SEO can be difficult for beginners and professionals. Being familiar with the ins and outs of everything search engine optimization related can save you time and energy. Whereas, using best practices from the beginning can ensure that a website has a strong foundation to build on for years to come. In this article we set out to answer the 50 most common SEO FAQ .
The SEO FAQ are in alphabetical order and contain all frequently asked SEO related questions:
1. Are internal links good for SEO?
Internal links are good for SEO as they help Google navigate and understand your website. Moreover, they provide a means for website visitors to navigate throughout your website and gather more information regarding their search query. In terms of SEO internal links allow ‘link juice’ to pass throughout your website, with the link value flowing to your pages that are at the top of your website’s architectural hierarchy.
To get the most out of your internal links, make sure to set up an interlinking strategy in order to structure your website correctly. Additionally, make sure to use exact match anchor text whenever possible for your internal links.
2. Are SEO and SEM the same thing?
SEO and SEM are not the same thing. SEO is an overarching term that includes SEM in it. Whereas, SEO focuses on optimizing websites to increase rankings, and organic traffic. SEM, focuses on acquiring traffic from paid ads and campaigns.
SEO and SEM do have many similarities. First off they both need keywords to be found. Second, they both concentrate on driving traffic back to a website with organic results and traffic, or by paid traffic.
Therefore, it is a good idea to use both SEM and SEO as complementary tools to increase visibility on search engines. To do this, we encourage you to make sure your website is SEO friendly and incorporates all best practices. This way, when you use paid marketing and PPC campaigns, Google will already recognize your site as being high quality and trustworthy while placing you in the paid search results section.
3. Are SEO companies worth it?
SEO companies and their services can provide a high return on investment (ROI) if they have a strong background, specific and unique SEO strategies for their clients, and they follow White Hat SEO practices. If the company conducts their SEO services correctly, businesses can reap the benefits of the 93% of online experiences that begin with searches on search engines.
Even though partnering with an SEO agency can have high ROI, it is imperative that you know how to choose a good SEO company. While choosing an SEO agency make sure you have reviewed their experience and portfolio, ensure they are transparent about their strategies and pricing, and make sure that they are responsive and communicate with your well about SEO in general as well as their overall goals and objectives for your small business website.
4. Are SEO keywords case sensitive?
SEO Keywords are not case sensitive. You can type them in uppercase or lowercase letters with no difference. Google has become extremely efficient at detecting and understanding keywords. Therefore, while conducting ads, performing keyword research, or utilizing keywords in your content, there is no need to use two separate keywords with upper case and lower case letters.
Google and other search engines have no issues with distinguishing between lowercase and upper keywords. Whereas, search engines have become so efficient at detecting and understanding search phrases, they can and often do include information that is not an exact reference but has a high relevance.
One important thing to keep in mind, is that while writing website content avoid using keywords and phrases that are in all-caps. Two reasons why this should be avoided is that writing in capital letters is considered poor quality content, and writing in all caps makes it more difficult for people to read and skim content.
5. Are keywords important?
Keywords are essential in developing website content as they inform search engines about the topic of the content. Moreover, they are the terms that search engine users use in their search queries and to locate specific content. Using specific and correct keywords that match search intent for the particular query allows websites to be found via search engines and their search engine results pages (SERPs). These are only a few reasons why keywords are important while focusing on content writing for SEO.
6. Are SEO rankings guaranteed?
It is impossible to guarantee SEO rankings. Whereas search engines and SEO experts warn against making these types of guarantees. Google has released an official statement stating:
“No one can guarantee a #1 ranking on Google.”
“Beware of SEOs that claim to guarantee rankings, allege a “special relationship” with Google, or advertise a “priority submit” to Google. There is no priority submit for Google. In fact, the only way to submit a site to Google directly is through our Add URL page or by submitting a Sitemap and you can do this yourself at no cost whatsoever.”
Be weary of SEO companies that promise immediate and guaranteed results. These agencies are usually over promising to make a sale, or plan to engage in Black Hat SEO tactics to rank your website. If you decide to outsource your website’s SEO, make sure you know what a SEO business is and does; as well as how to choose a good SEO company.
