Looking for learning Search engine optimization in 2021? Or want your website to rank on top of the search engines like Google? Well, this guide will help you to make this possible!
Hello guys! My name is Awais Ali. I am a professional search engine optimization expert and an ardent web developer as well as a newbie blogger. I have been writing this guide based on my personal and professional experience to get started with SEO in 2021. This guide is highly recommended for people who are newbies and want to learn Search engine optimization or want their website to be on the first page of search engines. When I use the term search engine, it always refers to be Google hence it dominates over 90% of the search engines’ market share and in this guide, we will be learning how we can optimize websites for Google. It is a huge checkmate for your competitors if your website dominates the first pages of Google.
So, let’s dive into it and learn with me how you can master search engine optimization in 2021.
What is Search Engine Optimization?
Search engine optimization is a process or the set of strategies webmasters perform on their websites in order to get better organic and non-paid permanent results on the search engines for a certain set of keywords. This may contain ethical and up-to-date strategies which usually work great if they are applying and implementing constantly.
Search Engine Optimization is a slow and lengthy process, hence there is no surety that the website will rank within a week, a month, a year, or a decade. JUST KIDDING FOR THE DECADE! 😀. But, if you constantly apply all the ethical activities from this guide or Google’s search engine optimization documentation, you are likely to get some impressive results over time. In this guide, you are going to learn the strategies and the trends that are worthy to learn in 2021.
What is Search Intent?
Search intent often refers to be user intent which means what users are searching for on the web. Google identifies users’ intent through the queries entered in the search bar often called keywords.
For Example, A user searches for a query “Football Match”, this means to be that he or she is looking for a live Football match or the Football match schedule. Google identifies its users’ intent based on their past history, what people are looking for at the time and thousands of ranking algorithms.
Why Choose SEO?
Search engine optimization is a great source for gaining relevant and organic traffic on a website and making engagements for online businesses. We all have passed some really difficult times for more than a year because of COVID-19. Back in 2020, because of the virus, a huge ratio of businesses had to face a massive crisis.
Webinterpret states that online buyers have reached 2.14 billion worldwide, and the orders increased by 60% throughout COVID-19.
Comparing SEM/SMM with SEO
There are many terms in Digital Marketing that can give you some great engagements for the time being. SEM (Search Engine Marketing), and SMM (Social Media Marketing) are some great ways to make your business gain engagements. Also, they are paid and temporary services. Talking about SEO, it provides you non-paid, permanent results that may help your brand grow well.
Search Engine Optimization Types
On-Page search engine optimization is the set of activities that we apply on the website in order to optimize pages according to Google’s algorithms. Google constantly updates its algorithms to provide users a great user experience.
Off-Page search engine optimization term is about the activities we perform outside of a website. Off-Page contains Link building, social media management, and much more. The more quality links you have, the more chances you will have to dominate over your competitors.
Read more about Off-page SEO at MOZ Off-Page SEO Guide.
Technical Search engine optimization is all about the technical stuff which contains website development, website speed, website structure, performance, and how the users are interacting with each and individual page. Technical SEO has been a really important factor for a website SEO lifecycle in 2021 because of Google’s persistent updates.
SEO Ranking Factors:
Here we go with some of the important ranking factors:
- Backlinks Quality
- CTR – Click Through Rate
- Domain Age
- Quality of Content
- Website Speed
- Core Web Vitals
- Cross-Device Usage (Mobile Responsiveness)
- EAT – Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness
Search Engine Optimization Ethics
White Hat SEO:
White Hat Search engine optimization is the set of ethical techniques applied accordingly to Google’s guidelines and recommendations. White Hat techniques make an uneasy and slow process, but will worth over the time once your website is fully optimized.
Black Hat SEO:
Black Hat Search engine optimization techniques are characteristics of unethical activities used to make quick results not following Google’s Guidelines. These may not be permanent results and can risk your website being deleted from Google’s index forever.
Below are some example for Black Hat VS White Hat SEO
Also, Read My Blog to Promote an Online Business in 2021.
