What does SEO actually mean?

What does SEO actually mean?

SEO is a process of optimising your website, both on and off-page, to attract relevant visitors who are searching for the products and services you ofer by using the likes of Google, Bing and Yahoo. It’s quite a dry topic but can have a huge impact on your business success. 

Many people believe that SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is just a fancy term for inputting keywords, crossing your fingers and hoping that you’ll appear in search results. Unfortunately, it is much more complicated than that. 


At Catalyst we carry out regular tasks to ensure your website performs highly in search rankings and that your SEO interlinks with other campaigns that you run, providing you with an all-round marketing strategy.


There are various reports that we can create regarding different areas of the SEO campaign such as crawl diagnostics, keyword and link analysis but here are some of the basic areas that we target:


On-page optimisation tasks:


1. Create good navigation links – this is where we make sure the customer journey is simple, easy and smooth when they get to your website. Knowing what to do and where to go next once a visitor has landed on your page is crucial to whether they invest their time or go to the next ranking result.


2. Make content relevant and descriptive – when you appear in search results, you see big titles followed by snippets of description, which varies on each search query, you are matched to. We make sure every page on the website has keyword-targeted, informative meta descriptions and titles.


3. Optimise your core content – every page should be informative, engaging and have the right amount of related keywords – too many can appear spammy but too few won’t get you noticed by search engines.

Off-page optimisation tasks:


1. Increase EILs (external inbound links) – get listed on local search engines, directories, share links through social media etc. The more external links and listings you can have, the more likely potential customers are going to find you. Review sites are also great if they relate to your business but keep an eye on what people are saying so you can respond where necessary.


2. Social media presence is key – if you want to increase brand awareness, EILs and testimonials, then social is a great place to go. Remember you are there to provide solutions and it’s not somewhere to hard sell so follow the 1:3 rule. For every sales-related post (with a link to the website!) you should have one conversation/retweet, one generic update (e.g. FollowFriday) and one news-related update. Using keywords in your posts is also beneficial. And don’t forget hashtags so other twitter users can find you when searching for a topic, trend of thread.


General rules of basic optimisation is to have no more than 100 links per page, keep the website architecture no more than 3 levels deep to avoid confusing navigation and link your important pages from the homepage using descriptive anchor text. Lastly, every page title should be unique, descriptive, less than 70 characters long and contain the target keyword (preferably near the beginning).


Google changes its algorithms regularly but links are still the most important external factor in where you sit in the ranks. Your links should be completely organic, there are no quick wins regardless of your budget. Quick-fix tactics aren’t sustainable and can cause Google’s Webspam team to blacklist your site.