7. Are SEO tools worth it?
SEO tools can help businesses save time and money, provide in-depth analysis of website issues and performance, track rankings and keywords, as well as provide suggestions to fix issues and optimize content better. SEO tools range from free limited use services to tools that cost thousands of dollars per month. If you plan on doing in-house SEO and have a large website that drives many of your sales, free to USD $30/40 tools can be worth the investment.
That being said, for most website and business owners, free SEO tools will do the job just fine. Free SEO tools that you can use include:
8. Can I do SEO by myself?
Do it yourself SEO, or in-house SEO can be conducted at a fraction of the cost it would take to hire a SEO service provider. With the vast amount of information found on SEO blogs, and from SEO content creators on Youtube, you can learn all the inner workings of on-page SEO, off-page SEO and technical SEO. Although in-house SEO may save money, you will be trading in a significant amount of time to conduct all SEO related activities and to consistently monitor performance and rankings.
A great place to start with in-house SEO is to utilize the free SEO tools available online to perform SEO audits, conduct keyword research and track search engine rankings.
9. Can SEO be automated?
SEO related tasks can be automated to increase productivity and reduce repetitive time consuming tasks. SEO tools can automate many of the tasks that need to be done to have a well optimized website. These tasks include: Backlink analysis, rank tracking, site health and audits, competitor analysis, as well as keyword research and opportunities.
Even though many of the SEO tasks can be automated, once they have been completed, they still require human interaction to fix, replace, or further optimize certain aspects of your website and its content. This is where in-house SEO or a SEO service provider will be needed.
10. Can SEO be done without a website?
SEO can be done exclusively on social media without a website. However, this can set you back when trying to meet your marketing goals. Whereas, typically search engines will present a website instead of a facebook or instagram account for service and product based inquiries.
We strongly recommend creating a website to support your social media marketing endeavors. Whereas, a website can strengthen social media as well as vice versa, and provide a more complete, and versatile shopping experience for your customers. Moreover, as mentioned above, you will have an additional means to get in front of customers while they are searching for your service or product on search engines.
11. Can SEO keywords be phrases?
Yes, SEO keywords can be phrases or consist of multiple words. These types of keywords are known as long-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords are search queries that are much more specific and usually indicate a searcher is further along their search journey and result in more conversions than ‘head’ keywords.
Long-tail keywords are important when writing website content as they will help attract highly motivated and relevant searchers. These terms have less search volume but that is because the search engine user already knows what they want and need. In other words, are further down the sales funnel once they enter your website.
12. Can you rank without backlinks?
It is possible to rank without backlinks. However it may be more difficult to rank when competing with well established brands and websites that have a high domain authority. In order to rank without backlinks, you can utilize the following focal points to rank on search engines without backlinks:
- You have to focus on providing high-quality content that provides immense value to visitors
- Target long-tail keywords that have lower competition
- Take advantage of Google’s local 3-pack for local listing through Google My Business
- Research your competition and utilize similar on-page SEO tactics as they are
- Create a robust and strong network of internal links on your website
- Lower your bounce rate, by providing valuable content and matching the search intent of the keywords and queries you are targeting
13. Does changing domain names affect SEO?
Yes, changing domain names will have a negative impact on your SEO as search engines have indexed your website according to the initial domain name. Moreover, changing domain names will result in the domain authority that the site has built up in terms of backlinks and citations to be lost.
However, there is a work around to ensure as much of the authority and SEO performance of the initial website are passed on to the new one. By using 301 redirects on your old server you can point all existing pages and posts to their new, equivalent content on the new website. Make sure that you are familiar with HTML redirects and check the new website’s history to ensure there are no preexisting penalties or issues.
14. Does duplicate content affect SEO?
Google does not impose penalties for websites that have duplicate content. However, it does treat duplicate content differently as it filters it out. The filtering of content will then result in a loss of ranking for those particular pages.
When your website has duplicate content, Google tends to get confused as it will force the algorithm to choose which of the pages should be indexed and ranked, and which one shouldn’t. Forcing Google to choose between the duplicate content can result in Google excluding the original page and its content from search results. Moreover, Google has released multiple search algorithm updates that penalizes duplicate content!
