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Search Engine Optimisation (SEO for short) is the process of getting web pages to show up in “search engines” like Google, Bing and Yahoo.
The job of an SEO is to increase the visibility of a website in organic search results, which also increases traffic to the target website.
Because there are over 3.5 billion searches per day on Google alone!
And those searches are made up of people from all around the world looking to-
- Learn more about a topic
- Solve a problem they have
- Learn how to do something
- Buy a product
These searches will be performed with keywords that relate to the topic of their search.
For example, someone interested in dog grooming may look for:
- Dog grooming near me
- Dog grooming in London
- Bio dog grooming shampoos
- How to groom my dog at home
- Cheap dog grooming brushes
The search engine they’ve chosen – in most cases Google – will then search its database.
And then return the most relevant pages for that keyword (I’ll explain how later)–
This is important to businesses and website owners.
Because if they’re offering a solution to the problem that is been searched for…
They have the chance to be seen by thousands of people who are interested in that topic.
If you owned a hardware store and your website was #1 for “Buy Power Tools”–
You would make a small fortune from power tool sales.
To put it simply:And that’s all there is to it!
What Will I Learn?
Why Do You Need SEO?
SEO increases traffic.
This means it’s important to get the webpages that you care about to show up for the right terms within a search engine.
This can expose your website to tens, hundreds or even thousands of new people (or customers) every day.
SEO is an incredible opportunity to grow a business/website and it’s revenue.
Take a look at this traffic report from my blog in June 2017.
Thanks to search engines I was able to attract 41,470 people to the site:
That’s almost 50% of my entire site traffic, and my biggest single source of it.
My site isn’t one of the biggest in the niche by a long shot.
But through targeted SEO I’m able to capture a lot of these searchers to come and visit me, not my competitors.
With a little SEO knowledge and know-how, you can really begin to see great results like this in even the most competitive of niches.
Here’s another example from my SEO Agency–
In just 7 months we were able to-
- Increase search traffic from 10,439 per month to 472,591 per month
- Secure 558 top 3 positons for search terms in Google
- Along with 1,501 top 10 positions
That resulted in a huge increase in revenue for the site.
Just by showing up for those more “relevant” search terms in a search engine.
If you’re not using SEO as part of your strategy to grow your business or website…
You’re missing out on thousands of people (and potentially dollars) every single month!
Is SEO Dead?
One of the main question we get asked in the industry is: Is SEO dead?
As with all marketing practices, once it becomes harder to get results, someone will eventually say that it is dead.
This creates a panic and a lot of doubt. So, let me ease those two ailments for you.
As long as people need search engines and websites need visitors…
SEO will be an effective practice.
But there are a few things worth understanding to help qualify that statement.
Firstly, SEO is becoming more and more competitive.
It’s easy to create a website and take a business or idea online. That means there are more and more people trying to rank for the same keywords-
It also means there are more people using SEO practices to help them get there.
Secondly, the landscape of SEO is always changing.
Search engines like Google, are constantly changing their algorithms to make them more effective and to provide a better service.
There are also new types of searches – like voice search – which will change how we approach SEO.
These two factors point to a thriving SEO industry that is more important than ever before.
Want to start SEO this year? Check out my 45+ steps SEO checklist to build a solid SEO foundation that both humans and Google love.
How Much Does SEO Cost?
SEO doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. (Check out my SEO pricing guide to see how much does SEO cost).
Most basic SEO techniques can be done without spending a penny by using free SEO tools for keyword research, link building and site optimisation.
However, it is advisable to invest in SEO tools to help you perform better research, measure progress and steal what’s working for your competitors.
If you choose to take the DIY approach, you can use tools like:
- SEMRush (read my full SEMRush review)
- Ahrefs (my Ahrefs review)
…to accelerate your results.
Not sure which tool to choose? Consult my Ahrefs vs Semrush blog post.
Otherwise, you could hire an agency to do the hard work for you.
My agency pricing starts from $2,500 per month depending on the clients business goals.
How Long Does It Take To See SEO Results?
You will typically start seeing results from SEO within the first 4 weeks but there isn’t really a right or wrong answer to this question.
However, at the very least you should expect to see positive movement in rankings and search visibility within the first few weeks.
If you don’t – something might be wrong.
There are lots of factors that going into deciding how quick you will see results from SEO such as-
- The keyword you’re trying to rank for
- The competitiveness of the niche
- The age of your site
- What your competition is doing (if anything)
- The search engine you’re trying to rank in
- The area and location you’re trying to rank
This means that the level of difficulty can fluctuate and the amount of time it might take.
