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Basic SEO FAQs

In this blog post, I thought I’d go over the basic FAQs that often come up around the fascinating and complex subject of Search Engine Optimization. If you’re considering engaging SEO services for your website, or giving SEO a try for yourself, these FAQs and answers will give you a great starting point for your research.

So, what is SEO and how can it help my website?

People search the Internet via search engines such as Google, Yahoo! and Bing – but mainly Google. :) The order in which websites appear in the search engine results page is determined by the relevance and quality of your website in the eyes of the search engine. Search Engine Optimization is a method of marketing which uses specialised techniques to improve your website’s ranking in the search engine results page for particular keywords. This allows you to capitalise on the traffic delivered to your website through your search engine visibility.

What’s the difference between SEO and SEM?

Although some may use the terms SEO and SEM interchangeably, SEO is actually a component of Search Engine Marketing (SEM). SEO is concerned with optimising your website to receive higher positioning in major search engines while SEM involves multiple aspects of website promotion through search engines, including SEO and paid search listings.

What’s the difference between paid and organic search listings?

Search engines return two types of search results: organic and paid. Organic search results are the web page listings that the search engine has naturally determined as relevant to the search query. This is where SEO techniques can come into play and help you improve your organic search listing. The section highlighted in green below is where organic listings appear in Google.

Paid Google listings, also known as AdWords, are sponsored links which appear above and beside the natural search engine results (as indicated by the yellow sections above). Website owners pay the search engine in order for their ad to appear when a relevant search query is entered. Payment occurs on a ‘pay-per-click’ (PPC) basis and you have ongoing control of your ads, keywords, ad link and text. .

What is on-page and off-page SEO?

SEO combines the process of optimising off-page and on-page factors to increase your website’s search visibility. On-page refers to optimisation of the content and HTML of your website pages. Off-page refers to external factors, namely the quantity and quality of links pointing to your website. For more information about on-page and off-page SEO

What are long-tail and short-tail keywords?

Short-tail keywords are short, generic words and phrases; for example, “toys” or “car”. Long-tail keywords are longer, more detailed search queries; for example “buy plush teddy bear” and “rent BMW Australia”. Although the more precise the keyword is the less the search volume, if a potential customer types in a highly specific query in Google which matches your long-tail keyword optimisation, chances are they will find what they are looking for. As such, the conversion rate for long-tail keywords is generally much higher than for short-tail keywords.

And how do I track the results?

Although SEO affects the movement of your page rank in search engine results, keyword rankings are only part of the measure of success and should not be the primary goal of SEO. A better way to track your SEO results is by measuring incremental increases of non branded organic website traffic


More faqs


Search Engine Optimization (SEO) doesn't have to be complicated. YES, it does require a specialist skill-set and a good understanding of the search industry, but NO, you don't have to be a rocket scientist to achieve good results.

In this article, we've put together an seo guide / FAQ to help you gain a basic understanding of Search engine optimization.

  • Why is the way my website is built important?
    answer  The way a website is built is fundamental to how it performs in the search engine rankings. Each major search engine has its own way of indexing websites, their pages, their content and their keywords. Search engines use "spiders" and "search bots"(which is computer software) that crawl through each website submitted to them. If your website isn't optimised so that these search bots and spiders cant crawl your site then you will limit your rank within the search engines.
  • What are keywords and why are they important?
    answer  Keywords are the words and phrases typed into a search engine by a user. All manner of keywords and phrases are searched for and some are very heavily competed for. We help you identify those that are worth competing for and those that are not. We also help you to identify those niche keywords and phrases that are relatively uncompetitive and will generate good volumes of traffic.
  • What are meta-tags and why are they important?
    answer  They are information inserted into the "head" area of your web pages. the most valuable feature they offer the web site owner is the ability to control to some degree how their web pages are described by some search engines. They also offer the ability to prevent pages from being indexed at all.
  • What does SERP mean?
    answer  SERP's is an acronym that stands for Search Engine Results Page. It is the page that you see when you search for a word or phrase. In the SERP's page you will see various website listings with relevance to the term you have searched for. The higher the listing, the more traffic they will receive.
  • What are spiders and search-bots?
    answer  This is a program or automated script that browses the Internet indexing websites and their pages. The process is called web crawling or spidering. The web-crawlers will create a copy of the visited web pages for later processing by the search engine that will download the indexed pages to provide faster searches.
  • What is SEM and SEO? Whats the difference and why are they so important?
    answer  SEM stands for Search Engine Marketing. Its the practice of ensuring that a website is easily found by relevant visitors within all the major search engines for a particular keyword/phrase and within all their search results (both "Paid" and "Natural/Organic" results) . SEO stands for search engine optimisation. It is the practice of making sure that a website is easily found within the "Natural/Organic" search results for a particular keyword/phrase of any given search engine
  • What is the difference between "Natural/Organic" Search and "Paid" Search?
    answer  Natural/Organic Search refers to all the results within a search engine that are not adverts that pay to appear there but are displayed due to their relevance to the search term. Paid Search refers to paid for adverts that appear within the results of the search engine.
  • What are the key benefits of a well conducted Natural/Organic Search Campaign?
    answer  Achieving high organic search listings is a primary strategy of search engine optimisation. The benefit of having a website optimised at the top of the search results for a wide number of keywords is high volumes of relevant traffic. High traffic equals high conversions: whether this be sales, lead generation or other desired actions.
  • What are the key benefits of a well conducted Paid Search Campaign?
    answer  It is beneficial for a number of reasons: users that click on paid tend to be towards the end of the decision making cycle; it provides instant traffic to your website; you can target keywords that your website is not in the results for the Natural/Organic; you can target those keywords that are being displayed in the Natural/Organic search and add credibility and the like of a user clicking through to your site (remember: you only pay when someone clicks)
  • What does the term link building mean and why is it important?
    answer  Link building is the practice of increasing the amount of quality links from external websites to your own website. The more quality links you have pointing back to your website the higher a search engine will rate your sites "importance" for a particularly keyword/phrase. By 'quality' we mean links that are to websites that are both relevant to your site and relevant to the keywords that we are targeting and the user searches by. Beware of those link building services that offer thousands of links for allow one off fee or even for free. Major search engines (such as Google) will penalise your site for using these 'link farms' and as a result you will be removed from the search ranking. Building quality inbound links is a time consuming and ongoing process; We can help to provide you with a complete link building program that will build up and strengthen your site ranking over a period of time.