Therefore, you should avoid duplicate content whenever possible. It may be challenging to remember exactly what you wrote and if you are repeating yourself or not. Luckily, there are tools out there that can assist you in determining how much duplicate content exists on your website. One such tool is Siteliner.
Remember, duplicate content can be both internally and externally. Therefore, make sure to check your content with tools like Siteliner, or even on Google itself, to ensure that none of your content is duplicated or ‘scraped’ from another website, as it can result in penalties for your website.
15. Does SEO work for YouTube?
SEO is a key component for getting views on YouTube. YouTube is now the second biggest search engine on the internet, and ranks content according to the channel, playlists, metadata description, videos and transcripts, closed captions and subtitles. Unlike Google, YouTube doesn’t use backlinks as a factor, thus putting more importance on the components listed above.
As YouTube is a search engine based information provider, SEO techniques need to be utilized in order to get content in front of viewers. The more text based content you provide in your videos, the better chance you have of ranking well and getting the content in front of people searching for queries around your topic.
16. How to do Keyword Research?
Conducting keyword research is essential to ensuring that a website can get found and noticed on search engines. Whereas, a piece of website content should incorporate both ‘head’ and long tail keywords to inform search engines what the topic of the content is, and what terms it should be displayed for. In order to conduct keyword research, there are five main components to take into consideration:
- Generate a list of themes and topics that are essential to the business and its services and products.
- For each topic and theme, separate them into categories and populate each category with relevant keywords both head terms and long tail keywords.
- Determine the searcher intent behind each topic and keyword and plan accordingly
- Broaden your keyword list by including relevant terms and keywords
- Use a free keyword research tool to research the search volume and difficulty of each team
For more in depth actions to be taken for keyword research, see our article: Keyword Research for SEO: A How to Beginner’s Guide.
17. How to conduct SEO?
There are many aspects to SEO, including on-page SEO, off-page SEO and technical SEO that contribute to the website’s overall SEO performance. A few of the most essential basics to conducting SEO for a website include:
- Conduct and perform keyword research on the business’s related topics and themes
- Incorporate and include head and long-tail keywords throughout the website and its content
- Develop a strong permalink strategy that incorporates SEO best practices
- Use external links and internal links throughout the website content
- Write and develop high-quality, trustworthy content that meets Google’s content standards
- Use best practices when uploading images and optimize all aspects of them (titles, alt tags, and size)
- Ensure that page speed is optimized and performing well on desktop and mobile
- Optimize meta descriptions, titles, header tags and images with keywords
- Consistently revamp and update your pages and content to continue to be relevant for users
18. How long does it take to see SEO results?
To see SEO results on your website it takes between 4-12 months. Depending on the SEO strategy taken like targeting low-hanging keywords and a less competitive niche, websites will start to see increases in performance after the first few months. However, to see significant measurable results, it will take upwards of six months.
Moreover, if the specific niche is highly competitive with high domain authority websites, it can take multiple years to carve out a high ranking spot on Google search engine result pages (SERPs).
The time it takes to begin seeing a return on investment for your SEO, should not be a deterrent. As throughout the time it takes to see huge results, there are other ways to drive traffic back to your website. Additionally, if you are looking to speed up the time it takes, the best action is to produce more content. The content should be robust, well written, and provide substantial information to your visitors.
The more high-quality content you produce, the easier it will be to get noticed by visitors as well as Google in general. Meaning you can develop more backlinks, trust and authority in your niche. All which are important to a website’s overall SERP ranking
19. How long should a blog post be?
Blog posts should have a minimum of 300 words to rank on search engines. However, shorter blogs have a more difficult time ranking on Google. Therefore, to rank more easily, blog posts should have more than 1,000 words. And, to have the optimal opportunity to rank, Capsicum Mediaworks has conducted research that shows, on average, the top 10 SERP results for Google searches are between 2,000 and 2,500 words.
To get more in-depth information check out our how long a blog post should be guide.
20. How much does SEO cost?
The average cost of SEO services are between USD $500 to $20,000 per month. These costs depend on the size of the website, which SEO, content and website services will be included, and the overall goals and objectives of the SEO campaign.
