SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION (SEO) STEP-BY-STEP 
With the help of search engine optimization (SEO), you can get stable, valuable traffic to your website in the long run. Plus, it’s free.
No wonder search engine optimization is currently one of the hottest topics in the online business. I will walk you through the basics of SEO in this article.
What is SEO? What is SEO?
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization . SEO is an online marketing tool designed to increase traffic to your website.
Search engine optimization is designed to bring a lot of new users from your Google search engine to your website. Get ahead of as many search terms and phrases as possible in your Google search results.
Unlike the world of online PPC ads (Google Ads, Facebook, etc.), which only bring visitors if you keep paying, SEO brings stable results because it targets organic (unpaid) traffic. Flesh-and-blood people who are looking for answers to their problems and solutions in the search engine. Most of the time, they research information, not planning a specific purchase.
The huge advantage of SEO over advertising is that it does not necessarily require a significant and continuous investment of money.
Parts of search engine optimization
We usually divide search engine optimization into three areas:
- SEO techniques
- On-page SEO
- Off-page SEO.
Technical SEO refers to the set of settings without which Google will simply not notice your website. Examples include making your website indexable by the algorithm, or website speed .
On -page SEO is primarily about optimizing the content (text, images, videos) that appear on a website. This includes the keyword research already mentioned, the creation of content and the segmentation and editing according to SEO rules (for example, setting the SEO title or creating the appropriate text hierarchy – titles, subheadings, etc.) and the correct use of internal links. Maybe that’s the area you spend most of your time with.
Off -page SEO is about mapping and managing all the external factors that can affect your website’s ranking in Google rankings. Its most important component is effective link building , but it also includes the presence of social media, for example.
Ads and organic results on the Google results list
Let’s first look at how the hit list (SERP) looks. The top results when it comes to a business-critical keyword are, in many cases, paid ads. These are also indicated by the word “Advertisement”. This is followed by the first natural or organic hits. The pages whose content Google thinks are most relevant to that search.
The goal of search engine optimization is to be at the forefront of organic results for relevant keywords.
For example, if you sell women’s shoes in Kecskemét, it will probably be important for you that if someone enters the terms “women’s shoes Kecskemét” or “shoe store Kecskemét” in the search engine, your business will also appear in the results. These words and phrases are called keywords.
How many should you be on the Google results list?
Preferably first, but at least you should aim for one of the top five places.
According to general statistics, the website at the top of the list receives 30 percent of the clicks, the second 14 percent, and the third 10 percent. A 9-10. The clickthrough rate (CTR) of the site is now just 5 percent of the list 2-3. you only get a small click on your page.
In light of these numbers, of course, you may immediately wonder if it’s worth doing SEO at all. After all, before organic hits, there are paid hits in the top spots anyway. If you need lightning fast results and a lot of money, it can really be easier and faster to get to the ads. Search engine optimization is for those who want results in the long run and have the patience to wait.
From an SEO standpoint, it’s not worth wasting too much attention on keywords that receive insignificant advertising. Fortunately, there are plenty of important keywords in most topics that have little or no advertising.
Such keywords represent the best chance of reaching customers online without paid advertising.
What do you need to be at the top of the results list?
The truth is, we can’t be completely 100 percent sure. This is because Google does not disclose how it compiles search results lists. It is thought to take into account hundreds, if not thousands, of factors. We certainly don’t know many of these at all. In addition, the algorithm is constantly evolving and is updated up to 500-600 times a year.
That’s why a lot of what SEO professionals think about Google’s operation is, strictly speaking, just an assumption.
There is a consensus on many key issues, such as the importance of an easy-to-understand website structure. But it also happens that on certain issues, different professionals are arguing for completely contradictory positions. For example, should the keyword be included in the meta description? There is no one who can do justice because one method may have worked well for one in a certain situation and not for the other.
While Google publishes its general policy , it reveals pretty much what Google expects from website owners. However, the reality is much more nuanced than that. From the outset, the guidelines do not answer many detailed questions. In addition, there are standard SEO methods, such as link building with paid links, that violate Google’s policies. Yet, in many cases, they work brilliantly in practice.
SEO is a complex field. You can read more about what to do below. But if I have to highlight one thing, I suggest this:
If you want to be in the right place in the list of results, give what Google wants most: create outstanding content that’s really valuable to your users.
A very effective way, for example, is to start your own blog and write new posts regularly. But a vlog, a podcast series or anything else can be a good choice. The point is that what you do is quality, exciting and valuable.
