This is a familiar image that most of us see everyday.
When you type a search query into Google, how do those results come so fast?
More importantly, what came up when you searched today?
Search engines do not crawl the web in real time, they categorize web pages in their index for easy retrieval
Like a library of all known information on the web
And instead of walking in, all you have to do is type
How do they do this…a mathematical algorithm (next slide)
Google Over 200 “ranking factors” help to decide where your site ranks Roughly 10,000 sub-factors Bing Fewer ranking factors in algorithm Heavy reliance on social factors
Search engines use a mathematical algorithm to serve up search results for any given query. They have to, because any given day, 15% of all searches have never been searched before That means that of the 3.5 billion queries that happen on Google, 525 million of them are brand new. There are over x factors that influence the algorithm, but let’s focus on the top ones…. Keep in mind that it is always changing….
Data as of April 2015 Everyone else: AOL, Ask Jeeves
Organic results compete with paid and image results Organic results are typically more trusted than ads That’s why the top organic results are so valuable
In this step we’re really looking at making your site accessible Here are some things to avoid What happens when you have unnecessary road blocks for search engines?
The XML sitemap is like the directory for your website.
Search Engines use this like we use the directory in an office building – to more efficiently find what they are looking for.
Search engines want to stay in business – to do so they need people coming back. To be people coming back they need to provide the best answers to questions.
A shady link may be one that looks completely unnatural or comes from a totally unrelated site Search engines have filters that take the quality of links into account and tend to serve up pages with a trusted backlink profile Too many shady links can result in a penalty from Google so it’s best to just build links organically from providing the best content
SEO-101: How to drive productive organic website traffic
| SEO 101 1
| SEO 101 2
• What to expect today
• How search engines work
• What is SEO?
• Foundational SEO
• On and off page basics
| SEO 101 3
Sr. SEO Strategist
| SEO 101 5
Search Engine Optimization
79% of search engine users say they
always/frequently click on the natural search
| SEO 101 6
Anatomy of a SERP (Search Engine Results Page)
Ads / Shopping
Local / Map
| SEO 101 7
• Organic traffic accounts for up to 64% of
all website traffic*
• Roughly 52,000 search queries happen
on Google - every SECOND!
• This translates into about 4.5 billion
searches every day**
Organic Search Stats
* Source: http://searchenginewatch.com/sew/study/2355020/organic-search-accounts-for-up-to-64-of-website-traffic-study
** Source: http://www.internetlivestats.com/one-second/#google-band
| SEO 101 8
Organic Search is the #1 Driver of
From a usage perspective, new studies have found
that organic search drives up to 64% of all web
| SEO 101 9
Click Through Rate Study for Organic Results
• On average, the click-through rate (CTR) on page one is 71.33%
• On the first page alone, the first 5 results receive a CTR of 67.60%
• Page two and three total CTR is only 5.59%
Page 1 = 71.33%
| SEO 101 10
Does SEO Really Matter?
If you are not optimizing for search you are
already behind your competition.
| SEO 101 11
What to Expect:
• A solid understanding of how search
• Learn how to beat out your competition in
the search engine results
• Actionable tactics you can implement
• Tools to implement SEO
| SEO 101 20
Not all results are organic
| SEO 101 21
What is SEO?
Search engine optimization
(SEO) is the process of affecting
the visibility of a website or a web
page in a search engine's
"natural" or un-paid ("organic")
| SEO 101 22
What is SEO? (Simplified)
SEO is two things:
1. The practice of making your website as
accessible as possible to search engines.
2. Ensuring your website is as useful and
relevant as possible to your current and
| Red Wing Shoes | SEO 101 29
Technical and Structural Factors
• Goal: Ensure accessibility for Search
Engines & Users
• Foundation of your entire online
presence, so it’s important to get it right
• Search engines have very clear
guidelines for webmasters to follow when
| SEO 101 30
What To Look For
• Can your entire website be crawled?
• Is your website indexed by the search
• Does your website have any errors?
• Is your page load time too slow?
| SEO 101 31
How You Can Do This
• XML sitemap
• Accurate robots.txt file
• Google Search Console
• Page speed optimization
| SEO 101 32
What to Avoid
Any unnecessary hurdle for the search
• Blocking search engines in robots.txt file
| SEO 101 33
Example: Blocking Search Engines
| SEO 101 34
The robots.txt file is a directive for all “bots”
visiting your site.