You will get what you pay for with SEO service providers. If you decide to work with a small cheap SEO agency, their services may be substandard. However, that is not always the case. The best thing to do is properly vet the SEO business to fully understand their capacity and ability. Moreover, depending on your budget and overall SEO goals for your website, you have three options to pay for search engine optimization services: By the hour; By the month; or, By the project.
21. How does SEO work?
Search engine optimization works by optimizing a website’s pages, posts and backend mechanisms. There are multiple steps taken to optimize a website with SEO techniques, including on-page SEO, off-page SEO and technical SEO. These three components all contribute to a website’s ability to rank on search engines and drive organic traffic back to it.
Search engines will then crawl, index and rank individual pages according to their relevance, trustworthiness, content and authority on the topic. Depending on how the search engine interrupts your content, and compares it to similar topics will dictate which position the content will rank in.
These ranking positions are dynamic and change over time depending on the introduction of new content, old content being deleted and content being updated and revamped to provide more use to the search engine users looking for that information.
22. Is WordPress Good For SEO?
WordPress is one of the best CMS for SEO. Whereas, WordPress allows for website owners to easily optimize all aspects of their websites including the key off-page and on-page SEO elements. Moreover, WordPress is an easy to use website builder that allows beginners to quickly and easily develop and optimize their WordPress with search engine optimization in mind.
WordPress is only one of many CMS available online. We at Clear Door SEO are proud users of WordPress and strongly recommend WordPress over other CMS such as Squarespace. You can check our blog about how to make your WordPress blog SEO friendly to get a more in depth account about why we suggest using WordPress for your website.
23. How to use SEO to drive website traffic?
Driving organic traffic to your website is the main purpose of engaging in SEO practices. Key components that will help drive website traffic to your site by using SEO include:
- A well-designed and structured website
- Utilize content topics and themes to develop authoritative content
- Conduct keyword research in order to incorporate head and long-tail keywords in your content
- Develop high-quality content that meets user search intent and builds trust with Google and your audience
- Optimize titles and headlines to capture the attention of your audience as well as inform Google what the piece of content covers
- Optimize images including size, title, alt-tags and captions
- Ensure that your website has a fast load speed as it is a ranking factor, and as slow speeds are one of the biggest contributors to a high bounce rate
- Optimize and enrich meta descriptions with important and informative
- Optimize for local SEO
- Optimize for rich snippets (confused about the differences between rich and featured snippets? Have a look at our resource that discusses what is the difference between rich snippets and featured snippets.)
- Employ SEO best practices when developing permalinks
- Use internal linking throughout your content to build an authoritative collection of website content and to make navigating easier
SEO helps drive organic website traffic back to your website. However there are other sources of website traffic that should be used to help your website grow. Check out our website traffic sources blog to learn more about traffic in general. We also have a blog about organic website traffic as well as direct website traffic to help bolster your understanding of all of the aspects of website traffic.
24. Is buying backlinks legal?
Buying backlinks to build your website’s domain authority violates Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. More specifically, any bought link that is intended to pass on PageRank is considered to be a Black Hat SEO tactic, as it is aiming to manipulate the authority of the page, and increase its ranking on Google.
That being said, many websites and SEO agencies will tell you the most important aspect of SEO is backlinks and domain authority. And thus, you should buy backlinks. This might be the quick solution to building a website, however it does put you at risk of violating Google’s guidelines, which can result in a penalty or your website being blacklisted from showing up in search results.
We strongly recommend developing content that is high-quality and provides value to your audience. If you are able to provide value to people and websites, you will naturally and safely build backlinks to your website.
Check out how to use White Hat methods to build backlinks blog for a deeper look into how to secure backlinks.
25. PPC or SEO – Which is best for a website?
Both PPC and SEO are important for a website as they focus on driving website traffic in two different ways. Whereas, SEO focuses on driving free organic website traffic to a website, and PPC focuses on driving paid traffic to the website by using ads. The two approaches differ in a few different ways.
Search engine optimization will help a website secure long term and sustainable growth and traffic to a website. SEO brings in highly motivated traffic by increasing the website’s visibility on SERPs.
