Some Notes. The Goal of Search . of search engine optimization and Internet marketing. a free PDF checklist of all the SEO tools I use. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) in is a technical, analytical and .. raters guidelines (official PDF), but we have been told by Google it is not, per say, In my notes about Google Penguin, I list the original, somewhat. SEO Guide. Comprehensive SEO Guide & Tutorial for Beginners. This SEO guide is designed for those who are new to the world of search engine optimization.
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Search engine optimization (SEO) refers to techniques that help your website rank higher in organic (or. “natural”) search results, thus making your website more. Introduction to Search Engine Optimization. (SEO). Improving the visibility of our website in search engines' organic search results. In this comprehensive SEO tutorial for beginners, I will cover the essential fundamentals of Search Engine Optimization. This tutorial is divided.
Naturally, how much text you need to write, how much you need to work into it, and where you ultimately rank, is going to depend on the domain reputation of the site you are publishing the article on. SEOs have understood user search intent to fall broadly into the following categories and there is an excellent post on Moz about this. When it comes to rating user satisfaction , there are a few theories doing the rounds at the moment that I think are sensible. Google could be tracking user satisfaction by proxy.
A user clicks a result and bounces back to the SERP, pogo-sticking between other results until a long click is observed. Google has this information if it wants to use it as a proxy for query satisfaction.
For more on this, I recommend this article on the time to long click. Once you have the content, you need to think about supplementary content and secondary links that help users on their journey of discovery. A website that does not link out to ANY other website could be interpreted accurately to be at least, self-serving. For more on primary main content optimisation see:: For me, a perfect title tag in Google is dependant on a number of factors and I will lay down a couple below but I have since expanded page title advice on another page link below ;.
I think title tags, like everything else, should probably be as simple as possible, with the keyword once and perhaps a related term if possible. If you are relying on meta-keyword optimisation to rank for terms, your dead in the water. What about other search engines that use them?
Hang on while I submit my site to those 75, engines first [sarcasm! Yes, ten years ago early search engines liked looking at your meta-keywords. Forget about meta-keyword tags — they are a pointless waste of time and bandwidth.
So you have a new site. Sometimes competitors might use the information in your keywords to determine what you are trying to rank for, too…. Forget whether or not to put your keyword in it, make it relevant to a searcher and write it for humans, not search engines. If you want to have this word meta description which accurately describes the page you have optimised for one or two keyword phrases when people use Google to search, make sure the keyword is in there.
Google looks at the description but it probably does not use the description tag to rank pages in a very noticeable way.
Sometimes, I will ask a question with my titles, and answer it in the description, sometimes I will just give a hint. That is a lot more difficult in as search snippets change depending on what Google wants to emphasise to its users. Sometimes I think if your titles are spammy, your keywords are spammy, and your meta description is spammy, Google might stop right there — even they probably will want to save bandwidth at some time.
So, the meta description tag is important in Google, Yahoo and Bing and every other engine listing — very important to get it right. Googles says you can programmatically auto-generate unique meta descriptions based on the content of the page. No real additional work is required to generate something of this quality: I think it is very important to listen when Google tells you to do something in a very specific way, and Google does give clear advice in this area.
By default, Googlebot will index a page and follow links to it. At a page level — it is a powerful way to control if your pages are returned in search results pages. I have never experienced any problems using CSS to control the appearance of the heading tags making them larger or smaller.
How many words in the H1 Tag? As many as I think is sensible — as short and snappy as possible usually. As always be sure to make your heading tags highly relevant to the content on that page and not too spammy, either.
Use ALT tags or rather, ALT Attributes for descriptive text that helps visitors — and keep them unique where possible, like you do with your titles and meta descriptions. The title attribute should contain information about what will happen when you click on the image.
From my tests, no. From observing how my test page ranks — Google is ignoring keywords in the acronym tag. You do not need clean URLs in site architecture for Google to spider a site successfully confirmed by Google in , although I do use clean URLs as a default these days, and have done so for years. However — there it is demonstrable benefit to having keywords in URLs.
The thinking is that you might get a boost in Google SERPs if your URLs are clean — because you are using keywords in the actual page name instead of a parameter or session ID number which Google often struggles with. I optimise as if they do, and when asked about keywords in urls Google did reply:. I believe that is a very small ranking factor. Then it is fair to say you do get a boost because keywords are in the actual anchor text link to your site, and I believe this is the case, but again, that depends on the quality of the page linking to your site.
