them into your titles, early on in each piece of content, in the URLs, and even in your metadata when possible.
Link building has always been one of the most basic SEO practices, and it’s still going strong. To increase both your web traffic and your domain authority, you’ll want to link to high authority sites in your content and have others link back to your own. You may be able to reach mutually beneficial arrangements with others in your niche if you ask them to link to your content in exchange for linking to theirs. This approach has a risk of coming off desperate if handled poorly, however.
You might also consider posting content on other sites as a guest. This will get your name and content appearing in other sources, thus generating publicity. You could also hire a link building service. Such services may be able to help grow your site substantially in a few short months.
Once you understand the basic concepts, you can begin optimizing your site for different devices or trying to take advantage of evolving search trends. SEO may sound intimidating at first, but with a little knowledge and effort, you can begin putting together a good campaign faster than you may think.