The Core Components to Learn for Mastering SEO
While new and competitive forms of marketing such as social media and email marketing now make it possible to reach audiences without the need of search engines, SEO remains a pivotal aspect of most brands’ content and sales strategies. The ability to drive large amounts of passive traffic to your website on a continuous basis – and without the need for expensive ad budgets – is appealing to most.
Yet SEO does require a lot of work and patience. Many opt for other methods simply due to the time and labor factors involved, but those who embrace it can be rewarded handsomely. Learning how to effectively utilize SEO requires understanding its core components. In the pursuit of that, let’s look at the core components that you’ll want to understand to get the most out of SEO.
Functionality of Search Engines
Search engines are inherently massive entities, scouring the entirety of the internet to find and index content. Using a complex set of algorithms along with crawlers to identify content, the end result allows users to quickly look for various topics, products and ideas, being shown pages that most closely match both phrasing and intent.
Ultimately, search engines use dozens of factors to weigh which pages and websites are shown most prominently in search. While SEO revolves around the concept of understanding this, we only directly understand a small amount of how this actually works.
There are many ranking factors that influence search results as we mentioned prior, but three in particular are the cornerstones of a successful SEO strategy.
Relevance may be the most important of all: based on how closely your content resembles search intent, it may or may not be shown to audiences in search results.
Authority is also very important, and is generally built by earning backlinks from other websites. If other websites are pinging URLs back to your content, then your authority tends to increase (though there are exceptions).
Lastly, there is utility. Even if your content seems relevant to search engines, it must also prove itself to be functional and useful. As such, outdated tactics like keyword stuffing aren’t enough to rank well.
The Power of Niches
Which sounds better: targeting a SERP with one million monthly users and getting zero traffic from it, or targeting a SERP with one thousand monthly users and getting 50 visitors? This is essentially the modern reality of SEO, in that most brands cannot effectively target larger and more popular search results.
Instead, learning how to build traffic sources through a variety of smaller SERPs is key, and often involves targeting niche audiences.
Last but definitely not least, SEO is about much more than understanding search engines and pinging URLs to them in the form of content. There is what many refer to as the “buckets of SEO”: key tactics that must be utilized to target audiences.
Both on-page and technical forms of SEO are included in this, as is keyword research and link building. These four tactics combined can be highly effective at boosting visibility in the right SERPs.
SEO is a complex art, but mastering it can be accomplished. By focusing on key elements and slowly building your knowledge base, you’ll be able to master the nuances of link building, keyword research, user intent and more!