That is, if Google trusts it and it passes Pagerank! Sometimes I will remove the stop-words from a URL and leave the important keywords as the page title because a lot of forums garble a URL to shorten it.
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Most forums will be nofollowed in , to be fair, but some old habits die-hard. It should be remembered it is thought although Googlebot can crawl sites with dynamic URLs; it is assumed by many webmasters there is a greater risk that it will give up if the URLs are deemed not important and contain multiple variables and session IDs theory.
As standard , I use clean URLs where possible on new sites these days, and try to keep the URLs as simple as possible and do not obsess about it. Having a keyword in your URL might be the difference between your site ranking and not — potentially useful to take advantage of long tail search queries.
I prefer absolute URLs. Google will crawl either if the local setup is correctly developed. This is entirely going to a choice for your developers. Some developers on very large sites will always prefer relative URLS. I have not been able to decide if there is any real benefit in terms of ranking boost to using either.
I used to prefer files like. Google treats some subfolders….. Personally, as an SEO, I prefer subdirectories rather than subdomains if given the choice, unless it really makes sense to house particular content on a subdomain, rather than the main site as in the examples John mentions. I thought that was a temporary solution. If you have the choice, I would choose to house content on a subfolder on the main domain.
Recent research would still indicate this is the best way to go:. I prefer PHP these days even with flat documents as it is easier to add server side code to that document if I want to add some sort of function to the site. It is important that what Google Googlebot sees is exactly what a visitor would see if they visit your site.
Blocking Google can sometimes result in a real ranking problem for websites.
If Google has problems accessing particular parts of your website, it will tell you in Search Console. If you are a website designer, you might want to test your web design and see how it looks in different versions of Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer. Does Google rank a page higher because of valid code? I love creating accessible websites but they are a bit of a pain to manage when you have multiple authors or developers on a site. If your site is so badly designed with a lot of invalid code even Google and browsers cannot read it, then you have a problem.
Where possible, if commissioning a new website, demand, at least, minimum web accessibility compliance on a site there are three levels of priority to meet , and aim for valid HTML and CSS.
It is one form of optimisation Google will not penalise you for. I link to relevant internal pages in my site when necessary. I silo any relevance or trust mainly via links in text content and secondary menu systems and between pages that are relevant in context to one another. I do not obsess about site architecture as much as I used to…. This is normally triggered when Google is confident this is the site you are looking for, based on the search terms you used.
Sitelinks are usually reserved for navigational queries with a heavy brand bias, a brand name or a company name, for instance, or the website address. Google likes to seem to mix this up a lot, perhaps to offer some variety, and probably to obfuscate results to minimise or discourage manipulation.
Sometimes it returns pages that leave me scratching my head as to why Google selected a particular page appears. Sitelinks are not something can be switched on or off, although you can control to some degree the pages are selected as site links.
This works for me, it allows me to share the link equity I have with other sites while ensuring it is not at the expense of pages on my domain. Try it. Check your pages for broken links.
Seriously, broken links are a waste of link power and could hurt your site, drastically in some cases. Google is a link-based search engine — if your links are broken and your site is chock full of s you might not be at the races. For example and I am talking internally here — if you took a page and I placed two links on it, both going to the same page? OK — hardly scientific, but you should get the idea. Or will it read the anchor text of both links, and give my page the benefit of the text in both links especially if the anchor text is different in both links?
Will Google ignore the second link? What is interesting to me is that knowing this leaves you with a question. If your navigation array has your main pages linked to in it, perhaps your links in content are being ignored, or at least, not valued. I think links in body text are invaluable. Does that mean placing the navigation below the copy to get a wide and varied internal anchor text to a page? Also, as John Mueller points out, Google picks the best option to show users depending on who they are and where they are.
So sometimes, your duplicate content will appear to users where relevant. This type of copying makes it difficult to find the exact matching original source. These types of changes are deliberately done to make it difficult to find the original source of the content. How do you get two listings from the same website in the top ten results in Google instead of one in normal view with 10 results.
Generally speaking, this means you have at least two pages with enough link equity to reach the top ten results — two pages very relevant to the search term. You can achieve this with relevant pages, good internal structure and of course links from other websites. Some SERPs feature sites with more than two results from the same site.
It is incredibly important in to create useful and proper pages. This will help prevent Google recording lots of autogenerated thin pages on your site both a security risk and a rankings risk. I will highlight a poor page in my audits and actually programmatically look for signs of this issue when I scan a site.
