What exactly is SEO?

by | Nov 27, 2019 | Insights



Open2Digital accompagne ses clients et marques dans leur stratégie digitale.

3.3 million: this is the number of times people search for information on Google every day. Almost 90% of Internet users who consult data online are limited to the first page and more specifically, the first five results. Given the millions of websites, brands and companies on the web, standing out is not easy. If a website appears at the bottom of the first search page or a few pages down the line, its visibility might as well be non-existent. So how can you improve your ranking in search engines?

Natural referencing
The solution is “SEO” (Search Engine Optimization), also referred to as natural or organic referencing. The term describes a set of techniques that optimize the content of a website in order to increase its ranking and visibility in search engines, such as Google, Bing or Yahoo.

The SEO expert
Natural referencing may seem like a simple solution, but requires a rather complex approach. This is where SEO experts come into play. The scope of the SEO consultant’s tasks could be defined in two ways: technical and semantic.

With its algorithms dedicated to monitoring the quality of content on the web, Google is becoming increasingly intelligent. In order to provide users with the best content, Google has to “understand” the user’s research intent.

Mastering and optimizing the semantic field of a site is an essential aspect of SEO. This semantic optimization is characterized by content that includes all terms associated with the main keyword. Google analyzes the user’s search intent based on the meaning created by combining search terms in a specific context. Some results do not necessarily include the exact terms used to generate the search, but instead, content that matches the expectations.

SEO, SEM and SEA – what are the differences?
SEM is the abbreviation for Search Engine Marketing, i.e. marketing related to search engines such as Google, Bing etc. As such, SEM includes all measures aimed at increasing the number of visitors. These measures can be categorised into SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and SEA (Search Engine Advertising), i.e. advertising campaigns that allow visibility on search engines for a specific fee.

Overall, an SEO specialist analyzes, reviews and implements changes made to web pages to ensure that they are optimized for search engines. He is in charge of planning, implementing and managing the company’s overall SEO strategy. Generally, it includes several varied missions such as web marketing, link building, web analysis, keyword strategy and content strategy planning, with a constant focus on impeccable quality.

Quality vs. quantity
Through its Panda update, Google launched a strong signal to websites: platforms with unedited content, filled only with keywords and generated automatically, will be penalized. Therefore, the SEO consultant must be extremely selective in terms of content. On the other hand, those who make the effort to apply real editorial work to their pages, with well-structured content including paragraphs and subtitles, will be rewarded.

Criteria for quality content:

  • Provide correct and up-to-date information (from reliable sources)
  • Include relevant keywords
  • Uniqueness/originality of content
  • Backlinks (external content recommendations)
  • Choose the most appropriate format
  • Cover the entire research intention, i.e. offer the maximum benefits by respecting “SEO semantics”

In an age where digitalisation prevails, content is king. Since online brand visibility is essential for any successful marketing strategy, the importance of SEO has become unquestionable. As Google’s requirements and algorithms change regularly, the expertise of an SEO consultant is a strong asset to ensure a website high ranking. However, natural referencing requires a minimum of IT knowledge, a mastery of SEO tools and analytical work demonstrating a methodology adapted to each customer/brand/ company. As the rules and positioning strategies evolve, natural referencing requires constant in-depth knowledge: an SEO expert thus proves to be an invaluable ally.