fbpx

Can you explain what SEO actually is?

Apr 21, 2020 | Blog, SEO

Did you know our Director, Chris Nyland takes part in regular Digital Marketing podcast?

Himself and Ian Hooper from HitPublish come together to interview leaders in their fields, discovering more about their skills and experience in Digital Marketing.

This week they met up with Alan Ible of Dig-itel, Gloucester to dive into the deep world of Search Engine Optimisation.

This is a Q&A style blog, taken directly from the HitPublish podcast. To listen to the full episode, click: digital marketing podcast.

What actually is Search Engine Optimisation?


Ian | HitPublish

Okay, let’s, let’s get on with it. Well, straightaway for those who don’t know, insult people’s intelligence, that know all about SEO, but for those that don’t, can you explain to us and what SEO actually is?

Yeah. So I think the first thing to do when you explain something that doesn’t know is don’t call it search engine optimization, because then you get even more questions and people are really perplexed. Simply put, search engine optimization is being found online. Main search engines like Google, and predominantly underneath the paid adverts. So search engine optimization, climbed to the top of take like Google really, that’s what I would say.


Alan | Digitel


Chris | Nettl 

Yeah, getting caught up in Google absolutely. And I also explained it as well, that it kind of falls into two main categories. I think the first element is to do with relevance of the website itself, the content of the website. Is it useful to the user? Is it useful to Google? And then secondly, sort of authority. So how does Google then view your sites compared to others out there and your competition?

Yeah, I mean, when you were doing so about reviewing sites and competition, you there are several metrics either that people refer to one of them is trust flow. So I suppose the best way to consider your digital trust flow would be like the expression you are who you hang with.

So if you’re in a room and not really credible people, and they’re all vouching for you, that’s kind of like a digital Association, really. So if you’ve got lots of really strong, really credible sites out there all vouch for you, and your offline presence obviously becomes a lot more stronger by default in effect. And Chris, yeah, like you said about the onpage. If your website is optimized, good experience, then the main factors, although Google does update them. I think user experience is probably key right now.


Alan | Digitel


Ian | HitPublish

Yeah, that brings me on nicely, actually. Because sort of a question that we all hit in this room without a shadow of a doubt is, when we launch a new brand, or we launch a new website, we push it live, whatever the right terminology is. Usually the first question always is, yeah, you know, it’s coming. Why am I not on the top of page one on Google and Bing and the other search engines? Well, what why can’t I be seen? And? Alan can you tell us why that is?

 

Yeah, I mean, if you think about it, if we’re talking in regards to a brand new website, and a brand new domain, so you know, they’ve never existed before they haven’t started rescan of the site. They don’t exist today. So with Google being a credible search engine, or any other ones like Bing, or what have you, would they take a punt on a website that’s never existed before? And just go your website looks really nice. I’ll put you to the top. Is that pretty? You know, 


Alan | Digitel


Ian | HitPublish

I always push back when I asked a question. I always push back in the nicest possible way and say, Well, I think the question we should ask is, why should you be on page one of Google?

Yeah. I mean, you You would struggle to get any website to the top of Google relatively quickly. If it’s a new brand. I mean, the only way that it might get there is if the competition is really, really thin. Or you go for what we call a longtail keyword. So if I was looking for, I don’t know, a pair of shoes. So if I was to right size 12, black brogues, with a sketched spider on the front or something, I think you’d find it but if you just wrote shoes, and why on earth would Google put a brand new boy on the block versus all the other existing stuff, exactly that.


Alan | Digitel


Chris | Nettl 

I think I might throw in a top tip maybe at this point. You can tell whether you think this is a good idea or not. But what we often say to our clients when we’re building a website is because you know what web projects are like they can go on and on and you can take months sort of put in putting a website together and getting it launched.

To start that clock ticking of getting found in Google, it’s good to sort of get something up even if it’s like a holding page or something there live on the domain name to start that sort of domain authority clock ticking.

