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Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Rocket your sales with search engine optimisation, website audits and ongoing strategies to help your website be found online.

understanding seo

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What is Search Engine Optimisation?

Put simply, SEO is a series of processes and optimisation that can be actioned on your site to help search engines understand the content, services and value of your business.

The purpose of optimising your website for search engines is so that you gain visibility to your target audience. Your website needs to be on the first page of the search results for users who are looking for the products or services you offer.

With more than 500,000 websites being created every single day you are left in a crowded digital space, fighting for the attention of your target audience.

This has left Search Engine Optimisation as a vital service that you need if you want to stand out from the crowd. It’s no longer a “nice to have”, it’s a “must have”, to ensure that you are visible and can bring visitors to your website from search engines.

Understanding the Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) process

Search engine optimisation (SEO) is a process because it cannot be done all at once. There are many factors that come into play when ranking a website in the top spots for search engines. It takes a lot of time and effort to get a website to the first page of Google and other search engines. Our goal is to inform you of the different parts of the SEO process and how long they take, so you will know what to expect during the SEO process.

Our tested and proven SEO process employ these basic  steps to achieve high page rankings: 

1) Initial Site Analysis

2) Keyword Research

3) On-Site optimisation

4) Off-Site optimisation

5) Continuous Testing & Conversion Tracking

6) Rinse and Repeat

Step 1: Initial Site Analysis and Step 2: Keyword Research

In the Initial Site Analysis step we learn about your website, what your goals are for SEO, and determine the best keywords to use for your campaign through keyword research. We have discovered that finding high traffic, low competition keywords generates the best return on investment.

During this step we will request you provide us of a list of approximately 25 keywords / key phrases that you believe people would search for to find your website. Based on this list we will perform keyword research to determine if searchers are using the keywords you suggested or any similar variations. We will report our findings to you and ask for you to select a final list of keywords based on your SEO package. We also check for other issues with ranking factors on your website, like duplicate content, internal links, anchor texts and check that the site has a good user experience and is fully mobile friendly.

Depending on the package you select we also review your website content and conversion techniques. We can also look at your social media accounts and how to make them work for you as part of your seo strategy and how to utilise these to increase traffic to your site. Based on what we find we may make suggestions for improving visitor conversion if your website does not already have a powerful call-to-action. 

Some common suggestions are:

  • Declutter the homepage
  • Make the newsletter sign-up box more visible
  • Promote a special
  • Moving the call to action above the fold (to prevent scrolling)
  • Add more high quality content 

Step 1 and 2 can take anywhere from 1 to 2 weeks depending on the package selected. Now that these steps are done we can move forward with on and off-site optimisation.

Step 3: On-Site Optimisation

The On-Site Optimisation step is a one-time process that prepares your web pages for search engines and search traffic. This step is important as its purpose is to make sure your website is set-up properly for search engines and how search engines work.

There are several on-site optimisation techniques that are used to prepare your web pages for search engines. Some of the techniques we may use include (but are not limited to): setting up a Google Analytics account, submitted an XML sitemap, and editing various meta tags.

Google Analytics Set-Up

Google Analytics provides you with statistics on how search visitors find your website and how they use it. This information helps us see the benefits of SEO and will help you determine how your website can be improved.

Statistics include but are not limited to:

  • How many people visited site
  • How much time did they spend on site
  • Did they find site from Google or other sources
  • What pages did they visit?

 

Google Webmaster Tools Set-Up

Google Analytics provides you with statistics on how search visitors find your website and how they use it. This information helps us see the benefits of SEO and will help you determine how your website can be improved.

Statistics include but are not limited to:

  • How many people visited site
  • How much time did they spend on site
  • Did they find site from Google or other sources
  • What pages did they visit?

 

XML Sitemap Creation & Submission

An XML Sitemap is what search engines use to read your website. This helps them read your website navigation. 

All accounts are created in the customer name and you will be given the log-in  information.  Having the accounts in your name ensures you have full control of the accounts. 

Throughout the SEO process we will continue to monitor both the Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools accounts. 

Now that the accounts have been created we can proceed with the on-page optimisation:

Meta Tag and title tag optimisation

Meta tags provide search engines with information about your website. 

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Questions to ask an SEO Consultant

Page Titles

Page titles provide information to both search engines and site visitors about what information can be found on the page.

H1 and H2 Tag optimisation

Header tags (H1 and H2 tags) are used typically for the header text at the top of pages or above new paragraphs. Keywords found within these tags can help provide search engines with information about your webpage.