But if your desired result is to rank on the first page for a competitive keyword…
That could take a lot longer.
Ahrefs found that for most keywords your site needs to be at least one year old-
However your results can (and almost certainly will) vary, due to all of the factors above.
So don’t let this information put you off because once you get the SEO ball rolling…
It very quickly snowballs!
Wrapping It Up
So now you know exactly what SEO is, why you need SEO and what it can do for you.
Let’s quickly recap everything you’ve just been through:
- SEO is the process of getting a website seen by the right people in a search engine
- SEO is the most effective ways of finding new business, customers and traffic
- An increase in search traffic is often closely linked to an increase in overall revenue
- Around 50% of my own personal traffic comes from search engines
- SEO is not dead and is a thriving industry, although it’s a little more competitive
- The amount of time it takes to see results depends on lots of different factors
And how can you take advantage of them to increase traffic?
Well, you have three options:
- You can go through my list of SEO Presentations
- You can check out my list of SEO books
- You can learn how search engines work
“””This is a really good write up . I loved it .
Excellent article . Keep up the good work
Thank you. Glad it was helpful!
Awesome info! explained all the things about SEO. It is really very useful. Thanks for sharing.
No problem. Glad it was helpful!
Thank you for this wonderful post. As i am going to start a online business and i think SEO will help me lot in terms of sales and marketing.
Good luck with your project, Michael!
Hi, your post is really comprehensive, thanks for sharing. I appreciate your encouragement and ideas, and look forward to renewing my efforts to engage my readers too. We want to offer explosive event production services for all of our event agency clients without losing our butler-like touch for our business and residential solutions, For more just visit us now!!
No problem! Hope it works for you!
its a very gud informations
It’s a full value-packed SEO tutorial for beginners. After reading this post, I understood what is SEO! It’s very complicated to learn SEO by video but this article makes it easy to learn SEO.
I think everyone should read this article.
Thank you Sir for writing a valuable SEO tutorial for us!
Thank you, Gaurav! I am glad you found it helpful!
Thanks for sharing this great content. Please keep posting on local seo
Hey, If you’re interested in local SEO, check this out: https://www.matthewwoodward.co.uk/seo/local-seo-guide/
thank you sir, i have a website i am trying many days before to grow.i am read your airticle its help me many
Pleased I could help Saiful!
Very helpful guide thank u for sharing
No worries – glad I could help Zohaib
Excellent write up and wonderful describe. Your post is very helpful for me. A big thanks for sharing !!
Thanks, Matthew. Now I feel That If I follow you I will become a good SEO Expert.
Stick with me :)
You are wonderful, Mathew – you teach us free and then pay us as well. Thanks
Glad I could help Ramesh – happy ranking :)
This is quite informative and straight to the point. I have read a number of articles on SEO, but none puts it as simple as you do. Thanks
It is a very useful and valuable article thanks for this
Happy to help Varun.
Very nice your article and described all the information for supporting the new digital marketers. thankyou
Glad I could help Andrew
Thank you for sharing it.
No problem – hope you got a good introduction to SEO.
SEO is the best way to get traffic for a long time period. Many people have heard a lot of things about SEO, but they are not aware of all the things or all the processes. Thanks for the post. You have explained it nicely.
Happy to help.
Nice article and great info. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Hope it helped give you the baseline for your SEO journey :)
thanks for giving us more then basic info of seo
You gotta start somewhere
Thank You for giving such golden piece of advice. Really helps a beginner like me. The examples make it a lot more easier to understand.
No problem – the content was designed with beginners in mind so I’m glad it was helpful :)
Your content and your blog are inspiring. Thank you for providing so much free knowledge. I’m just getting started with SEO but I’ve already learned tons.
I also read every one of your income reports, fascinating to see the blog grow and what worked and didn’t. Thanks!
Hey Doug, thanks very much and welcome to the world of SEO!
wow great wonderful information and very helpful.
Thanks Shopia! Hope you found the post useful.
I am new in blogging. and I am following the matthewwoodward blog from 3 months.
Welcome to the world of blogging!
Hey Matthew, I`m very passionate about SEO. This article helps me to understand the basics of SEO. the way you describe is very interactive. Thanks
No worries Anshul, sometimes it’s good practice to go back to basics!
THE WAY YOU DESCRIBE SEO IS VERY AWESOME
Cheers Akash – Hope you found this guide helpful :)