If you are searching to find out “What is SEO?” (search engine optimisation), and how search engines work, then I have written a brief SEO article about “What is SEO?” below.
The “What is SEO?” guide is aimed at people who are new to the subject and wish to obtain a basic understanding of how SEO can affect website performance.
The aim of SEO is to enable a website or blog to rank high on search engines to gain more traffic than competitors using the same keywords or search terms.
Firstly, it would be beneficial to explain what search engines are. You have probably heard of Google, Bing, Yahoo and other search engines, but what do they actually do and how do they work?
A search engine is known as a program that searches for and finds items in a computer database that correspond to keywords that someone enters in the search box. The results displayed are matches to the words that the person has entered.
Try out my custom search engine powered by Google for.
A search engine is used for finding particular websites on the internet. For example, if you entered “dog grooming” in the search engine, the best matching websites relating to dog grooming will be displayed from the database in order of content priority which is useful to the user. This brings us onto the SEO.
SEO stands for search engine optimisation. Search engine optimisation is the process used to affect how well a website ranks in a search engine. The aim of SEO is to ensure the website is displayed at the very top or rank high in the search engine index.
Best Search Engine
In my opinion Google is the best search engine as it favours secure websites and also websites that are mobile friendly so that the content can be viewed on all devices. You have probably heard people say, “Do you know about so an so?”. they answer, “Google it!”. Google is my preferred choice of search engine but Bing is also good to use.
SEO Analysis and SEO Checklist
In this section we will discuss a basic SEO checklist (free SEO check) and how you can use it to affect your website’s performance in search engines. If you want to be high on search engines there are certain things you can do to ensure you have a good chance of appearing on page one of search engines likes Google.
There are free SEO websites available that can check your website’s URL (web address) into the SEO checker to see how you appear on a search engine. I use a website to check all of my websites to ensure there are no errors that will prevent its ranking.
Here are the aspects that the SEO check will cover:
- Meta tags SEO
- Meta tag analysis for the website’s title and description
- Webpage analysis for speed and load time
- Keywords found in H1, H2, H3, H4, H5, H6 heading tags
- How search engines will see your website
- Keywords found in anchor tags
- Keywords found in image tags
- Keywords found on page
- How many URL’s are found on a page – more than 100 is not good
To check your website feel free to use the below SEO checker provided by SEO Centro.
SEO Performance Score
Every website will have an SEO score. The better the score the better your website will rank in the search engine’s index. You will get a percentage score for title and description aspects of your website with the free SEO checker. Other aspects that affect SEO are good quality and well written content, links to your website called back links, website page speed, page load times and your website’s mobile friendliness.
There are two free checkers that you can use to check how fast your pages load and if it will display on the latest devices such as smart phones and tablets. These are:
If you do not score highly on the above the chances are you will not rank very high. If you need assistance please visit ourfor friendly advice on what is SEO.
How do I check SEO?
With the websites I build for people, the first thing I ask is what do you want to be famous for on the internet and what are the key search terms you want to be found for on the search engines likes Google etc.
If I use the latest website I have built as an example, this should highlight the key actions to ensure you too can rank highly on search engines.
So my friend wanted to be famous for personal trainer Leamington Spa in Warwickshire. What we need to do to ensure that the personal trainer website ranks high on Google is the following:
- Ensure personal trainer Leamington Spa, Warwickshire is in the website title and description.
- Ensure that personal trainer Leamington Spa features in image alt tags, H1 headings and is used in the content of the website.
To see for yourself how we have achieved page one of Google for person trainer in Leamington Spa, see the images below:
Meta tag anaylsis
Keywords found on page
Two keywords found on page
- Use the keyword you want to be famous for in the website’s URL, title and description
- Write good quality text using variations of the keywords of your choice
- Ensure your website loads quickly
- Ensure your website is mobile friendly by using a responsive theme
- Use the SEO checker to ensure your title and description are green and score as near to 100% as possible
- If you use WordPress use Yoast SEO to help you write good content
- Use keywords in image alt tags
- Do not duplicate content from the internet ( do not copy it word from word), use your own wording and unique content
- When using headings include the keywords
What is SEO: Summary
So, I hope you have learnt some SEO basics and used the free SEO checks and website tools to see how your website will appear on search engines. If you would like me to check your website for all three aspects please let me know.
I can give you some basic advice that will help you get on page one. I have got a number of websites at the very top of Google by using these SEO techniques.
I hope you have been able to take some basic SEO tips from this article.
If you require further information on WordPress SEO tips please get in touch.