Facts and Stats
Is Google Really a Gem?
Before going ahead, is Google the search engine we should optimize our website for? See the picture for Search engines’ market share.
According to WebFX, Google leads the search engine market share by 91.54% of margin which should be enough for something to go with. The good news is: this might increase over time!
How Search Works?
Google uses automated programs called website crawlers or website spiders. These programs use to crawl the World Wide Web constantly on the daily basis. They find out new websites and web pages to save them into Google’s Index. Google Index is like a gigantic library containing billions of websites and webpages crawled by Crawlers and submitted by users.
There are 3 Essential Steps for Google Search:
Crawling: Google uses its automated web crawlers to crawl all over the web and find out new pages and updates. Crawlers list these page URLs (Universal Resource Locator) in the queue to scan or crawl the pages later. Pages could be found following the hyperlinks pointing to another page from a web page.
Indexing: After the crawling process is done, Google goes for indexing the pages. Google uses to analyze the page content, images, videos, and sufficiency of Algorithms in order to understand what the page is about.
Picking up the results: The results are served after the crawling and indexing methods are done. When a user searches for a query, Google tries to provide the best result available in its index. Google picks the results based on a user’s location, past history, search intent, and search trends.
This is the basic Lifecycle of how search works in Google.
Important Google Algorithms
There are many of the Algorithms Google has introduced to optimize its user experience. I have listed some of the important Algorithms you should know about.
Panda Algorithms was released in Feb 2011 to deprecate webmasters to make duplicate, plagiarized, and thin content.
Penguin Update was released in Apr 2012 to object spammy, and over-optimized hyper-text. Its intent was to down-rank the websites having unnatural-looking backlinks.
Aug 2013 released Algorithm update Humming Bird was programmed for detecting keyword stuffing and low-quality content from a website, which was a major mess in those times.
In Apr 2015, Mobile Algorithm was a huge change in website usability. Mobile Algorithm makes sure if the website is fully mobile responsive and all the mobile users can access the website.
Oct 2019 released BERT Algorithm uses language processing technologies to understand the search query and identifies the intention behind the content. It detects the poorly written content, lack of focus, and lack of context.
Google Core Update:
Back in 2017, Google announced their Core update which contains all the parameters of previously programmed Algorithms.
On-Page Search Engine Optimization Strategies:
As we have previously learned about what is On-Page SEO. Let’s see what are the basics On-page strategies we can go for?
Use the following On-Page strategies for optimizing your website:
- Keyword Research
- Title and Description
- Quality Content
- Media Optimization
- URL Structure
- Internal / External Linking
- Page Speed Optimization
- Structured Data Optimization
- CTR / CTA
- Sitemap.xml & Robots.txt Files
- Website Monitorization
These are some of the basic On-Page strategies you can look for in 2021. You can try plenty of On-page strategies to fully optimize your website for Google Algorithms.
Off-Page Search Engine Optimization Strategies:
Off-Page SEO has still a lot of worth for the new websites as well as the websites are ranking already. You can make quality backlinks to optimize your website authority. Having said that, some superb quality backlinks pointing to your website can provide you a lot of great benefits.
Below are some Off-Page activities you can easily learn and apply:
- Business Profiles / Listing
- Forum Submissions
- Blog Commenting
- Web 2.0 Submission
- Guest Blogging
- Broken Link Building
- Q&A Sessions
- Influencers Outreach
- Infographics Sharing
- Email Outreach
- Tiered Linking
You can make a lot of backlinks using the following strategies, but all it matters when they are up to the quality. I would highly suggest you have quality backlinks over the quantity links 🙂
Search Engine Optimization is a great source for your website or online business. But at the end of the day, Google is an Artificial Intelligent system that will respond to you according to how it is programmed. You can use hundreds of other Search engine optimization activities suite and rank your website.
I hope you enjoyed reading this basic SEO guide for 2021. Please share your views and thoughts on what do you think about SEO. Also, share this guide with your friends and community if you feel this can help them learn.
Thank you so much for reading! Would see you in the next blog 😉
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