What is ethical SEO?
What does an SEO professional do?
WordPress website search engine optimization
The first rule of effective SEO is to work with Google
For search engine optimization to work effectively, you first need to understand that this game is played according to Google’s policies. You can’t win against Google unless you work with it. But for that, you need to have a clear idea of Google’s intentions.
Google’s primary, most important goal is to maintain its market-leading position among search engines. To do this, you need to provide the best service available to your users, meaning you should always find the best results for that particular search term.
If you want to be at the top of the results list for the search terms and words that are important to you, your website should be the best.
What makes your website the best hit in the eyes of Google? Google is basically looking for websites that can give meat-and-blood users what they are looking for. Be it information, product or solution to a problem. Your website must satisfy the search intent of your users.
Google wants satisfied users. If your website makes users happy, Google will love it. Your reward will be good placement and significant organic traffic.
The cornerstones of effective SEO
We have already talked about the triple division of SEO (Technical SEO, On-page SEO and Off-page SEO). Within this, you need to pay close attention to four areas if you want to effectively search engine optimize your website.
- Keyword search
- Creating quality content
- Maximize the user experience
- Creating credibility
And of course there are certain technical bases that need to be in order. Such as indexability, proper URL settings, use of metadata, application of the correct HTML structure.
Robots.txt, the gatekeeper
Keyword Search: Learn about users’ issues
The first step in SEO is to find out exactly what terms and words users are searching for on Google in the topic of your website.
Keyword search is not just a mechanical job. Not only do you need to find the specific keywords, but you also need to understand what’s behind it. You need to know your search intent, if only because Google strives to do so and builds your search results ranking based on your presumed search intent.
SEO also means learning to write and talk about what interests your target audience.
Build a list of 100-200 items with words and phrases that your target audience often searches for.
To compile the list, you can use free of charge, among other things:
- Google search, such as auto-completed search terms or the “Related searches” box at the bottom of the page
- Google’s free keyword planner
- The Ubersuggestet
- The free version of Rank Tracker
- Ahrefs keyword search engine
In the free Google Search Console, you can check what keywords your search engine is ranking your website for.
I also provided suggestions for keyword searching in my SEO Tips article.
Creating quality content
SEO is first and foremost about creating quality content. There is no search engine optimization without high-quality, interesting custom text.
First of all, it doesn’t hurt to clarify what Google means by quality content: informative and unique text, images, videos, podcasts, etc. that are original, that is, your intellectual property, not copied from somewhere in a copy-paste way.
You don’t have to invent Spanish wax. On the other hand, you should strive to provide something extra compared to the information you can find on the Internet anyway.
For example, if a visitor finds a bunch of information in your professional blog posts that is meaningfully aggregated that you would otherwise only be able to scrape together from 10 other websites with a long search, then you already have the added value. The plus can even be the charm of your personal style, for example, if you write very well or if you can edit enjoyable videos. The point is to make the content you offer unique in some way.
You also need to know what Google doesn’t like: for example, auto-generated content, duplicate content, affiliate links without real content, trolling, spam comments, invisible to visitors, with keywords stuffed with hidden texts.
Creating good content is not an easy task, especially at first. Later, once you get the routine, it will be much easier.
Let me give you some advice to get you started. ( See my SEO copywriting article for more information.)
Always write to the user, not Google
Match your search intent
Have the best content
There is no general rule for the ideal length of blog posts
Write simply and transparently
Maximize the user experience
Google is working hard to put the user experience (UX) at the heart of the search engine.
There are basically two ways Google can measure user experience. The first is the click-through rate (CTR) and the second is the bounce rate. The first indicates how much users are willing to click on your content in the results list, and the second measures how long users are willing to spend more time on your website.
There is a broad consensus in SEO circles that CTR plays a real role in the ranking method. For example, if your keyword is ranked second on Google by a keyword, but many more people click on it than the first-ranked website, you’ll likely be first on the list over time.
Bounce rates are heavier nuts, we don’t really know for sure if it will affect your Google rankings. For example, Matt Cutts, a former Google executive, denied it, while there are several indications that the algorithm still takes this indicator into account in some form. Maybe we’re not far from the reality of claiming that bounce rates are indirectly related to Google rankings, because if it’s a bad indicator, it refers to problems that the algorithm is likely to sense one way or another.
Google basically wants satisfied users. And satisfied users don’t leave a website after 5 seconds.
