Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the system used to improve the presence of a business online by using all non-paid forms of search (organic, local, universal, and mobile). The goal is also to increase customers for that business as well. This basically means that the more often a site appears in the search results list, the more visitors it will receive.
In the past, it used to be, “If you aren’t on the first page, your website will not be noticed”, which still holds true today.
There are multiple kinds of SEO, and each has a particular focus.
Local SEO is the result within the Map section of the SERP related to the term searched. It’s the means of constructing signals of reliability around either a location or a series of locations. These signals can be reviews, citations and local links.
Local results are what someone will see when searching queries such as “Paediatrician + city” or simply “paediatrician”. These Local results are displayed within the Map section of the SERP. It’s simple to see in the image below where I only searched “paediatrician”.
Google is now smart enough to know if a searcher is in Melbourne, searches for “Paediatrician” the person most likely wants paediatricians around the city of Melbourne, and will return the closest results.
Organic SEO, or standard SEO is the method used to achieve a high ranking, unpaid position on search engine results. There’s many methods to help your organic SEO such as boosting keywords, backlinking, and posting high-quality content as well as “black hat” SEO methods with keyword stuffing and link farming.
Organic search results, also called “natural” search results, are listings on the search engine result pages that appear based on their relevance to the search terms based input by the user.
They are not advertisements or paid results such as pay-per-click advertising. Ranking high in organic search results is what organic SEO is all about and exactly what you want to achieve.
Organic search results aren’t linked to brick and mortar but geographic location is important in the search results. Creating localised content, underlying location of the publisher, and to some extent citations are used to rank organic pages. In organic SEO, Google looks for trusted content over a trusted location.
You can tell the difference between organic search results and paid results since the search engines regularly place paid listings above or to the right of organic results. Paid results sometimes also have a shaded background or other visual clues to set them apart.
Universal SEO shows results containing blended information. In today’s searches, we want to know a lot of information such as hours, a map with driving directions, video reviews and even photos of the business or product. This wasn’t possible in the SERP prior to May 2007. Instead, a different search would need to be done for each item a searcher wanted to find in Google. Fast forward 9 years and the SERP today is much more beneficial, informative, and user friendly.
Mobile SEO is the standard for organic & universal SEO. This is due to Google (in particular) placing full emphasis on people’s use of mobile devices for search. Mobile SEO used to be a separate service when mobile sites ranked differently to desktop sites. You can see in the chart below, mobile users now dominate internet searches.