On-Site optimisation takes approximately 2-3 weeks to complete. Once this process is complete it does not need to be redone unless new keywords are selected.

Step 4: Off-Site optimisation

Off-Site optimisation is an ongoing process and requires continuous work.  It is important to continue with search engine optimisation efforts once your website is ranked for two reasons: 

  • To stay ahead of your competitors who are continually trying to get first page rankings and 
  • To keep up with search engines as they continually change their algorithms for how they rank websites.

There are several off-site optimisation techniques that are used on an ongoing basis to achieve top search engine rankings.  Here we again use our tested and proven seo strategies to achieve high rankings for your website.

SEO Reports

We not only work hard to rank your website but to keep you informed of what we are doing and the status of our SEO efforts. In order to do keep you up-to-date you will be provided with a written report at the beginning of each month to inform you of the success achieved in the previous month. This report includes your keyword ranking positions, accomplishments that have been achieved, traffic numbers and sources as well as a plan for continued work and suggestions.

Why use an SEO freelancer

How quickly can you rank my website?

SEO is not for anyone looking for immediate results. White hat search engine optimisation takes time. How quickly your website will be ranked depends on the competitiveness of your keywords. For lower competition keywords you can see results in as early as 2 to 3 months. For higher competition keywords you can see results in as early as 3 to 4 months.

When and how will I be updated on the progress of the SEO efforts?

You will always receive a monthly report in the beginning of each month that will inform you of the work that has been completed and what has been achieved for the month.

What is included in your monthly SEO report?

We believe in keeping you informed of the work we are doing in order to rank your website. The report includes information on keyword rankings, the accomplishments for the month, a traffic analysis report and any recommendations for better conversion.

What can I do to increase the traffic to my website?

This is one of the most frequent questions we hear. Of course SEO efforts will always help your website gain more traffic. As a website owner there is one big thing you can always do to help increase traffic to your website – create more content.  Creating new pages and adding new content to your website is very important. It will nicely supplement the SEO efforts. This will not only provide more information for site visitors but it will also demonstrate to search engines that your website is important because it is continually updated.

Do you guarantee your results?

We do not guarantee our results, however, this does not mean that we won’t achieve first page rankings. No ethical, white hat SEO company will guarantee results. The reason is because search engines continually change their algorithm for how they rank websites. Any company that guarantees their SEO work likely uses spam or black hat techniques for ranking your website. These methods can quickly get your website to the top of search engines but it is a quick and easy way for getting your website dropped from the search engines as well.

We only use organic, ethical techniques for ranking your website. Our goal is to get your website to the top spots on the first page of major search engines AND keep you there. We are happy to share examples of our work with you and we are proud to say we have always achieved first page rankings for our customers.  Our goal is to get your website ranked as high on the first page of Google as possible.

Will there be any additional costs?

There may be additional costs if you make the decision to change your website to benefit SEO efforts. For example, when we begin SEO work, we review your website during the on-site optimisation process. We look for any conversion techniques you have used within the design. If you are not currently using any conversion techniques, we will strongly recommend you make changes to ensure you are able to convert the new traffic the website receives from SEO work. We can provide you with a quote to complete these changes, you can make them yourself or you can hire someone else to complete them.

As the SEO process continues and we analyse the conversion rate we may recommend changes. Many website owners like to assist in the SEO process. We recommend continuously adding new content to the site. If we have built your website you have a content management system that will allow you to do this. Or if you prefer we can do this for you.

What search engines will I appear in?

Our main focus is achieving high rankings in Google as 80% of searchers use Google to find products and services. Once high rankings are achieved in Google you will start to see rankings in Yahoo and Bing as well.

Local vs. National Search Engine optimisation

Our local search engine optimisation packages are great for businesses attempting to sell their products or services to customers in specific geographical areas. For example, if you own a local restaurant in Bristol or you provide closet organisation products and services to customers in Bath, local search engine optimisation will help drive traffic to your website. 

National SEO focuses on websites with a national target audience. For these website owners it does not matter where the customer lives.

The keywords / key phrases used in local or national SEO differ. Local SEO targets visitors from a specific geographic location whereas national SEO targets visitors from anywhere in the nation. National SEO is harder to achieve and takes more time and resources to accomplish.

Video SEO

Video has become increasingly popular these days. Many people prefer to watch a video to learn information than to read about it. Video SEO focuses on driving traffic to your video versus your website, however, visitors will  be driven to your website from the video so you will likely see an increase in traffic in both places. 

