Organic Search Engine Optimization: What is it and How to do it?
What is Organic Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Organic SEO refers to the process of improving the ranking of a webpage or website in the search engine results pages (SERPs) for targeted keyword phrases. Unlike paid ads that may pop up instantly on the top of the SERPs, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) employs organic tactics based on the relevant search engine’s algorithm to improve website ranking over a period of time.
The algorithm of a search engine refers to a series of mathematical formula that are employed by the search engine to rank web pages for any search query performed by a user on the search engine.
Over the years, search engines have evolved and their algorithm has undergone several refinements that are aimed at curbing the unfair practices that were employed to improve a website’s ranking on the SERPs. These practices are known as black hat organic SEO techniques, and popular search engines like Google and Bing have implemented strict policies that penalize webmasters resorting to black hat SEO practices and even release skynet in the form of Rank Brain to combat the strategy.
On the other hand, white hat organic SEO services refer to activities that are recommended by the search engines to enable websites to rank well on the search engines. Many of these tactics are aimed at improving the user experience of a website, and search engines strongly recommend website owners to tailor their website to the needs of their readers and not the search engines. Some white hat techniques are also implemented to make the Web a safer community for everyone. For instance, Google recently announced that it will offer a lightweight ranking boost to website owners who add a security layer to their websites by making the transition from HTTP to HTTPS.
It is important to understand that the search engines are constantly updating their algorithm. As such, it is important for website owners to stay updated on the norms and practices that are recommended by different search engines from time to time. What is valid today may no longer offer ranking benefit to websites tomorrow. Far from it, the same practice may even cause a drop in website rankings at some point in future, necessitating webmasters to stay on top of the search engine guidelines at all times.
Benefits of Organic SEO
Organic SEO varies from paid search in that its benefits are derived long after the optimization work has been completed. The ranking benefits obtained through organic SEO are more lasting in nature. Besides, you do not have to pay the search engine to deliver those results. Ranking well on the search engine for any search query also conveys the authority of your website to users who are performing those searches.
Commercially, a number of websites thrive on the traffic received from the search engines. When a user performs a search query on the search engine, he is more likely to visit the website that shows on the top of the search results. This in itself is a tremendous benefit derived from the organic search engine optimization techniques.
It is important to note that while the organic SEO results are lasting in nature, the fierce competition among websites requires website owners to beef up their SEO efforts at all times in order to stay on top of the SERPs. As such, organic SEO should not be treated as an isolated, one-time activity, but rather a series of ongoing techniques and processes that give competitive edge to websites in the search engine results.
Timeframe of Organic SEO
It is not possible for anyone to adjudicate when, if at all, the organic SEO efforts will begin to bear fruit. Even the search engines cannot offer any kind of promises in this aspect. That said, Google and other search engines stress website owners to patiently continue their white hat SEO best practices and the results will be visible at one point or the other.
Competitiveness of keywords is another important factor that determines the timeframe involved in obtaining organic SEO results. Highly competitive keywords witness cutthroat competition among websites that have been around for quite some time now, and it can be very difficult for an online startup to compete against the giants dominating those keywords.
It is for this reason that many SEO experts recommend website owners to target keywords in their business niche. These keywords have lesser competition and the results are visible sooner. Competing in the mainstream on the other hand not only involves a lot of money but also requires more time for the results to be visible.
Local organic SEO is increasingly become popular among website owners. Local businesses find it feasible and cost-effective to compete in the local territories and neighborhoods in which these businesses operate. For instance, if a business offers laundry services in New York, they should consider targeting keywords, such as ‘laundry services in New York’ as opposed to ‘laundry services’.
Costs of Organic SEO
The cost of organic SEO depends on several factors, including the experience of SEO agency and the competitiveness of targeted keywords. Moz.com (http://moz.com/blog/seo-pricing-costs-of-services) recently carried out a survey of more than 600 SEO providers of which more than 280 respondents belonged to US. The hourly SEO cost was established from $76 to $200. Project pricing, which is the most popular pricing option for organic SEO, was established from $1000 to $7500 on average.
Top 3 Organic SEO Service Companies
While a number of SEO ranking services exist, it can be very difficult to attribute the top 3 organic SEO company ratings. The criteria vary largely from one ranking agency to the other, and every SEO provider has its pros and cons.
10 Best SEO (10bestseo.com) ranks the following as top 3 SEO providers of 2014:
- Webspand (www.Webspand.com)
- Nolen W
3 Organic SEO Tips
- Don’t overoptimize the website. Search engines may perceive it as an effort to ‘game’ the system, and it may backfire causing your website rankings to drop.
- Focus largely on text. While search engines have started indexing images, text is still the most popular choice of most search engines. Excessive use of graphics may lower your search engine ranking.
- Submit your website sitemap to the search engine. This facilitates search engine bots in crawling your webpages based on the map that is submitted to them.
3 Organic SEO Tactics
Keyword Research: This is the process of selecting phrases that your target audience uses to search for your products and services on the search engine. The goal is to select phrases that will generate a lot of traffic but are still not highly competitive. A number of keyword research tools can be used to perform keyword research for your website.
SEO Copywriting: This refers to the practice of creating website content that centers around the targeted keywords.
On-Page Optimization: On-page optimization refers to optimizing elements on the website, such as text, anchor text and website code for the search engine.