By developing an understanding of the basics, search engine optimization concepts become clearer and easier to implement. Knowing what to implement on your website will ensure the best possible rankings on important search engines such as Google. Developing a solid understanding of SEO begins by becoming familiar with a few basic concepts.
One of the major SEO concepts to be familiar with is link building. The importance of inbound links cannot be overemphasized. The more websites that link to yours improves the chances of obtaining a high ranking on the search engines. A high number of links is an indication of popularity as far as the search engines are concerned. The formula is simple: more links equal better ranking. Should your competitors obtain more links to their websites, then they will more than likely have better rankings than you.
Of equal importance to building links is getting the proper links. The quality of links is a factor in a search engines evaluation of a website. A link from a related website holds more weight than a link from an unrelated website. Try to find links that deal with a similar topic as your website. Also, a link from a trusted website which itself has many links pointing to it will help your search engine rankings more than a link from a website with few inbound links.
Consistently work on your link building efforts. Keep in mind that our competitors will continue to work on their links. If you become lax on working on your links, your competitors will pass you in the search engine results sooner or later. Should you become lazy and be tempted to use a link building service remember that Google and many other search engines do not like paid links. Links are considered as a representation of website popularity. You cannot pay for popularity. Google encourages webmasters to report paid links. If any of your competitors report that you have paid links, your website could be penalized
Remember that search engines rank single pages in their search results. Optimize a single page of your website for a single search term. Do not optimize the same page for more than one search term. Creating a web page specifically targeting a single search term is more advantageous than creating one which contains multiple search terms.
Although only a single page of your website will be listed in search results for a search term, search engines also take into account the totality of all pages of your website. The best strategy is to optimize different pages of your website for different keywords but all related to a central topic. This will emphasize the relevance of your website to this topic and facilitate high rankings for your keywords. Optimized content and good inbound links will greatly enhance your search engine rankings.
Avoid using redirects on your website, one reason being that most redirects do not pass on links from the old page to the newer page. More importantly, spammers have used redirects in the past for blackhat SEO purposes and search engines now frown upon this practice. There is one type of server-side redirect called a 301 redirect that search engines find acceptable. Any other type might be interpreted as an attempt to spam.
Another thing that search engines do not like is duplicate content. Should one of your web pages contain the same content as another page on the web, only one version of the content will be displayed in the search results? Similar copies, not only exact copies, can be interpreted as duplicate content. If one of your pages has a certain similarity to another page then it may be considered a duplicate.
Be aware that you can create duplicate content by mistake. Be careful in linking to your pages, search engines will look at two URLs such as http://mysite.com and http://www.mysite.com and conclude that they are two different web pages but with the same content.
Search engine optimization should not be looked upon as some esoteric practice understood only by a skilled few. Doing the correct things, including optimized content and quality backlinks, in the right order will produce the best possible rankings.