What is SEO and How It Works – A Detailed Guide

Are you eager to learn about Search Engine Optimization (SEO)? Then, you have landed at the right place.

Whether it’s about knowing the basics of SEO or going in-depth to know how SEO works – this post is the gateway to all the SEO knowledge and mastery. SEO is the practice of improving a website’s visibility in the search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. However, it is not as simple the way it sounds. With one major goal of getting more traffic on your website, SEO has become one of the most important requisites for a website’s success.

Before we start with other comprehensive details of every aspect of SEO and its purpose, let’s take a broader look at the three most important questions of SEO.

What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

As mentioned above, SEO is the full form of Search Engine Optimization which means optimizing content so that the site’s ranking in the search engines improves. SEO connects a searcher to your site. Put simply, SEO is the practice or technique of drawing organic traffic to your page by bringing it to the top of search engine result pages (SERPs). This is done by publishing content with relevant keywords that searchers usually search for in Google, Yahoo, Bing, or other search engines while looking for your product or service type. The higher the rankings of your website, the more the chance of people seeing it. Hence, SEO gains the attention of the people on the internet and helps in attracting potential customers to your website. This is the reason businesses utilize the search engine optimization services of professional SEO companies to help them with drawing quality leads to their websites.

SEO not only depends on the page content but also on other factors like website UI/UX, page speed, website authority, page links, mobile friendliness, and many more which will be discussed in detail in the later sections of this blog post.


How does SEO function?

If you ask “how does SEO works?”, then the answer would be, SEO works in a very intriguing way in search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. These engines have bots that go through millions of sites on the internet and crawl pages to collect content from them to index as per SEO algorithms. The function of the algorithms is to analyze the pages and rank them in an order which will appear in the search results. However, the page rankings are determined by several crucial ranking factors. Based on these factors, search bots decide which page or website serves the purpose of the searchers best and rank them accordingly.

In other words, if the page has all the information that a searcher is looking for, then the search bot will bring that page to the top position of Google or other search engines. Thus, it can be said that to increase your rankings in organic search results you need to publish informative and high-value content. An example has been shown below for your better understanding.


Content Marketing

The search algorithms are meant to bring to light highly authoritative and relevant pages that would give the searchers a smooth search experience. You can also seek the service of SEO experts and content writers from a top online digital marketing company to optimize your website content as per the latest SEO trends and rank it higher in SERPs.


Is SEO important in the marketing of your business?

SEO has become a most integral part of online or digital marketing strategy. Why? Because it helps businesses boost their online presence and help in increasing online visibility.

As per the latest research data, more than 8.5 billion searches are performed on Google per day.Google dominates the desktop market share with nearly 84% of users globally using Google for their searches.

Therefore, to cut through the noise and secure the top position on Google, it is important to optimize your page content and make it SEO friendly.

worldwide market share of search engines

Your digital marketing efforts should include an SEO strategy as it is the primary source of driving organic traffic. Search engine algorithms are continuously evolving and changing to make the search experience of users more satisfying. Therefore, you too need to keep your page optimized to ensure that the visitors coming to your page do not leave soon. For a business website, achieving a top place in search engine results is vital. But the difficult part comes next. Maintaining that leading position, in the long run, is more important to make your business discoverable on the web. The three most compelling reasons to consider SEO in your online marketing strategy.


Online Visibility –

What’s the use of a website if searchers cannot see it? SEO ensures that your website gets discovered or found easily by users. And to accomplish this, your site needs to be on the first page of search results. By the first page, it means your website should be among the top 10 results. Sounds tough, right? When SEO is done correctly by your hired digital marketing company, it can reserve a place on page one of the popular search engines. To achieve this, SEO professionals look into various aspects of your website – content, keywords used, page speed, design, metatags, page URLs, etc.


Brand Awareness –

SEO is a brilliant way to make your target audience aware of your brand. Besides, it aids in increasing your brand’s authority and makes your business trustworthy in the eyes of potential customers. Through SEO, you can reach a wider audience who haven’t heard of your business before. When searchers put a search term related to your business and your page appears in front of them, it garners trust and helps in brand recognition. Thus, SEO gives the right kind of exposure online that your brand requires to drive sales.


Engagement –

SEO techniques and tools help you to analyze and monitor your website’s performance on the SERPs. And one of the most vital elements of performance monitoring is checking how visitors interact and engage with your website. It helps you to gain insights on which content is being read most and which page is visited the maximum number of times. The important SEO parameters that are used to assess the website performance are click-through rates, returning or repeat visitors, time spent on site, total no.of page views, session duration, and of course, in the end, the number of conversions.


Our Step-by-Step Guide to SEO

In the guide below, our SEO experts throw light on the most important fundamentals of SEO and its success factors. We will also walk you through other important aspects of SEO that are imperative in getting more website visitors from organic searches.


Types of SEO

The three main divisions of SEO have been explained below in detail so as to help you understand which approach or approaches to use to improve rankings.
On-page SEO –

This approach focuses on the elements of the website such as content, HTML code, internal links, title tags, meta tags, images, design, etc. to improve the site rankings on the SERPs. On-page SEO also aids in improving the user experience and ensures that your visitors are able to find what they are seeking. If a visitor immediately leaves your page, it means their landing experience is not at all satisfactory.

Hence, to meet the expectations of your visitors, you should emphasize the following things:

  • Posting engaging and meaningful content, thus making it easy for search bots to optimize
  • Use of appropriate HTML tags to highlight important information
  • Checking for plagiarised or duplicate content
  • Optimizing images on the website
  • Structuring clear and easy-to-understand URL


Off-page SEO –

Off-page SEO means working on external factors other than the website which influences the rankings of your page. Off-page gives importance to all those elements that have the capacity to boost your website ranking and increase visibility online.