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Use language that is friendly and inviting. Make sure your page uses the same look and feel including navigation as the rest of your site. Think about providing a way for users to report a broken link. In order to prevent pages from being indexed by Google and other search engines, make sure that your webserver returns an actual HTTP status code when a missing page is requested.
A good page and proper setup prevents a lot of this from happening in the first place. Pages may lack MC for various reasons. Sometimes, the content is no longer available and the page displays an error message with this information. This is normal, and those individual non-functioning or broken pages on an otherwise maintained site should be rated Low quality. This is true even if other pages on the website are overall High or Highest quality.
The issue here is that Google introduces a lot of noise into that Crawl Errors report to make it unwieldy and not very user-friendly. A lot of broken links Google tells you about can often be totally irrelevant and legacy issues. Google could make it instantly more valuable by telling us which s are linked to from only external websites.
I also prefer to use Analytics to look for broken backlinks on a site with some history of migrations, for instance. John has clarified some of this before, although he is talking specifically I think about errors found by Google in Search Console formerly Google Webmaster Tools:. If you are making websites and want them to rank, the and Quality Raters Guidelines document is a great guide for Webmasters to avoid low-quality ratings and potentially avoid punishment algorithms.
You can use redirects to redirect pages, sub-folders or even entire websites and preserve Google rankings that the old page, sub-folder or websites enjoyed. This is the best way to ensure that users and search engines are directed to the correct page. Redirecting multiple old pages to one new page works too if the information is there on the new page that ranked the old page. Pages should be thematically connected if you want the redirects to have a SEO benefit.
My general rule of thumb is to make sure the information and keywords on the old page are featured prominently in the text of the new page — stay on the safe side. You need to keep these redirects in place for instance on a linux apache server, in your htaccess file forever. John Mueller, Google. If you need a page to redirect old URLs to, consider your sitemap or contact page. As long as the intention is to serve users and create content that is satisfying and more up-to-date — Google is OK with this.
As a result, that URL may be crawled and its content indexed. However, Google will also treat certain mismatched or incorrect redirects as soft type pages, too. And this is a REAL problem in , and a marked change from the way Google worked say ten years ago. It essentially means that Google is not going to honour your redirect instruction and that means you are at risk of knobbling any positive signals you are attempting to transfer through a redirect.
Sometimes it is useful to direct visitors from a usability point of view, but sometimes that usability issue will impact SEO benefits from old assets. If I want to boost that pages relevance for that KEYWORD at the center of any redirects, I will ensure the new page content is updated and expanded upon if it is of genuine interest to a user. Links may point to your site using both the www and non-www versions of the URL for instance, http: The preferred domain is the version that you want used for your site in the search results.
Simply put, https: It keeps it simple when optimising for Google. If you want to know more, see how to use canonical tags properly. Other pages, every couple of months. Again — best practice.
Google has said very recently XML and RSS are still a very useful discovery method for them to pick out recently updated content on your site. Remember — Google needs links to find all the pages on your site, and links spread Pagerank, that help pages rank — so an XML sitemap is never a substitute for a great website architecture.
Google wants evaluators to find out who owns the website and who is responsible for the content on it. The above information does not need to feature on every page, more on a clearly accessible page. If the business is a member of a trade or professional association, membership details, including any registration number, should be provided.
Consider also the Distance Selling Regulations which contain other information requirements for online businesses that sell to consumers B2C, as opposed to B2B, sales. While you are editing your footer — ensure your copyright notice is dynamic and will change year to year — automatically. This little bit of code will display the current year.
You can take your information you have from above and transform it with Schema. I got yellow stars in Google within a few days of adding the code to my website template — directly linking my site to information Google already has about my business.
Flash is a propriety plug-in created by Macromedia to infuse albeit fantastically rich media for your websites. The W3C advises you avoid the use of such proprietary technology to construct an entire site. We will remove Flash completely from Chrome toward the end of Flash, in the hands of an inexperienced designer, can cause all types of problems at the moment, especially with:.
Note that Google sometimes highlights if your site is not mobile friendly on some devices. And on the subject of mobile-friendly websites — note that Google has alerted the webmaster community that mobile friendliness will be a search engine ranking factor in This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results.
First — for I have witnessed VERY slow websites of 10 seconds and more negatively impacted in Google, and second, from statements made by Googlers:. Google might crawl your site slower if you have a slow site.