One of the bases of the user experience is the content itself, the interesting titles, the smooth texts, the images selected with a good sense. You can also count on how accessible the website is, ie how manageable and transparent it is to the widest possible audience.
In addition to good content, the user experience is affected by a number of semi-technical issues. I now highlight three of these in the drop-down windows below.
Web design and typography
Google loves authentic websites. Websites that are guaranteed to show serious expertise in a topic.
Credibility, even in real life, can be given to us by others. We will be authentic if others think we are authentic. Google is trying to bring the same to the online world.
That’s why it only matters how many articles and posts about outstanding expertise are on your website.
But also how many links point to the website. More specifically, the quality of external links is no longer an important factor.
The importance of links from an SEO point of view is not the traffic they convey. But for Google, every link is a sign: “Hey, listen, this is a good website”!
A lot of quality links mean to Google that the linked website is authentic.
That’s why you need to deal with quality link building .
In addition to the number and quality of links, the credibility of the website is enhanced by the presence of active social media, the proper use of Google My Business, and any professional connections that have a trace on the Internet.
What is link building?
Link building is an essential part of building credibility. Link building is the process of trying to get the best possible external links to our website through a conscious strategy.
When determining the list of results, Google doesn’t just consider how strong the content of the page is and how SEO-friendly it is.
Quality is a key issue for link building. Today, with masses of worthless links – once a common way to build links – a website can be permanently destroyed in no time. On the other hand, a link from a strong, high-traffic website that is relevant to your content can help a lot.
Building the right link profile is one of the cornerstones of search engine optimization work.
What links do you like and why does Google penalize you?
Google prefers natural links. That is, links that we don’t build but just get because, for example, we’ve written very good content.
The problem is that with a start-up website, you can only kick the ball with a properly built link profile. We will never have organic traffic on most topics without strong links. And if there is no traffic, no natural links are built.
The goal is to have a more natural link profile. Links from suspicious sites that are irrelevant to the subject matter of our website should be avoided as they may be bitten by Google.
You should also avoid anchor text that is thickly stuffed with keywords. For example, the title of the linked page or post and the URL can be used in the anchor text instead of keywords.
In the eyes of Google, they are the strongest links that
- appear on a strong, authentic website. There are no industrially outbound links on the source page (i.e. not a link catalog or link farm).
- the source page and the linked page are thematically related. For example, if you have an SEO website, an external link from a gardening website will be worth less than a link from another online marketing blog.
- the link is not in the footer or sidebar, but in the content (contextual link).
- the anchor text of the link does not consist solely of keywords, but refers to the content of the linked page.
Possibilities of quality link building
The traditional link-building method was for the website owner to register in as many link directories as possible, with virtually no quantity in mind.
Today, this is less important, although more demanding link catalogs still provide some link power. This can be a good help, especially for a completely beginner website, because it is difficult to get serious professional links at first. Crappy, already suspicious-looking link catalogs should be avoided. They will certainly not bring serious benefits, but they could be a source of danger. If they get a hearty Google penalty, they can take our site with them.
Instead of quantity, quality is now much more important.
The best way to build links is to try to place links on websites that are professionally relevant and credible at the top of the results list.
Most of the work comes with guest blogging , but maybe that brings the best results as well. The point is to offer a well-written guest article for another relevant and strong blog. And in the text, we place more links to our own page.
Many bloggers and website owners are open to such collaboration, as it is also good for them to be able to post good quality content on their own interface in exchange for a few links.
Knowledge of SEO is not enough to succeed. You also have to be able to wait for the result
Search engine optimization is a continuous and considered construction.
A lot of people cut in and then give up after a few months because the result isn’t coming. This is a big mistake. It is best to expect results from SEO in half a year.
Of course, it is conceivable that there will be a spectacular improvement in the placement of an important keyword within six months. But it takes 6 months to say the improvement was permanent or just temporary.
That’s why I suggest you be patient when cutting into an SEO project .
Frequently asked Questions
What is search engine optimization (SEO)?
Search engine optimization (SEO) is an online marketing tool. The goal is to get a good position in Google search for as many relevant keywords as possible, bringing significant traffic to your website for free.
How does search engine optimization work?
SEO basically consists of four major tasks: keyword searching, creating quality content, maximizing the user experience, and building credibility. If you pay attention to all four areas, you can be successful in Google search.
What are the biggest benefits of SEO?
The huge advantage of SEO over paid advertising is that it does not necessarily require a significant and continuous investment of money. While an ad only brings traffic as long as you keep paying for it, SEO can help you get stable traffic in the long run.