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SEO Guide for Beginners (2024).

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Are you new to SEO (search engine optimization) and don’t know where to start? Don’t worry; you can skyrocket your rankings with simple SEO tricks. With these basic fundamental SEO strategies for beginners, we’ve got you covered.

What are the 4 Basic Steps for SEO?

In order to rank your site higher in search engines, you must understand the basics of SEO. Below are the four necessary steps for effective SEO:

  1. Do Keyword Research
  2. Optimize your website for your chosen keywords
  3. Guest blogging can be intimidating for newbies, but you can advertise your site with the right information
  4. Track your results

SEO is an ongoing activity, not a one-time event. Following these four steps can lay a solid foundation for your SEO operations and achieve sustainable success. Do you want to increase the ranking of your site in search engines? If yes, then you must be familiar with SEO.

How Search Engine Works

The first thing a beginner in SEO needs to understand is how search engines work before diving into the technical aspects of SEO.

You’ve probably used Google countless times before, and up until this point, you probably didn’t give a damn about how it works – you just wanted to get what you were looking for quickly.

Understanding how Google works will help you better understand what we hope to achieve with SEO

Now we use search engines every day. The first thing you should do if you have a question, want to know something, or want to make a purchase is to open Google and search by typing in the Google search box or using voice search.

You click on one of the top results Google searches for because you automatically think you’ll find what you’re looking for in seconds. An average of 3.3 billion users around the world take this action every day! Google needs to do a lot of upfront work to be able to respond quickly to search queries and provide reliable results.

Their procedure is divided into two main stages:

  • Crawling and Indexing
  • Ranking process (search algorithms)

Crawling and Indexing

During this process, Google compiles an index of ALL public websites on the Internet.

Think of it like a much larger phone book, with names and numbers replaced by important website features like URL, title, number of pages, content type, photos, internal links, and lots of other information that would be required (ranking process ).

To do this, Google uses various software applications known as spiders, also known as crawlers or bots, to surf the web, collect data and store it in Google’s database for later processing.

In addition to searching for new pages, search robots keep track of existing pages’ updates. Over time, Google has become incredibly efficient at this and can recognize and index relevant content almost immediately (e.g., breaking news such as an earthquake).

They monitor a network of hundreds of spiders, and a sizable database stores and processes all the data.

You don’t need to know how crawling and indexing work because they are too technical. You should be aware that Google, along with other search engines, is constantly crawling the Internet for fresh content and updates to old content.

Search Algorithms and Ranking Processes

When you enter a search term into the Google search box, the search engine should recognize what you are trying to find and try to either answer your question directly or provide you with a list of websites most likely to do so.

The search algorithms that work in the ranking process are responsible for this.

Sophisticated computer programs called search algorithms evaluate the information in the Google index and decide which websites should appear in the results for a given query and in what order.

The Google search algorithm consists of hundreds of rules, but no one knows exactly what they all mean.

Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the two people who founded Google, developed the original algorithm back in 1996. Initially, the algorithm was simple, but over time it became more and more complex. It is estimated that he considers more than 255 factors before making a choice.

Recent Updates by Google

Google recently added its artificial intelligence (AI) technology, known as RankBrain, to its search algorithm, with the result that both robots and human-supported logic now make ranking judgments. Numerous programmers have been trying for years to crack the algorithm and understand how rankings work, but Google has managed to keep this important secret.

While Google has acknowledged that some well-known factors (such as page speed, SSL, and mobile friendliness) are used in the algorithm, other factors have never been publicly disclosed or acknowledged by Google.

Other Search Engines

Despite a market share of over 60%, Google is not the only search engine. The remaining 40% of the market is occupied by other search engines, including Bing, Yandex, and Duckduckgo.

Generally speaking, any optimization adjustments you make to your website to appease the search engine giant will also improve your rankings in other search engines.

Technical SEO basics

Website Accessibility

This part is the most technical part of the SEO guide. Don’t worry – we’ll make the process easy! Technical SEO is critical because even though your content may be fantastic, it won’t rank if Google can’t find it.

Let’s check if your content is eligible for ranking

Crawling with a crawler, spider, or spider bot is a general term used when discussing the accessibility of a website. This is the method that search engines use to find your content and submit it for indexing. Simply put, the crawler follows all the links it finds before exploring the content of the pages it finds (similar to how you browse the Internet).

Robots.txt file

The Robots.txt file is used to tell crawlers to stop indexing your website or certain pages on it. It is usually located in the root folder of your website (if you have one, you can find it by typing https://yourdomain12345.com/robots.txt in your browser tab).

Sometimes errors occur that important block sites. Especially if you are moving to a new domain or CMS or when you are making significant structural changes to your website. Check the integrity of the robots.txt file.

Noindex and nofollow tags

Noindex and nofollow tags are short snippets of code that are added to your website pages and might look like this when you look at the code:

<meta name=”robots” content=”noindex, nofollow”>

If you do not want your sites to be indexed by search robots, you use the Noindex tag.

An effective illustration is when you have multiple combinations of filters for your products or services, resulting in hundreds or thousands of different pages. They may not be useful to search engines, but they lead to other important pages on your site. So it makes sense to let Google crawl them but not index them.