My latest research would indicate as fast as possible. Easier said than done. In the video above you hear from at least one spam fighter that would confirm that at least some people are employed at Google to demote sites that fail to meet policy:. So, for the long term, on primary sites, once you have cleaned all infractions up, the aim is to satisfy users by:.
It still leaves out some of the more complicated technical recommendations for larger sites. I usually find it useful to keep an eye on what Google tells you to avoid in such documents, which are:. Users dislike clicking a search engine result only to land on another search result page on your site. Of course, you combine the above together with the technical recommendations in Google guidelines for webmasters.
On Page SEO is not as simple as a checklist any more of keyword here, keyword there. Now, consultants need to be page-centric abstract, I know , instead of just keyword centric when optimising a web page for Google. One filter may be kicking in keeping a page down in the SERPs while another filter is pushing another page up.
You might have poor content but excellent incoming links, or vice versa. You might have very good content, but a very poor technical organisation of it.
The key to a successful campaign, I think, is persuading Google that your page is most relevant to any given search query. Next time you are developing a page, consider what looks spammy to you is probably spammy to Google. Ask yourself which pages on your site are really necessary.
SEO Tutorial For Beginners in 2019
Which links are necessary? Which pages on the site are emphasised in the site architecture? Which pages would you ignore?
You can help a site along in any number of ways including making sure your page titles and meta tags are unique but be careful. There are no hard and fast rules to long-term ranking success, other than developing quality websites with quality content and quality links pointing to it. The aim is to build a satisfying website and build real authority! Make mistakes and learn from them by observation. If they were, I would be a black hat full time. So would everybody else trying to rank in Google.
The majority of small to medium businesses do not need advanced strategies because their direct competition has not employed these tactics either. This site was a couple of years old, a clean record in Google, and a couple of organic links already from trusted sites.
This domain had the authority and capability to rank for some valuable terms, and all we had to do was to make a few changes on the site, improve the depth and focus of website content, monitor keyword performance and tweak page titles.
A lot of businesses can get more converting visitors from Google simply by following basic principles and best practices:. I was very curious about the science of optimisation I studied what I could but it left me a little unsatisfied. Misinformation is an obvious one. Even if you think a theory holds water on some level.
I try to update old posts with new information if I think the page is only valuable with accurate data. One that is constantly in change.
Professional SEO is more a collection of skills, methods and techniques. It is more a way of doing things, than a one-size-fits-all magic trick. Good text, simple navigation structure, quality links. To be relevant and reputable takes time, effort and luck, just like anything else in the real world, and that is the way Google want it. It takes time to generate the data needed to begin to formulate a campaign, and time to deploy that campaign.
Google wants to return quality pages in its organic listings, and it takes time to build this quality and for that quality to be recognised. It takes time too to balance your content, generate quality backlinks and manage your disavowed links.
Google knows how valuable organic traffic is — and they want webmasters investing a LOT of effort in ranking pages. Web optimisation is a marketing channel just like any other and there are no guarantees of success in any, for what should be obvious reasons. There are no guarantees in Google Adwords either, except that costs to compete will go up, of course. There are no guarantees — despite claims from some companies.
What you make from this investment is dependent on many things, not least, how suited your website is to convert visitors into sales. It depends entirely on the quality of the site in question and the level and quality of the competition, but smaller businesses should probably look to own their niche, even if limited to their location, at first.
Note; these rules for inclusion can and do change. The Google Webmaster Channel is also a useful resource for beginners to subscribe to. I have also published my SEO guide as a free Ebook. I am based in the UK and most of my time is spent looking at Google. Google is BIG — with many different country-specific search engines with wildly different results in some instances. I do all my testing on Google. I write and publish to my blog to keep track of thoughts and get feedback from industry and peers.
As a result, of this strategy, I get about K visitors a month from Google. There are no warranties with this guide or any information you find on my site — it is a free pdf. Alternatively, sign up for my email newsletter.
The author does not vouch for third party sites or any third party service. Visit third party sites at your own risk. I am not directly partnered with Google or any other third party.
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SEO copywriting is a bit of a dirty word — but the text on a page still requires optimised, using familiar methods, albeit published in a markedly different way than we, as SEO, used to get away with.
In the video above you hear from at least one spam fighter that would confirm that at least some people are employed at Google to demote sites that fail to meet policy:. These doorway campaigns manifest themselves as pages on a site, as a number of domains, or a combination thereof. What happens in this scenario?
Take unnatural links out of the equation which have a history of trumping most other signals and you are left with page level, site level and off-site signals. Think about the words that a user might search for to find a piece of your content.