So how does it work? Well, like local website SEO you can select up to 5 keywords for your local area based on keyword research and we will optimise your business videos to drive traffic for those specific keywords, using some of the same techniques described in the website SEO section of this guide.

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Our comprehensive approach

SEO Terms

Search Engine Optimisation is a combination of advanced strategies that constantly evolve. Your website must be handled with specific care an attention to ensure the maximum results.

We pride ourselves on building websites optimised for being found in search results. Otherwise, what’s the point?

Below is a list of frequently asked questions around search engine optimisation. 

What is a SERP? SERP is a common phrase in the web development industry. It stands for “Search Engine Results Page”. Simply, a SERP is the page you get after you type in a search in Google. It’s the page that lists out the websites relevant to your search query.

 

How are ranking decisions made? This is a complicated question to answer, but to make it simple, search engines have algorithms that measure the quality of websites based on thousands of factors. A search engine is only effective when it provides quality results, so they work hard to ensure only the best results make it to the top of the list.

 

Why is it important to be in the top 3 spots? The top 3 organic results (the listings that appear under advertisements or local listings) account for over 50% of the clicks on a SERP. This means, if you are in one of the top 3 spots, people searching are much more likely to visit your page.

 

Why is Google so powerful? As a society we have adapted using “Google” as an interchangeable phrase for “search”. They are the leader by a longshot, and typically the strategy implemented to rank better in Google yields positive result in other search engines.

The research phase of building a long-term search engine optimisation strategy is the most crucial… unfortunately it’s what a lot of SEO companies don’t do.

In order to develop a plan to give you the best chance of getting quality traffic, you must first measure the quality of what already exists. This research includes:

  • Understanding your products and services 
  • Identifying keyword phrases that are relevant to those products & services.
  • Identifying the main competitors currently ranking for those keywords.
  • Look for keyword opportunities that are being underutilised.
  • Analysing competitors domain and backlinks (links to their website).
  • Measure search volume and determine which keywords provide the highest return on investment.

On-page SEO refers to the structure, code, markup and content on your website that is crafted to help boost your search results rankings. There are many factors that go into having strong on-page SEO.

  • Keywords in Title & Headings
  • Long Tail Title Tags
  • Image Alt & Title Tags
  • Keyword Placement & Density
  • Audio & Video Content
  • Regularly Updated Content
  • Long Form Content
  • Internal & External Linking

In order to have a page built to rank in search engines, there are some things your developer must do to give you the best chance.

  • SEO Friendly URL
  • Page Meta Descriptions
  • Optimise Loading Times
  • Mobile Friendly Design
  • Sitemaps
  • SSL Certificates

Technical SEO describes elements of the background of your website.

This includes:

  • Crawl optimisation
  • Indexation optimisation
  • Mobile optimisation
  • Page speed optimisation
  • Structured data optimisation

Technical SEO can often seem daunting, as you do need a little more technical knowledge to maximise the results, but nailing these elements can really increase your search engine ranking and user experience.

Depending on your industry there are a number of ways to develop content for your site that will help maximise your results.

If you are selling a product online, this could include backlink strategies that help promote your website across other spaces on the internet, improving the quality and quantity of reviews, schema markup for more accurate results, and much more.

Local businesses that provide services use different methods in developing content for their site. This could include directory listings, landing pages for specific services, long-form blog content to answer customers questions or qualify your expertise.

No matter what industry you’re in, there are ways to develop effective content to help get your website clicks.

We work with our customers to develop a strategy that will improve the quality of their pages and drive more qualified traffic to their website.

Almost half of all mobile searches are for local services or businesses. Local SEO allows search engines to pin-point your location to ensure your business appears in SERP's for the right audience and locations. 

Local optimisation includes:

  • Google My Business
  • NAP optimisation
  • Local schema markup
  • Citation building
  • Location landing pages

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Why trust Glade SEO & Design?

"Roanna is brilliant to work with. She carefully explained the process of our SEO audit, giving us the information we needed, without all the unnecessary jargon that we didn't! Roanna has given us clear instructions on how to work with our website to get the best results. I can't recommend Glade SEO & Design enough. James Worrall - Antiques, Art & 20th Century"
"Roanna helped me out with a rather fantastic SEO audit and site optimisation. I would say she's knowledgeable, organised, thorough, attentive, efficient and trustworthy. She’s also personable, responsive to individual needs and is great at following up on queries. She really goes the extra mile and, like my (newly optimised) website, ranks very highly in my view."
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