This is why I said you don’t dabble Chris because it’s a good bit of advice, thank you very much. So if you put a holding page up, you’ve got a domain name then. So as you’re doing the build, you can start directing traffic to it. So often you find website under maintenance new site coming soon, if Google can start to see room Rings and Things go on the background before it even goes live, or before you fully get it up and running, you’ve already brought the process forward. So a decent wireframe would always help with that, which is again something your very good at.


Alan | Digitel


Chris | Nettl 

Nice, nice. 

So you just mentioned domain authority there Alan, can you tell us a little bit more about that what that is and what that means?


Ian | HitPublish


Alan | Digitel

Of course, so domain authority is not as complex as it would be made out to be. So if you go online to any independent tool, like Moz or any of the other ones, it breaks it down simply into three categories. How old is a website? How big is a website? and how popular it is? So when you look at the size of a website, obviously, the deeper the pages, the more relevant the better, they should convert i.e, why Google wants them to be done and other search.

Popularity that’s all about when people land on the site. How do they engage with it? What sessions do they do? How long do they engage with individual pages. But the other angle of popularity, which often gets neglected, is actually the links that come in. So again, when you’re talking about a credible relationship, your popularity again is based on like the whole A group at school. So if you hang around with all the bad kids, the teacher is going to look at you a bit more.

The other one that no one can control is the age. So we haven’t got a TARDIS. Although we’re techy, we haven’t created a time machine yet. So the only thing that you can’t do with that one is obviously enhance its age. However, what some people do clever clogs out there, sometimes they’ll actually buy old domain names that have been around forever in a day that have expired, and they’ll actually buy those from, you know, bidding auction sites, so they’ve already got some age behind them.

Would that be considered a bit blackhat?


Ian | HitPublish


Alan | Digitel

It wouldn’t be considered blackhat. But to be honest, it’s probably a bit old school. So I think nowadays, you know, the whole buy domain with the, you know, the exact term within it or anything that is probably a bit old school. Yeah, it goes back to user grants again. Hence why popularity is key age incise. 

I think that rings true across the board with SEO is that ultimately playing by the rules and delivering to the user as opposed to delivering just to achieve results within search is going to do you better long term anyway? 

You know, can I Chuck a little top tip in? 


Ian | HitPublish


Chris | Nettl 

Yes, totally. We’re on some kind of tip off today

Everybody always goes, Google changes the rules. Everybody does. They don’t they never have. Google has never once changed any key rule at all. The core algorithms that they’ve got just get more intelligent. So if you gain the system and you try these black hat techniques, or as they refer to, you try and cheat it, you’re gonna get caught out eventually. Yeah. So ultimately, just do it right from the beginning. If it looks too good to be true, it’s too good. You’re going to get hit, you’re going to get taken down, yeah. Just create a brand that represents who you are, and do it properly.


Alan | Digitel


Chris | Nettl 

Ian, scrub that question, you’re going to ask about Google keep changing his algorithms. I think, I think They do obviously release lots of updates. Google does its various animal named updates. But I think as you said, it’s almost just getting a bit clever each time. And they’re kind of finding ways to keep you. Yeah. to suss out more of these dodgy around the edge techniques.

Yeah, I mean, they, they say that they’ve got these core algorithmic updates that go on, you know, talk about penguin or Pandora pigeon, or there’s a cuddly fluffy animals. But they don’t just do that they update almost daily, as well as hundreds or thousands of minor updates. But there are only a few key ones. And, you know, you just got to keep within them and ultimately stick to the rules stick to the rules.


Alan | Digitel

This article is an extract from the hitpublish podcast where Ian (Nous) and Chris (Nettl) discussed all things SEO together with Alan from Digi-tel. You can read other extracts from the hitpublish digital marketing podcast on SEO in these two articles, SEO v PPC v Social – what’s best? and Do Google keep moving the SEO Goalposts?

More blog posts…