We’ve talked in previous blogs about the key features of a well-designed website and the important role that a website plays in marketing your property business. However, this is just one piece of the jigsaw when it comes to getting found online. Appearing in Google’s search results when someone does an internet search isn’t something that just happens once your website goes live. In fact, it can take considerable time, effort and focus to make sure you appear on page one of Google for relevant search terms. The process that makes the magic happen is called Search Engine Optimisation or SEO. But what is search engine optimisation and how does it work?
Search engine optimisation is the practice of ensuring a website can be found in search engines for words and phrases that people might search for and that are relevant to what the website is offering. Essentially the aim is to increase the quantity and quality of your organic (unpaid) website visitors by appearing as high as possible in the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).
SEO involves making changes to your website design and content to make it easier for search engines to understand what each page of your website is about and give you a better opportunity to be listed in search results when someone is looking for products, services or content that you offer.
Smaller business owners can sometimes feel a little intimidated by the jargon and terminology associated with this area of marketing but it doesn’t have to be this way. While there are many factors that may influence your ranking, the basic process for giving your website the opportunity to rank well for targeted searches isn’t as difficult as you might think. To help you understand what search engine optimisation is, we’ll explain in layman’s terms how it all works.
Google and other search engines want to deliver the most relevant results to specific website searches. To help them do this they ‘crawl’ website pages to try and understand what they are about. They use the information that they find in these crawls to determine whether your web page is relevant for specific search words and phrases, often referred to as keywords.
They also look at factors such as whether your website can be read on different devices, often referred to as mobile-friendly or mobile-responsive websites, as well as how easy it is to navigate your site and generally reward user-friendly websites with higher rankings in the SERPs. So what is search engine optimisation and how do you go about improving your chances of ranking well?
Let’s say you had written a blog article about the top tourist attractions in your area, you would want this article to show up for anyone who was searching for the term ‘top tourist attractions in xxx’ (insert your own location). In order to do have the best opportunity for this to happen, there are a few basic elements that need to be in place for the search engines to understand your content. These are called on-page SEO factors. There are also other factors that influence your websites ability to rank well which are referred to as off-page SEO factors. Basically, search engine optimisation is the process of managing all of these factors to give yourself the best opportunity to be found on Google.
One of the reasons that search engine optimisation can be perceived as being complex is because of the constantly changing Google algorithm. Every year, Google makes thousands of changes to its algorithm. In fact, according to the SEO software developer, Moz, in 2018 alone Google made 3,234 updates — an average of almost 9 per day, and more than 8 times the number of updates in 2009. Each update has the potential to impact the rankings of a website and where they appear in the search listings.
The other important factor to consider is how few searchers click beyond page one of Google. Another startling statistic from SEO audit software developer ahrefs.com is that 91% of all content gets no traffic from Google. It’s also estimated that the first page of Google captures anywhere between 71% and 92% of all clicks. It’s important to remember that the statistics will vary depending on the keyword term used. However, what it does highlight is that knowing the best practice approach to search engine optimisation can stand you in good stead to be amongst the 9% of web pages that do get clicks.
The key to being successful with your search engine optimisation efforts is getting the basics right, being consistent in your approach and applying Google’s best practice guidelines.
Now that we understand what search engine optimisation is, in our next blog we will go through how SEO works and some tips on the best practice approach so that you can begin the process of getting your website in front of more of the right searchers and increase your direct bookings.
In the meantime, if you need support creating a high-converting, mobile responsive website ready to be search engine optimised, take a moment to complete the form below and one our our friendly staff will contact you shortly. HiRUM’s website design team have developed a superb reputation for building beautiful, high-converting, mobile responsive websites for clients in the hospitality industry. We can help you with the photography and copywriting to ensure the very best experience for your website visitors. As well as our market-leading booking engine, we can help you manage all aspects of your property or hotel marketing, from your social media presence to your Google listings.
HiRUM had support in developing the content of this article from Brisbane Small Business Marketing.