What is SEO / Search Engine Optimization?
SEO is an acronym short for "Seach Engine Optimization" or the practice of optimizing your website to be seen by the search engines for keywords your site may be targeting.
For example, if your site is a content site about weight loss, then you'll probably be trying to optimize your site so that a person can type into the Google search box with the keywords "Effective weight loss strategies" or "How to lose weight quickly " and ideally, your site will show up in the search engine results page or " SERPs " .
There are a few golden rules on attaining a good ranking in the search engines, as most commonly used search engine phrases are quite competitive. Google and other search engines "rank" these pages according to relevancy, quality, popularity and most importantly, the content of these particular websites, and then the relevant websites show up in the SERPs as they are ranked accordingly. As a basic rule of thumb, the higher the website is ranked in the search engines, the more traffic the website will then receive.
As there are over 20 billion websites currently on the internet, these websites are categorized by language, relevance and popularity into the millions of search phrases used by Google and other search engines on a daily basis.
How Can I Rank For A Particular Keyword in the SERPs?
In the old days, at around the turn of the century, it was as easy as "keyword stuffing" your site with particular keywords that you wanted Google to rank your site for. Back then, this practice was well-known and many sites had an entire section on their webpages dedicated with stuffing as many keywords into the page as the webmasters see fit. This in turn would rank their site in the SERPs and as a result, their website received traffic.
Over time, this generated many poor quality sites, with a lot of "spammy" content which then in turn would have made the quality of the internet SERPs packed with illegitimate webpage garbage, making the phrase "surfing the internet" a very non-user friendly experience.
Thankfully, (much to many internet marketers disgust at the time) major search engine companies such as Google and Yahoo! recognized this, and in turn developed new search engine algorithm changes, to "favor" the internet user's experience online, and overall improve the face of the Internet as it evolved into the 21st century.
Nowadays, it is almost impossible to find a spammy or keyword stuffed website on the first page of the SERPs for competitive keywords. Google and Yahoo! now favor original, content rich websites that are an authority in their field or niche. The more popular the better, and the higher the website is pushed in the SERPs with social media and networking shares, and in return the website is then rewarded with more traffic than other or similar search engine phrases.
How Can I Make An Authority Site Easily?
As a basic rule of thumb, with the above points stated, the following structure must be applied when trying to rank your site in the SERPs:
Try to make your website an authority in your niche. If your website is a site based on the whole sport of Soccer as a niche and contains four pages, you'll probably find that your site will not be ranked very well – if not at all.
As Google now favors authority sites, what does this mean for newcomers who are trying to compete with the big fish?
Using your favorite keyword tool, drum down into the niche you've selected or you're interested in and try to be an authority on the sub-niche of that category.
For example, instead of targeting a website that is generally about Soccer as a whole, drum down into the niche and select something which is far less competitive and that you'll easily be able to tackle as a whole with a website that might cover 20 – 100 pages of content for the whole sub-niche. For example, instead of Soccer, drum down into the niche and select Soccer> Kids Soccer (or if that is too competitive) > Kids Soccer Shoes.
Then develop a website based on the keywords and anything else that is relevant to "Kids Soccer Shoes" . By the end of your original content writing, with the title of the article you're writing about containing the keyword you'd like to target in the SERPs, your site should hopefully be an authority site in the field of your niche, and as long as it is good quality content, with minimal errors and good grammar, Google and other search engines will reward you with traffic.
Not only is the above technique good for real SEO, it'll support your site's longevity to stay in the highly in the SERPs, as long as your site and the articles it contains is relevant to the niche or sub-niche you've selected In the future, you can pretty much guarantee that your site will keep getting traffic from Google and other search engines for a long time to come.
This is really the only SEO practice that works, and as your site becomes trusted by the search engines, it'll compete very well with other authority sites, and future proof yourself from the nasty Google algorithm updates that so many webmasters that have fallen victim to through bad SEO practices.