WordPress SEO tips & best practice
Find out how to check and improve your WordPress website or blog’s SEO by using the best plugins and a free SEO checker.
Here we recommend some very useful, and in my opinion, the best WordPress plugins to enhance your site’s SEO.
If you are looking to find out what SEO (search engine optimisation) is, then you may be interested in this SEO article. The article covers what SEO is and the definition of SEO.
For a number of months I have been testing and finding out how to make my WordPress blog perform better in regards SEO.
I have run a lot of tests using the most popular free SEO checking websites and tweaking plugin settings. If you search in Google for Free SEO Checker you are met with some very good free SEO testing tools.
There are two SEO checking services I like to use. One is by Seoptimer and the other is SEO Centro.
In this post I will show you the results from a recent free SEO check and how I use WordPress plugins to achieve the scores.
I am not an SEO expert by any means, the results are mainly from using the most popular WordPress plugins – all are free and pretty easy to configure.
WordPress SEO Checklist
The areas that are checked during the test are as follows:
Each of the above sections are scored. Here are my latest results for this website Justin’s Blog:
Here are the different individual SEO areas:
As you can see from the results my website scores:
- SEO = B
- Performance = A
- UI/Mobile = A-
- Social = E-
- Security A+
Overall my website scores B-.
So, from the results, you will see my Social online presence needs serious attention although the other SEO aspects seem pretty good to be fair. The results are down to the best WordPress plugins helping the site.
The results show I need to work harder on interacting Facebook, Twitter and Google+ etc with my website. I do have social media accounts although I do not update things very often. My Twitter following is very low and I have not got a Facebook page associated with my website.
Putting the Social aspect aside, I will share with you how the other scores have been achieved.
WordPress SEO Tips
Taking each SEO section one at a time, I will explain to you which WordPress plugins I use and the settings used to achieve the scores.
The plugin I use for my WordPress SEO is Yoast SEO. This is one of the best SEO plugins available in the directory. The reason I like Yoast SEO is that it is easy to use and uses a simple traffic light system. Green is good!
You need to make sure that you are adding title and meta descriptions to every page, every post and try to write more than 300 words per article or page. Make sure to add ALT image tags including your keywords to your images.
Here are some examples of the settings in Yoast SEO:
This is the section where you put your main description on your website. The below is what is used by search engines:
Here is where you put your post description and so on,it can be found underneath your blog post section:
Yoast SEO also includes a Sitemap function to tell search engines about the pages and posts of your website. I have Jetpack installed so use the sitemap function in there as opposed to the Yoast one. As long as you use a sitemap either are fine to use.
I totally recommend Yoast SEO plugin. If you have any queries about the SEO aspect of your website please get in touch.
The performance score relates to how fast your website page loads. This is a key factor in performance these days. Everyone wants a website to load fast. If is doesn’t you will lose your visitors.
The WordPress plugin I use is W3 Total Cache Plugin. If you are interested in using the W3 plugin, there are some comprehensive tutorials available online. I have been tweaking the settings for a long time and have finally got them to work pretty well with the theme I am using.
I use the speed testing website GT Metrix to test the speed of my website and to find out what is slowing it down.
Here is the latest page speed test:
If you require assistance in using the plugin feel free to get in touch.
The SEO UI/Mobile score is all about how the website will look on all devices. Is the website easy to read? As long as you choose a mobile responsive theme then you should also scores high on this section.
As mentioned earlier, I need to work on my Social presence. Due to time constraints, I cannot see this improving very quickly. As long as you have a good Twitter following, a Facebook and Google+ page associated with your website, you should do well. The good thing is at least I know where I need to improve.
These days website security is a key factor in SEO. It is recommended that all websites use the https:// prefix. I have an SSL certificate installed on my domain which was available from my hosting provider. I did have to pay for this mind you.
WordPress SEO Summary
In summary, the best SEO tips I can give you, as an average user of WordPress are:
- Install WordPress plugins Jetpack, WordFence, Yoast SEO, W3 Cache, Google Analytics
- Write at least 300 words per post or page – content is king as they say
- Make sure to use a focus keyword in Yoast SEO
- Enter page or post titles and descriptions in the Yoast SEO sections
- Use a mobile responsive theme to look good on any device
- Connect your social media accounts like Twitter, Facebook pages and Google+ to your website
- Run free SEO checks to identify SEO improvements
- Run speed tests to see how fast your page loads – search in Google for: GT Metrix
- Install an SSL certificate and run your website as https
- Limit the amount of html code in pages such as affiliate banners and adverts etc
- Interlink blog posts with one another, link relative posts to each other
- Build your back links so websites and blogs link to yours