Before I start with “What Is The Purpose OF SEO” in earnest, let me just say that, no matter what you may read or hear, SEO certainly isn’t dead, at least not for the single-handed blogger and affiliate marketer. For us small-time players it is a cost-effective way of beating the big brands to the top of the search engine rankings.
First, Understanding What Is The Purpose Of SEO
So, you have just had a great idea for a website with many thoughts on the type of content you would like to post and items you would like to promote. Sure, you can write and publish some of your great ideas but how is anyone going to know they are there?
You can use paid ads and sponsored posts to have your work show up in the major search engines but this can prove costly, which is not good for someone on a tight budget just starting out with online marketing. Plus, once your ad budget has run out and you have to pause your ad, your listing disappears and you are back to square one, that is no-one knows that your website is there.
It is much better in the long run, then, to optimize your posts in a way that they are recognized by the major search engine crawlers as valuable and relevant to their users for certain search terms that they may have entered into the search box. The more valuable and relevant the content of a web page is to a search engine user, the higher it will appear in the search engine rankings. Executed in the right way, search engine optimization can get your posts ranked on page one of the major search engines and all you have to invest is your time. You don’t have to spend a cent.
Plus, SEO has the advantage over paid ads in that, once you have your content ranked at or near the top of page one, it will stay there for as long as you maintain it, keeping your website visible to users whenever they enter the correct search term. You really need your posts ranked towards the top of page one of the search engine results pages, or SERPs for short, to get them noticed, preferably “above the fold” so that the user doesn’t have to scroll down to find them.
Although exposing website content to search engine users is the main reason for the existence of SEO, it doesn’t totally answer the question, “What is the purpose of SEO?”.
Further Reasons For Using SEO
We already know then, that SEO can get a post ranked towards, if not at, the top of page one of the SERPs for a given search term, hopefully bringing traffic to a website. There is more to SEO than that, though.
SEO helps build your brand and authority online.
To have the search engines trust your website with the information their users are looking for, your website needs to focus on a particular theme or niche, that isn’t too broad and isn’t too narrow. For example, if you choose to base your website on the tablet computer niche, you may find that there is too much competition, especially from the bigger brands and it may be difficult to outrank them. So, you narrow it down by choosing a sector of this niche. Too narrow, say a specific model, and you will not have enough potential visitors. Something like “Android tablets under $500” could be a better choice. It may not be, I am just trying to illustrate the difference between too broad and too narrow. It will need research. I will be covering niche research in a future post.
Once you have decided on your niche, the idea is to write many posts about your subject based on certain keywords and phrases. These keywords, the phrases that users actually type into search engines also need to be researched. You need to find the ones that the big brands cannot be bothered with, usually, the longer phrases five words or more, that have very little competition on the SERPs, yet still get searched for thirty or more times per month. Despite how difficult this may sound, these keywords and phrases exist and can be unearthed. Again, I will be covering keyword research thoroughly soon.
You will need to write at least thirty, probably more depending upon the niche, of these content-rich, keyword-based posts before your authority on the subject starts becoming recognized by the search engines. As this happens, your published posts will begin to move up the rankings, exposing you to more potential visitors. As long as your content is of value to these visitors, they will share your posts with their friends and family, your brand will grow in strength, your page authority and your domain authority will also increase.
SEO helps increase your visitor numbers and your conversions
As your individual posts move up their respective SERP rankings, so the number of potential visitors to each of these posts increases. According to research by linksmanagement.com, in 2019 the average click-through rate (CTR) for the number one ranked position of any Google search results page was 32.58%. This drops down to 16.69% for number two, 10.34% for number three, dropping rapidly down “below the fold” to 1.53% for number ten.
What this means is, if you are focusing on a keyword that draws in one hundred searches per month, if your content ranks at number ten on page one, you will get one, perhaps two clicks through to your web page per month. Whereas, if your optimization efforts have your ranking improved all the way up to number one, you can expect thirty-two or thirty-three clicks through to your web page every month.
This is a big difference that makes spending time on tweaking your SEO to perfection worthwhile. Not only will you be bringing in more visitors, but you will also be taking them away from your competitors too, as they slip down the rankings to a lower CTR.
The importance of SEO and visitor numbers is also emphasized by the generally available statistics that 51% of all searches are made organically and, of these, there is an eight times higher probability that you will get a conversion, someone carrying out a desired action on your web page such as buying your recommended product, than there is using other methods such as paid ads and ten times more likely than on social media.
SEO improves user experience and pleases the search engines
With correct optimization, your web pages and website will be constructed in such a way to give your visitors the best possible return in terms of content, value and experience after clicking through to your site seeking further information on their search query.
Although you shouldn’t ignore search engines such as Bing and Yahoo, it is a fact that well over 90% of all searches, whether desktop or mobile, are made through Google or a Google-owned search engine. So it makes sense, then, to make Google happy with the construction of your posts in order to achieve high rankings.
Google likes to keep the workings of their algorithms as secret as they can. They are constantly being modified and updated. One thing is for sure, though, and that is that Google is always looking to send their users to the best sites that answer their queries with quality content and information, so as long as you do the same you can stay optimized through all the future changes in the algorithms.
SEO makes performance easy to measure.
You could employ the services of a professional SEO agency that will provide you with detailed reports of your site”s performance and recommend actions you can take to improve it. It’s true that they will have much more experience of this than the novice affiliate marketer but you can save yourself the expense of this by using the free tracking tools that Google provides.
Google Search Console and Google Analytics provide all the statistics you need to monitor the performance of your website and each individual post. With these tools, you can measure every aspect of your site’s performance such as how many people are visiting each page, where they come from, what time of day they are visiting, what links they are clicking on and much, much more. With this information, you can make educated decisions on where to make improvements that will enhance your progress.
That’s Why SEO Exists, Now Use It!
These, then, are the basic reasons why SEO is an important part of affiliate marketing. If your website has no optimization it will not be visible and you will have no sales.
If money is no object and you can afford to have someone optimize your site for you, all well and good. But it really isn’t all that difficult to implement SEO yourself for zero cost, as long as you have the time to invest in your project. There are a few basic rules to follow and many free tools to help you out. It is then just a matter of monitoring your results and making a few minor changes where necessary to improve results.
Now that you know what is the purpose of SEO, it’s time to put SEO into action and start getting some visitors and potential customers to your website.
I have written three follow-on posts going through all of the SEO techniques that you can deploy in your pursuit of a page 1, number 1 search engine ranking that will earn you plenty of visitors, some of whom may click on your affiliate links.
The next post in the sequence can be reached by clicking on the link below:
Until then, bye for now.
If you have any questions or comments relevant to this article, website or affiliate marketing in general, please use the comments box below or email me using the Contact Stephen form.