PPC provides short term and intense traffic for a website. Whereas, the traffic will only continue for as long as the ads are being paid for. PPC and ads will place webpages at the top, above the organic web results as well as at the bottom right below the search results.
If a business has the budget, PPC and SEO should be used together to drive different types of traffic to a website. However, if the website has a small budget, but has time to slowly build its brand and traffic, then SEO is the best option.
26. Why are my pages not getting indexed?
Google states that the main issue with pages not getting indexed is because the website or page is new. Moreover, with new sites Google may not have had an opportunity to find, crawl, and index the page yet. For Google to index new pages it can take anywhere from a day or two to a few weeks. Also, even though the page has been crawled, Google states that it could take additional time for it to actually index the page.
This can be frustrating for website and business owners. To help speed up the process of getting your pages and posts indexed, you can use the URL inspection tool, which will allow you to request Google to immediately crawl and index the page. However, this method is not a sure fire way of getting a page to be indexed either as other issues may appear during the crawling process. Some of these issues may include:
- Website or Page being new,
- The website has recently been restructured or moved to a new domain
- Manual auctions have been applied to the website
- There have been security issues reported on the website and page
Note: these potential issues are directly from Search Console Help
27. Why is my website not ranking on Google?
There are multiple reasons why your website might not be ranking on Google. However, the number one reason it is not ranking is because it is not indexed yet.
To check the current pages that are indexed, you can use Google Search Console and examine the coverage report. The coverage report section will provide you with an overview of the pages indexed, which ones have errors and which ones have been excluded.
Another way to check is by running a ‘site:’ search for your website. It will look like this:
If you find that your pages have been indexed, reasons why your website may include:
- You have a brand new site and don’t have the authority or credibility yet to rank for competitive searchers. This ‘new site’ issue may have something to do with what SEO experts call the ‘sandbox effect’ on Google which limits new websites’ ability to rank.
- The content you are producing is of poor quality and does not match the searcher’s intent. It is extremely competitive online with approximately four million blogs getting produced daily. Therefore, you will need to produce high-quality and informative content to out rank the competition.
On the other hand, if you see that your pages have not been indexed yet, that means you will not be able to rank at all. Some of the reasons why your page has not been indexed yet include:
- You have blocked search engines from crawling and indexing your pages. This has to do with robots.txt files or by using noindex tags. Removing these blocks will help your content get indexed (if it is high-quality of course).
- The website is new and it hasn’t been found yet by Google, and/or you have not submitted the site to Google for crawling. Best thing to do if this is the case is to set up Google Search Console and submit your website URLs as well as sitemap to be indexed.
- Your website has received a manual penalty from Google for violating its Google Webmaster Guidelines. However, this is rare and is usually reserved for only extreme cases. These penalties result from Black Hat tactics being used on the website. You can check the status of your penalties by checking Google Search Console’s Security and Manual Actions section.
28. What Are Google’s Most Important Ranking Factors?
Google confirmed in 2016 that its top three ranking factors include: links, content and RankBrain. In simple terms, this means producing high-quality website content that provides value to other websites, and thus will make them want to link to your website. Furthermore, the content will help inform Google’s RankBrain about the quality of your content and where it should be ranked in search results.
However, these three ranking factors are only what Google has confirmed. Most SEO companies and professionals believe that there are over 200 ranking factors. To shine light on some of the additional ranking factors, SEMrush produced a Ranking Factors 2.0 study, which includes factors like:
- Time on site
- Total referring domains
- Content length
- Followed backlinks
29. Will search engine optimization exist in 5 years?
Many SEO experts 100% believe that SEO is here to stay. Whereas, more and more people are turning to online means to find products and services. Additionally, social media platforms are also transitioning into SEO platforms as Facebook has around 1.5 billion searches per day. Another fact to be conscious about is that 94% of people use the internet to research products or services and about 90% use search engines like Google to find information related to their purchase.
Therefore, people believe that SEO will exist in 5 years but it will look a little different. One as we mentioned is social media platforms getting more involved in SEO and as search engines in general. The second aspect that will be different is the transition from desktop searches to mobile searches instead.
Of course search engines and SEO will change in the future, but we are sure of one thing, SEO will be the way businesses get their products and services noticed on the internet. SEO will be important for the next 5 years, and more than likely much longer than that.