These elements include:

  • Social media marketing
  • Online reputation management i.e customer reviews on Google and other platforms
  •  External links or backlinks quality
  • Guest Postings
  • Local Listings
  • Community Building


Technical SEO –

Last but not least, comes technical SEO which cannot be ignored if you want your website to be found easily. Technical SEO should be included in your SEO strategy. It is the process of optimizing your website and checking whether the technical aspects of your website are as per the modern standards of search engines. Technical SEO is helpful in assisting search bots in successfully indexing and crawling your website.

The factors that are looked after in technical SEO are:

  • Website loading speed and time
  • Website’s readability
  • User Experience
  • Mobile responsiveness
  • Site architecture


Content And SEO Work Together To Make Your Website A Success

Talking about SEO, content comes first because it is the content that searchers look for in Google and other search engines. Content and SEO go hand-in-hand to make your website easily discoverable on the internet.

Content for SEO can be of any type. It can be your website page content or blog articles with relevant keywords and search terms which will help in increasing your search engine visibility. However, merely writing anything and posting it will not bring fruitful results on Google or other search engine rankings.


Content lays the foundation of SEO and to make this foundation strong, you should look into the following 3 areas carefully.

1. Content Quality –

Your content must compel them to stay longer on your page and take further action such as initiating a conversation or leading to conversion. By quality content, we mean providing visitors with purposeful, original, and informational content that helps them in answering their questions and find a solution. As per Google’s content quality guidelines, content is defined as high-quality when the information provided is accurate, unique, and in-depth.

2. Research –

Keyword research is a quintessential part of every content used for SEO. Keywords are the search terms used by your target audience to find information about the product or service you provide. Proper keyword research and incorporating them in appropriate places in the content are signs of good quality content. Hence, before starting off with content creation, you must do proper keyword research to check whether these keywords are viable and are put by users in search queries.

Keyword research


3. Content Update –

Google’s Query Deserved Freshness (QDF) is another content re-ranking factor that rewards content that has fresh information and follows the newest trends. This means Google will push down the rankings of those pages whose content has either become obsolete or old. Updating content regularly will give a freshness boost to your site and help Google bots recognize your content as up-to-date, thereafter, increasing your rank.

4. Answers –

Providing answers to questions that users frequently ask on the web is an incredible tactic to boost your page ranking. Creating content that visitors actually want to read will also ensure that they stay on the page longer. Writing answers has a two-way benefit in SEO. One, it meets the users’ needs directly as the content is written in a way that directly addresses their needs. Second, search engine bots crawl pages to bring direct answers to search queries in the SERPs. And, if you’re lucky enough, your content might get a top position and appear as a featured snippet.

To conclude, the factors that determine the quality of the content are – originality, relevance to search queries, freshness, and keyword usage. All of these together contribute to creating a great piece of content and at the same time, help search bots find your content faster and bring it before the searchers’ eyes.


Read Also: Shopify vs. Magento: Which One to Pick For Your eCommerce Business?


How SEO Improves Website’s Authority

After content creation, you need to ensure that the users engage with your content. Your site’s authority and reputation determine whether visitors are going to trust your content and stay on the page. Through off-page SEO tactics such as Google reviews, social media marketing, Youtube SEO, etc. you can gain the trust of your audience and make them believe that the content published serves their interest best. Let’s take a look at the 3 essential components that are helpful in improving your site’s position on search engines.

Authority –

Your site authority measures how influential or significant you are on the internet in your business niche or industry online. High-authority sites are often recognized as market leaders or players based on their online reputation. Information presented by high authority sites is from trusted sources and therefore, searchers naturally intend to trust these pages. A few outstanding examples are The Guardian, BBC, and The New York Times. Low-authority site takes time to earn trust and recognition, especially when the competition is huge in your niche. SEO helps in improving your site’s authority by providing insightful content for your potential leads.

Engagement –

Pages with high-quality content encourage interactions with page visitors which will improve your website engagement metrics like visitors’ time on the page, session duration, page bounce rate, and so on. Posting engaging content directly impacts your site’s performance and increases the conversion rate.

Reputation –

To make a permanent impression on the minds of the readers, page reputation needs to be looked after. Maintaining a good online reputation will give your visitors the belief that your site can be trusted and contains all the information that they are seeking.



What does personalization mean in SEO rankings?

Search engines provide results to users based on their geographic location, language, user experience, search intent, and search history. Search personalization is a unique ability of Google where the search engine algorithms analyze the data you have earlier used to search and takes into account user-specific elements to tailor your search results as per your preferences.


Read Also: How To Build an App Like Uber



Utilizing New Verticals in Search Results

SEO is no longer limited to traditional search practices because voice search, image search, and local and video search are also gaining attention among users. These new and trending verticals provide a better search experience to those surfing the web. It saves time for the users and helps in providing them with more accurate information. Although no separate techniques or skills are required to optimize your content according to these new verticals, you must try to craft your content marketing strategy in a manner that makes it easy for these search verticals to capture.

Utilizing New Verticals in Search Results


Final Words: Getting Started With SEO

SEO takes a substantial amount of time to bring desired results, especially in fast-evolving search engine environments. That being said, a well-built SEO strategy backed by proper keyword research, a good understanding of the industry niche, and adequate knowledge of the latest SEO tactics and trends can accomplish your website goal in much less time.

Sounds daunting? We can help! If you don’t know where to start, then reach out to the best SEO agency in Kolkata. We have a team of highly qualified SEO professionals and content creators who have profound knowledge of best SEO practices and techniques. They can implement them seamlessly in your online marketing strategy and help your business get discovered quickly by searchers.


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