What you need to know about SEO and Google ranking

What is SEO

SEO stand for Search Engine Optimization. It is the practice or discipline of improving website relevance to make it rank (showed up) in the Search Engine (e.g Google, Bing) top search results, at the same time, increase organic traffic (traffic means people or visitors to a website) to a website. It is the number 1 proven and cost effective method of generating organic traffic to a website, which make it vital to the success of any business with online presence. SEO make organic traffic to be reliable, less expensive, and long-term. People searching for a website on the Search Engine are called searchers.

Importance of SEO

Competitive advantage: When a business website always feature at the top of the Search Engine result, such business has high competitive edge against their competitors as they would always be the first to be seen by prospects.

Best ROI: Working SEO allow people to easily see business product and services when related keywords are searched.

Lasting Result: Organic traffic via SEO is permanent, reliable, and continuous once a business website start ranking.

SEO Online trainiing

Components of SEO (Search ecosystem)

The 3 main components of SEO are:

User: These are people around the world searching the internet for businesses, solution, products, services, etc.

Search Engine (SE):  This is the technology itself. These are internet tools designed for scanning (searching) the internet for websites. The most popular one is Google. Others are Yahoo, Bing. There are search dominated in some other countries, e.g., Baidu- used in China, Yadex- used in Russia, Naver- used in South-Korea, Qwant- used in France and Germany, etc. There are other minor SE that are subject specific, e.g, Wolfram Alph used for computational and complex mathematics, Ask.com, and so on. Google is the best of all because they respond faster and deliver better result.

SEO: This can be classified into two; Search Engine Optimization-this is the discipline itself and we have Search engine Optimizer which is the profession.

How Search Engines work (online search mechanism)

Do you know? When you perform a search, the result you see are not live. They are copies of websites on SE database. Because Search Engine make copy of all the website they find on the internet, store these websites, and run algorithm against the storage. This is the reason you must first ensure that the SE is able to find your website, so it can be downloaded their database for ranking. A SEO professional must understand this process.

Search Engine process

SE process is divided into four categories: crawling, storing, processing and indexing, and ranking.


Crawler is a Search Engine software that goes (crawl) to every website on the internet to download all their contents back to the SE server. It follow all links on every web page down to their root. Crawlers do not touch website protected files like login pages or password protected pages.


The downloaded web pages by the crawler are stored in the SE server, so that SE now have copy of every website.

Processing and indexing

This is where the algorithm take place to “fish out” worthy contents . It is the vault of the SE. Parameters for contents selection process is only know by scientists working with the search engine company. But some of the considered factors when indexing a website are: outbound and inbound links, content structures (headings and arrangement), published date and other trust factors.


Getting relevant results and present it to the searcher

Basis of success with SEO

To be successful with SEO, you must:

-Develop a website that can be downloaded, and processed by the SE (the architecture of the site).

-Develop links that reflect popularity of your site with other site and sources, also have links from popular site back to your site (one of the algorithm ranking factors).

-Develop contents people want to read and share; contents relevant to people’s searches.

What is SEO Hats

SEO Hats referred to different techniques or methods used by SEO professionals to optimize a website. There are 3 different types of SEO Hats; White Hat, Black Hat, and Gray Hat.

Types of SEO Hat

White Hat

White Hat refer to techniques or practices of SEO that are in compliance with Google Webmaster guideline or any other SE guideline to optimize a site. White Hat methods of optimization do not attempt manipulating or go against SE algorithm via techniques like falsified backlinks, doorway pages (redirect humans to web page different from the published one on SE) and so on.

One of the main benefits of white hat is security. Because you are always confident with this method of optimization as there is no fear of getting penalized. Also, you would  earn clients trust. This method may take longer to get desire results, but the reward is worth it- low risk, high reward.

Black Hat

Black Hat techniques are directly opposite White Hat. They are techniques not in compliance with the SE web master guideline. Black hats use tactics orchestrated to deceive and trick SE algorithm to achieve SEO results, i.e., illegitimate optimization techniques for false relevance such as cloaking, false redirect, doorway paging, hidden text/link, content scraping, and abuse of rich snippet.

Black Hat is a way to quick result, increased traffic resulting to more visitors in a short time, but very risky as the consequence can be disastrous when caught. All effort can vanish in no time. Moreover, no peace of mind with black Hat method; fear of getting caught all the time.

Gray Hat

Gray hats employ questionable tactics in SEO, i.e., tactics not explainable in the webmaster guideline. This include buying of positive reviews, blog comment spam, keyword stuffing, and so on. Gray Hat usually target competitors to frustrate users experience and stain integrity. Some of the tactics focus on SE not users, so there might be penalty, which can affect sales and lead if caught.

SEO Spamming

SEO spam are practices that violate SE policy. It is an attempt of creating false relevance for content, links, or programming for a website.

Form of SEO spam

1. Falsified content: This is the duplication of content for false relevance. Example is keyword stuffing; using a keyword over and over again  on a site in order to increase its relevance of a content. Such technique would be marked for over optimization.

Another examples are content scraping, thin or shallow content. Content scraping is copying contents for another site to form your own content or direct copy and paste.  Thin or shallow content is using the same content in different locations or countries so as to rank in those locations.

Also, unregulated spam comment can make a site fall victim of reduced SEO score.

2. Falsified links: Manipulating links for to gain relevance.  This is using link networks or buying backlinks to inflate site relevance or influence when there is no relationship between those backlinks and the site

3. Falsified web content: This is when a web page redirect users to another page completely different from the original page promised by the SE. It is called doorway pages. It is achieved through programming technique. Other example is a malicious intended web page or content (like phishing) to trick users to divulge their vital information (credit card number, password) or spread viruses.

SEO best practices

1. Do not hide content: I see many blogs ranking on Google just by having high value content, not because their owners know SEO. Do not hide keywords in text like having white color font on white background.

Stuffing of keywords in area seeing by human but hidden from SE bot is another wrong practice. These are all against best practices, they are old ways of falsifying relevance and such site can be penalized or totally eliminated.

2. Optimized Snippet: Snippet is what searchers first in the Google search results. It usually contain page title, URL, and meta description tag.

Google snippet sample

Ensure using title a searcher would see on the content page as the tile tag. Use short readable sentence in your meta description (summary of search result). Repeating keyword would not communicate value effectively.

3. Prominent headings: Proper layout of content by appropriately using headings (H1, H2, H3…) where necessary do increase SEO score. It make reading smooth. H1 is for the title. Only the title can use H1 while H2, H3 are further explanation. The headings tell the SE which content are most important. It allow SE to easily scan through your content the same way users can easily locate information on a page. Moreover, avoid long paragraphing; make your paragraph short.

4. Organized hierarchy: When designing or optimizing a website, make the hierarchy clear. i.e., be consistent with the context of words used in your site structure. For instance, a site selling shoe should break down shoes into men shoe, women shoe, adult shoe, children shoe and so on. This make indexing in SE easier and improve SEO score. In this way, people can easily find what they want on your site.

The Importance of Website Hierarchy for SEO by Alex G @ThoughtShiftUK  :ThoughtShift
Source: https://www.thoughtshift.co.uk/the-importance-of-website-hierarchy-for-seo/

5. Practical links: Links are fundamental part of the internet. Let your inbound and outbound link be relevant to where you are directing users. Do not use “Click here” as it often break context.  Instead, embed/blend links into lines in the content. Also, do not overuse links all over your content page, else you can be penalize for over optimization. Let your linking be contextually relevant.

Linking best practice

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