30. What are backlinks?
Backlinks occur when one website links to another website or web resource. A third party website linking to your website content would be a backlink for your website, and an external link for their website. Backlinks can be thought of as a citation or ‘vote of confidence’ for the website they are pointing to. Additionally, backlinks will help build and improve a website’s domain authority and overall SEO ranking on search engines.
31. What are featured snippets?
Featured snippets are selected excerpts from content that appear in the coveted ‘Position 0’ of Google’s search results. Featured snippets are displayed above the organic search results and are meant to provide quick answers to informational search queries. There are four main types of featured snippets including:
- Definitions or Answer targets
- Bullet and Number List
Featured snippets help propel websites to the top of search results and drive organic traffic to their website. Online businesses should work to optimize content to win the different types of feature snippets. To find out more about the different types of snippets and how to win them, check out our Featured Snippets blog.
32. What are the best SEO strategies?
To start with there are two main types of SEO strategies: White Hat and Black Hat SEO. White Hat are the SEO strategies that are considered to be ethical and that don’t violate search engine guidelines such as Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.
Black Hat SEO, on the other hand, are techniques and strategies that attempt to manipulate search engines and the rankings they assign. Black Hat techniques are considered to be unethical and will put your website at risk of being penalized by search engines, or even blacklisted from search engines all together.
Clear Door SEO only engages in White Hat SEO strategies and strongly recommends that you do as well. White Hat search engine optimization strategies include:
- Develop quality content
- Use content-relevant keywords
- Optimize with keywords for page titles, header tags and metadata (don’t keyword stuff!)
- Build authoritative backlinks for the website (Don’t buy them!)
- Ensure fast page speed and loading times
33. What businesses need SEO the most?
Highly competitive industries that focus their services on a specific locality can benefit from implementing SEO. Whereas, when service providers are competing for a finite number of customers, using SEO techniques can help propel them to the top search results and help them get more traffic. Businesses that need SEO the most include:
- Companies that are exclusively online
- Healthcare service providers
- Dentists and dental hygienist
- Real Estate Professionals.
- Restaurants, Bars, and Entertainment.
- Legal Professionals and law offices.
- Service providers – plumbers, contractors, electricians, foundation repair
No matter your industry, having an online presence that generates leads for your business is a good idea.
34. What does a SEO specialist do?
SEO specialists and SEO agencies are responsible for identifying, developing and executing strategies that aim to increase the performance and ranking of a website. The ultimate goal of these strategies are to increase the website traffic, and generate more potential leads for the online business. Moreover, SEO specialists may also assist with optimizing the conversion rate of the website.
Some of the tasks that a SEO specialist and agency do include:
- Write, edit and develop content that is optimized for web pages
- Oversee on-page off page and technical components of SEO
- Conduct keyword research and monitor the rankings and analytics of them
- Monitor the performance of a website
- Engage in backlink and citation building
- Generate additional leads and focus on conversion rate optimization
- Develop content marketing strategies and integrate them to reach the business’ goals and objectives
35. What is better: Google Ads or SEO?
Both Google Ads and SEO have their advantages and disadvantages. Google Ads is for businesses looking for an instant and easy way to get in front of customers and drive traffic back to their website. Whereas, SEO is for companies looking for a long term solution to increasing their organic traffic.
To choose one over the other may be the wrong approach, as typically they work well together. However, usually, depending on the resources of the company will determine the decision on which technique to utilize. A company that has more time than money, will typically choose SEO over Google Ads. On the flip side, a business that has a higher marketing budget and has little time, will utilize Google Ads instead.
36. What is better: SEO or social media marketing?
Neither SEO or social media marketing is better than the other. This is because they both serve different purposes and audiences. Whereas, social media will help a company develop a brand and community that supports them, while SEO will help a business generate sales from search engine users searching for products and services.
SEO and social media marketing should be used simultaneously as they provide benefits to each other. Social media can help generate attention around your brand while also driving referral traffic back to the website to generate sales.
Therefore, if the business has the bandwidth to engage in social media marketing as well as SEO, both should be worked on together. However, if a company can only concentrate on one, SEO may be a better option as it will help provide long term sustained traffic.
