From instant food to instant likes, we are so used to getting everything immediately that we sometimes forget the benefits of having patience. And yes, there are benefits. In this article, we at The Spaceship Design will take you through some of the workings of SEO and the advantages of a long term SEO strategy.
What is SEO?
Have you ever noticed that when you search for something on the internet you get a message on the lines of ‘about 28, 40, 00, 000 results in 0.60 seconds’? That is how many websites the search engine had to go through before shortlisting & showing you the first few links. Clearly, cyber space is an extremely competitive world, and to stand-out websites turn to SEO.
SEO or Search Engine Optimization can be described as the process of making your website more readable for search engines. The better your SEO, the more chances of your website showing up on a Search Engine Results Page (SERP). So how does a search engine find you the most relevant websites from the trillions that exist?
How Does SEO Work?
Search engines use 3 main processes to find your website.
- Crawling: Here the search engines go through each line of your web page to understand better what it is about. As they do this, they collect information about your site such as page speed, tags, links, changes etc.
- Indexing: Once this information is received, the search engine adds it to their listings.
- Ranking: This is the process of displaying website links in order of relevance.
How Long Does SEO Take?
When people ask this question, they usually mean ‘how long will it take for my website to appear on the first SERP? Unfortunately, there is no definite answer to that question.
To begin your SEO process, you need to have a strategy in place. By defining your audience, planning the keywords you would like to target and understanding how your competitors perform their SEO, you begin forming an SEO strategy.
Next, you start conducting an audit of your website, and make changes to optimize it. This could involve changing your sites architecture or design, improving its mobile responsiveness and so on and so forth.
Once your site is optimized, you need to adapt your content. For a website to rank well it doesn’t just need to be readable by the search engine; it needs to be readable by a person. Search engines also look for relevant & recent websites. So whether its blog posts, articles or social media, you will need a content strategy as well.
This entire process could take a few months. Also, the changes you make take anything from a few hours to a few weeks to reflect in your rankings.
Yet your SEO is not complete. Ranking only gives your site visibility. The true test of good SEO is to convert your visitors into buyers, but to do that a number of hurdles need to be cleared.
Factors That Impact SEO Progress:
Updates to Search Engine Algorithms: Algorithms are complex mathematical programs that are used by search engines to give websites a score or a ranking. Like with any competition, there are different categories on which your website is judged, and each category has its own rules and allotted value. These are consistently changing in order to give people the most relevant results. Websites who keep pace with these changes hold their rank.
Your Competitors SEO: Anybody with an online presence should be doing SEO, which means that your competitors, direct or indirect will be doing it as well. Honestly, it’s like entering an endurance race that you don’t want to drop out off. If you don’t keep your SEO up-to-date, you can rest assured someone else will take your spot.
The Way We Search: Language is ever-evolving and so is technology. A few years ago, the only way to search the internet was by typing. Now with voice search becoming more refined, people have started conversing with search engines rather than just asking questions. So you may have begun your SEO with one set of keywords, but those may no longer be relevant.
Penalties: People try cheating search engines using what are called black-hat techniques. These are illegal and attract penalties. In all probability, you are not using these. However, misunderstandings are common. For example, if there’s been a recent algorithm update and your site hasn’t made changes, the search engine may think you are trying to use black-hat techniques. The good news these misunderstandings can easily be clarified.
Modifying Your SEO: In the short-run any changes to your website can cause your rankings to fluctuate. Even suddenly stopping or starting a paid ad campaign can affect your position. There is only cause for concern if your ranking stays low for over a few weeks.
As you can see, if you wish to do good SEO you should be prepared to go all-in. It may take a while, but in today’s competitive digital world SEO is the key to survival. We at The Spaceship Design can help you with your long-term SEO strategy. As they say, slow and steady, wins the race!