Expert Market's Director of Publishing, Amy Catlow, explains what SEO is and how it can be measured.
What is SEO?
Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO, relates to a number of methods used to make your website rank well and stand out in search engine results. Search engines, such as Google, will only show the results that they think are most relevant and valuable for a particular search term. Therefore you need to make sure that your content delivers exactly what the user is looking for when they search for a product/service/information online.
It used to be the case that SEO simply meant stuffing the keyword, or search term, into your web page as many times as possible so that search engines believed your page was relevant for that a given search term. However, search engines have grown in complexity over the past 10 years. In keeping with this growth, the world of SEO has evolved into a place where quality, useful content and brand integrity are vital for success.
One key aspect of traditional SEO involves building links to your site. If another website links to yours it is a sign of trust, Google looks for these signs when deciding on the authority of your webpages. Link building has also changed dramatically over recent years and the emphasis is now on quality over quantity. To appeal to this demand, companies need to focus on creating engaging, original content that well-respected, high-authority sites will naturally want to link to.
How to Measure SEO
There are many KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) that you can measure to ensure your SEO strategy is working. Free tools like Google Analytics enable you to quickly tell how much traffic you're generating and which sources are working best for you. Organic traffic is one of the key metrics to track, this shows how many people are visiting your site directly from searches on Google or other search engines.
Along with your organic traffic and conversions, you can measure the success of your SEO efforts by looking at your search result rankings i.e. what position you appear in the search results for specific keywords. Again using a purpose-built tool will help with monitoring this. Ideally you should aim to rank on the first page - positions 1-10 - for a number of search terms relevant to your content if you want to generate a significant amount of organic traffic to your website.
For a more in depth insight into SEO and how it can help your business grow read Behind Every Great Website There’s Great SEO.