37. What is Google Analytics?
Google helps companies and SEO professionals by providing in depth web analytics for websites with their Google Analytics platform. Moreover, the platform dissects the type of website traffic arriving at a website as well as other essential metrics, including: bounce rate, duration of stay, and number of interactions.
38. What is keyword stuffing?
Keyword stuffing is the process of over optimizing content, meta tags, or even anchor text with keywords in an attempt to manipulate and gain an unfair advantage of getting ranked. The process of keyword stuffing will hurt your SEO performance as well as negatively impact your user experience.
SEO agencies and experts believe that the ideal keyword density for a piece of content is to be around 1-2%. In other words, this means that a particular keyword appears approximately two times for every 100 words.
39. What is on a SEO checklist?
The following components should be on every basic SEO checklist:
- Make sure to set up your Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools
- Ensure that the website has been connected to Google Analytics
- If you are using WordPress, install SEO plugins to help with optimizing all components of the website
- Generate and submit a Sitemap to Google Search Console
- Create a robots.txt file for your website to restrict crawling access to certain sections of your website
- Check Search Console for Manual Actions
- Check the crawl and index permissions on your website
There are different types of checklists that should be used while optimizing your website. For a more complete account of the different types of SEO checklists, check out our blog article SEO checklists for 2022.
40. What is search intent?
Search intent, user intent, or query intent are synonymous, and describe the users overall purpose of conducting an online search. In other words, it is the reason why the person is conducting a specific search. For SEO, and content development, it is essential that the website content matches the search intent or answers the particular question being asked.
In order to ensure that you are matching user intent, research should be conducted on content that is already ranking for the particular keyword. By researching you can understand the type of content that should be written, and in what format it should be in. A few questions to consider before you start writing content to help match user intent are:
- Is the searcher looking for information or an answer to a question they have?
- Are they searching for a specific website?
- Are they looking to buy a service or product?
Depending on where the search engine user is along the user journey will determine the type of content you should produce. Try to put yourself in the shoes of the visitor and determine what the particular person is trying to find or buy. Finally, there are five types of user intent you should consider:
- Informational Intent
- Navigational Intent
- Transactional Intent
- Commercial Intent
- Local Search Intent
41. What is the difference between on-page, off-page and technical SEO?
The three different types of SEO are responsible for optimizing different portions of a website. Whereas, only after optimizing all aspects will your website reap the full benefits of search engine optimization. What each of the three SEO categories are responsible for are in the table below:
|On-Page SEO||Off-Page SEO||Technical SEO|
|Site Content||Backlink building||Site Speed|
|Title and meta tag optimization||Content Marketing||Structured Data|
|Header tag optimization||Social Media||Canonicalization|
|Internal Linking||Reviews||XML Sitemaps|
|Image optimization||Citations||Hreflang tags|
42. What is the difference between SEO and digital marketing?
Digital marketing is the overall term encompassing SEO. Businesses use SEO as a tool to accomplish their marketing goals and objectives. Whereas, they use SEO to drive organic traffic to their website to place people into their sales funnel and attempt to convert them into a sale.
The main difference between the two is that we use SEO to optimize a website to increase its ranking on search engines to gain more visibility and increase website traffic. Digital marketing however, is responsible for the overall methods used to communicate value to customers through digital tools.
43. What is SEO for e-commerce?
SEO for e-commerce is the process of utilizing search engine optimization techniques to improve an online store’s visibility and ranking. Moreover, it is the process of driving free organic traffic back to the website instead of using PPC or other types of marketing campaigns.
Employ regular SEO techniques and tactics to increase the ranking of your online business including, developing high-quality content that is descriptive and incorporates keywords throughout it. Additionally, you should be trying to acquire and build backlinks and citations to your website to inform search engines that you are a high quality and trustworthy site they can display to search engine users.
The most common ecommmerce platforms are:
44. What is a good Page Speed Score?
Google measures a website’s speed through their PageSpeed mechanism. PageSpeed is an essential element to monitor and optimize for as it is a ranking factor for sites. Therefore, it is crucial that a page has a fast loading time both for Google and its users, as a slow load speed is one of the biggest contributors to a high bounce rate.