• It tells them what URLs to crawl or not
• Simple text file – can be created with
| SEO 101 35
Robots.txt file – *Pro Tip
tool in Google
errors in you file
and to test
| SEO 101 36
The XML sitemap is a map of your website
that enables search engines to efficiently
crawl and index your site.
| SEO 101 37
Various tools can help you generate an
accurate and up-to-date sitemap:
• Screaming Frog Spider
• CMS plugins like Yoast
• Other web-based sitemap generators
| SEO 101 38
Google Search Console
Google Search Console (formerly Google
Webmaster Tools) is a free resource with tons of
valuable information available to all website owners.
| SEO 101 39
Why Does Speed Matter?
Last year, mobile search overtook desktop search.
• The gap between mobile and desktop will widen
• Fast page load speed is critical to optimizing for
| SEO 101 40
Google PageSpeed Insights
PageSpeed Insights is another free tool from
Google that gives you a prioritized roadmap on how
to fix speed issues on your site.
| Red Wing Shoes | SEO 101 42
On and Off Page Factors
• Goal: Demonstrate Relevance and
• Search engines want to provide users with
search results that are relevant to their
query and authoritative in nature.
• Building upon a sound technical structure,
we make sure that search engines and
users are able to fully understand what
various pages on your website are about.
| SEO 101 43
On-page SEO refers to
factors that you can
control directly on your
Examples of on-page
• Internal links
• Technical / Structural
Off-page SEO refers to
factors “out of your
control” on other websites
Examples of off-page
• Inbound links
• Social Media
• Local Directories
On-Page vs. Off-Page SEO
| SEO 101 44
What To Look For
• Are your on page elements optimized?
• What keywords are you ranking for?
• Who is linking to you?
• Who is linking to your competitors?
| SEO 101 45
On Page SEO Elements
• Page Title
• H1 heading
• H2 headings
• Meta Description
• Page Copy
• Alternative image text
| SEO 101 46
On Page SEO Elements
Page Title: Unique
and readable by
both humans and
topics of the page
Alt Image Text:
| SEO 101 47
Organic Result #1
Organic Result #32
| SEO 101 48
Organic Result #9
Organic Result #94
| SEO 101 49
On Page SEO Elements
| SEO 101 50
A Tale of Two Devices
| SEO 101 51
A Tale of Two Devices
| SEO 101 52
What Keywords Do You Rank For?
1. Don’t “Google yourself”
2. Use a keyword tracking tool
- SEM Rush (freemium)
- Bright Local (paid)
| SEO 101 54
Off Page SEO Elements
• Link anchor text
• Citations or Mentions
| SEO 101 55
Internal vs. External Links (Backlinks)
• Internal links refer
to links within your
site, such as
• External links refer
to links outside of
your site, such as a
link from Wikipedia.
• Both are very
useful, but for
| SEO 101 56
How do Backlinks Help?
• Backlinks act as
“votes” for pages on
• Generally speaking,
the more links you
sources, the more
your site is trusted,
and the better your
pages will rank.
| SEO 101 57
Link Anchor Text
The words used in the anchor text of a link
to your site helps search engines
understand what that page is about.
So, if your site is about “strollers” the anchor
text strollers would be preferable over click
| SEO 101 58
Who is linking to you?
Conduct a backlink
• Open your Google
• Navigate to the “Links
to Your Site” section
• Check out who links
the most and to what
• *Pro Tip: this will help
| SEO 101 59
Who is linking to your competitors?
Conduct a competitive link analysis:
1. Use Open Site Explorer
2. Enter your competitor’s site into the search bar
3. Dig through their backlink profile
4. *Pro Tip: Identify where you can acquire some
of the same links!
| SEO 101 60
Citations are essentially a mention of your
brand on another site like a listing directory.
• Hot Frog
• City Search
| SEO 101 61
It is important that these listings maintain
consistency and accuracy.
• Phone Number
*Check up on your listings using Moz Local
| SEO 101 67
1. Google Search Console
2. Google PageSpeed Insights
3. Screaming Frog SEO Spider
4. Yoast plugin for WordPress
5. XML Sitemap Generator
6. SEM Rush
7. Bright Local
8. Open Site Explorer
9. Moz Local
Appendix – Tools Mentioned