Sitemap

A sitemap makes it easier for spiders to understand the structure of your website and find new pages faster. A dynamic sitemap is a very useful practice if you switch to a new domain, launch a new website, make major structural changes, or have a large website with lots of fresh content. If videos or photos make up a significant portion of your website, you may also have separate sitemaps for these types of content.

Website load speed

Website loading speed is an important ranking element. Strive for the fastest loading times for your site. Several effective and free programs can evaluate your website’s loading speed and suggest improvements. We recommend using GTmetrix and the official Google tool.

Schema.org markup

Google best describes structured data: “Structured data is a standardized format for presenting page information and categorizing page content; for example, on the recipe page, what are the ingredients, cooking time and temperature, calories, and so on.”

According to Schema.org, every element on the page that needs to be identified in your code in order to be understood by various search engines (e.g., ingredients, cooking time, temperature, etc.) should be done like this.

How to track SEO success

It’s important to take the time to understand how to track and measure SEO performance before we jump into SEO. We will discuss a very high-level overview here, which is never easy.

Organic traffic

Let’s start with the most obvious. If organic traffic is growing, your efforts are paying off. This can be tracked for free at GSC. Sign up for a free Ahrefs Webmaster Tools (AWT) account if you don’t have access to GSC. Then enter your domain in Site Explorer to see the price.

Keyword rankings

Improving the rankings of your target keywords is another sign that you are on the right track. At GSC, you can track the average keyword ranking for free. You need a rank tracking tool like Ahrefs’ Rank Tracker if you want more accurate tracking.

Organic leads & sales

Obviously, orgainc leads, sales, revenue, and profits should be used as the main metrics for evaluating the effectiveness of your search engine optimization. The same question applies to any company activity: how does this activity affect your bottom line?

Setting goals or tracking e-commerce in a program like Google Analytics is the easiest solution.

Optimize Content for Google SEO

Now it’s time to focus each page of your site’s content around one keyword. This term should be a long-tail keyword if you are just starting out. The number of searches for long-tail terms is relatively low. However, they don’t compete as much. So your chances of coming first are higher.

Whether or not you use a long-term, optimizing your page for Google SEO remains the same. And with this quick SEO checklist, you can make sure your page is SEO friendly.

  • Include your main keyword in 100 first words on your site. You already know that you should probably repeatedly repeat the keyword on your website. However, it is very important to include the keyword in the first few sentences of your article at least once (ideally in the first 50-100 words).
  • In Your Title Tag. Your title tag is the most important area to include your keyword in terms of Google’s search engine optimization.
  • In Your Page URL. While not as important as your title tag, you should still use the keyword in your page URL. Also, use these on-page SEO strategies if you want to optimize your page for Google SEO fully:
  • In the H1 and H2 subheadings, use the keyword. By doing this, you are telling Google that your page is about that keyword and topic.
  • Use alt text and image filenames with keywords. Image optimization is not really critical. But it can be beneficial.
  • Add Internal Links. Google can identify, crawl, and index more pages on your site with internal links (and help them rank higher in search results). You will earn bonus points if you include keyword-rich anchor text in your internal links.
  • Use Related Keywords and Synonyms. Use multiple spellings of the target term on your page. Use alternatives like “kettlebell exercises” and “simple kettlebell movements” if your main keyword is “kettlebell training.”
  • Write an Engaging Meta Description. Organic CTR counts towards rankings, although adding keywords to your meta description is no longer required. Also, Google search engines are more likely to click on your site when they find an attractive meta description in organic search results.
  • Make Your Site Work With Mobile Devices. In other words, your website must be optimized for mobile use by Google search engines as well as search engine crawlers, also called spiders.

Link Building and Outreach

Link building is the most difficult (and important) component of any SEO plan. The simple truth is that you probably won’t rank highly without backlinks pointing to your site. It is also very important to spread the word about your work through social media and outreach.

Some of the more popular link-building strategies are:

  • Guest Post. Create articles to post on other sites with backlinks to your site. Make sure your content is relevant and not just shameless advertising because Google is pretty adept at detecting abnormal behavior. Find a website that generates traffic in your industry, make sure it’s a quality website, and sell them a concept that benefits both of you.
  • Broken links. Most websites link to other online sources; sometimes, those links don’t work. The site may have moved to a different domain without forgetting to redirect, the material has been removed, or the domain has expired. Contact the website administrator, tell them about the broken link, and provide content that could replace it if you have similar content that could serve as a good alternative. Check out Backlinko‘s guide to broken links, which also discusses building links with Wikipedia.
  • Web directories. Local businesses will particularly benefit from this. Your local SEO can benefit from being featured on popular review sites like Yelp and Tripadvisor. Make sure the directories are of excellent quality and that people are using them before posting about your business. Don’t register just to get a backlink.

Always try to link to a specific page rather than the home page, if at all possible. You’ll have a much better chance of ranking in the search results if your content has some high-quality backlinks.

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Conclusion

These SEO basics are designed to help you boost your organic search traffic, whether you’re new to SEO, building a new website, or optimizing an existing one.

Now that you understand how search engines work, you can better develop your SEO strategy and all of your digital marketing efforts. Your website needs to be search engine friendly, provide visitors with meaningful information, and exude authority and trust if you want to succeed in SEO. You must focus on all three areas; for example, having great content without any links leading to it won’t cut it. The return on your SEO efforts will be extremely unsatisfactory if you don’t work hard.

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