PageSpeed Insights tool has three categories of page speed including:
|Orange (needs improvement)||50-89|
The main takeaway here is that you should aim to have the fastest possible speed for your website. The faster your speed is, and the closer you get to ‘100’ the more resource intensive it will become to optimize. Therefore, compare your website to your main competitors and see how your page speed compares to theirs, and make a decision based on that.
45. What SEO tools should I use?
There are multiple SEO tools out there that do more or less of the same functions. However, depending on the level of SEO you will be doing, and for how many websites, you may be able to use free SEO tools to accomplish all of your tasks.
To each its own, different people will recommend different search engine optimization tools for various reasons. Here, we will list out the free SEO tools we use (all are great for small businesses and professionals to use):
46. What’s the difference between HTTP and HTTPS?
Simply, HTTPS is HTTP with encryption, or security. The difference between the two different protocols is that HTTPS utilizes SSL to encrypt and secure the normal HTTP requests and responses that are on the internet. The SSL encryption results in a website being more secure and safe to use than a HTTP website. You can determine which protocol a website is using by looking at the URL. Whereas, a website that is secure will have HTTPS in its URL. It will look like https://.
It is important to secure your website and incorporate HTTPS protocols as search engines are leaning towards incorporating security as a ranking factor. More importantly, having a secure site will provide your websites with a safe and secure experience.
47. When should nofollow links be used?
No-follow links are links that inform search engines like Google to not follow or attribute any ‘link juice’ to the destination webpage. Moreover, no-follow links do not help increase the particular pages PageRank, and thus doesn’t assist it in ranking better on SERPs. Most of the time there is no need to use the no follow attribute. However, a few instances that may require the attribute include:
- If you sell a link to a third party
- When a business sponsors or pays for a link
- If you think your website will receive a penalty for the link, or if it may look ‘spammy’
- On comments to ensure comment spammers are not flooding your comments with links.
- Embeds and widgets if you do not want your website to be seen as endorsing all of the content on the source website
48. Where to put keywords for SEO?
Keywords are essential for informing search engines about your webpage, and for getting content noticed by search engine users. In order to properly optimize your website content, use keywords in multiple places, both on-page and for technical aspects. These locations include:
- Titles of your pages
- Meta descriptions
- Header tags
- Throughout your content
- Images including alt-tags and captions
- URLs, permalinks or the ‘slugs’ of URLs
- Anchor text for internal links and backlinks when possible
- On directories, external listings, and social media accounts
Our blog, Where to Place Keywords provides a deeper account of how to optimize all the locations you should include keywords in to increase your search engine optimization performance
49. Why is Google My Business important?
Google My Business (GMB) is important component of local SEO because it allows businesses to list their small business in regards to their location on Google Maps. When a business registers on GMB it can show up for local search results. Local search results tend to be used by individuals looking for services and products from local producers.
GMB will allow businesses to display information regarding the business, the opening and closing time, contact details, website URL and location of the establishment. Google My Business can be important for companies that do not have a large budget to spend on advertising and digital marketing in general, as it will give them an opportunity to appear in front of local search engine users.
Finally, GMB can help with establishing a business as being a credible business online as it legitimizes the business and provides it with a local citation.
50. Why is SEO important to a business?
Search engine optimization is essential for online businesses as it provides them with a means to increase their ranking and visibility with potential customers. Moreover, organic search traffic tends to be high-quality and motivated leads. Therefore, SEO helps online service and product providers an opportunity to develop website content that will answer their search queries, provide value, and build a relationship with potential customers that are looking for what the online company offers.
50 SEO FAQ to Answer all Your Questions
The article has 50 SEO FAQ to provide information regarding all aspects of search engine optimization. Did we leave anything out? Let us know in the comments below!
We at Clear Door SEO, a SEO company from Portland Oregon, are here to help small businesses in growing their online presence and generating new leads. Moreover, we focus on assisting companies go from leads to conversions. If you are in need of content writing services, on-page SEO, off-page SEO and technical SEO services, Clear Door SEO’s team would be happy to help!
Feel free to contact us now with any inquiries, or questions you may have regarding SEO!