SEO Guide for Beginners

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When you built your website, you aimed to make it user-friendly, helping visitors easily find and explore your content. One of these visitors is a search engine, which helps people discover your site. SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is about helping search engines understand your content so users can find your site and decide to visit it through search results.

Understanding Google Search

Google uses programs called crawlers to explore the web and add pages to its index automatically. You usually don’t need to do anything except publish your site online. If you’re curious, you can find more detailed documentation about how Google discovers, crawls, and serves web pages.

Patience with Search Results

Changes you make to your site take time to reflect in Google’s search results. Some updates might take a few hours, while others could take several months. Generally, wait a few weeks to see if your efforts have had a beneficial effect. Remember, not all changes will result in noticeable improvements.

Helping Google Find Your Content

First, check if Google has already found your content by searching for your site with the “site:” search operator. For example, search “” If you see results, your site is indexed. If not, ensure there are no technical issues preventing your site from showing up.

Google mainly finds pages through links from other pages it has already crawled. Encourage other sites to link to yours naturally over time, or promote your content to help people discover it.

You can also submit a sitemap, which lists all the URLs on your site. Some content management systems (CMS) can do this automatically. This step isn’t required, but it helps Google discover your pages more efficiently.

Ensuring Google Sees Your Page Like Users Do

Ensure Google can access the same resources (like CSS and JavaScript) as users. If your site hides important components, Google might not understand your pages, affecting your ranking.

To see how Google views your page, use the URL Inspection Tool in Search Console.

Controlling Content Visibility

If there are pages you don’t want in search results, like personal posts, Google supports various ways to opt out. Check Google’s guide on preventing content from appearing in search results.

Organizing Your Site

A well-organized site helps search engines and users understand how your pages relate to each other. However, there’s no need to overhaul your site immediately. These suggestions are more helpful for larger websites.

Using Descriptive URLs

Descriptive URLs help users and search engines understand your content. For example, “” is more informative than “”

Grouping Similar Pages

Organizing similar pages in directories helps Google understand how often each section of your site is updated, optimizing crawl frequency.

Reducing Duplicate Content

Duplicate content can confuse users and waste search engine resources. Ensure each piece of content is accessible through a single URL. If duplicates are necessary, use canonical tags or redirects to indicate the preferred page.

Creating Compelling Content

High-quality content influences your site’s presence in search results. Write clear, well-organized, and original content. Keep your information up-to-date and helpful, focusing on what your audience finds valuable.

Anticipating Search Terms

Think about the words users might search for to find your content. Anticipating different search behaviors can improve your site’s performance in search results.

Managing Ads

While ads are common, they shouldn’t distract or prevent users from reading your content. Ensure ads are not overly intrusive.

Linking to Resources

Links help users and search engines discover more content. Use appropriate anchor text to give context about the linked pages.

Enhancing Search Appearance

Optimize your title links and snippets to make your site appealing in search results. Write clear, concise titles and use descriptive meta descriptions to summarize your pages effectively.

Optimizing Images and Videos

Use high-quality images and descriptive alt text to help search engines understand your visuals. Embed videos near relevant text and use descriptive titles and descriptions.

Promoting Your Website

Promote your content through social media, community engagement, advertisements, and word of mouth. Effective promotion leads to faster discovery by interested users and search engines.

Avoiding Outdated Practices

Focus on what’s best for your business and avoid outdated SEO practices. Don’t worry about meta keywords, keyword stuffing, or the number of headings. Instead, focus on creating valuable content and a positive user experience.

Wrapping Up: SEO Guide for Beginners

Setting up a Search Console account helps you monitor and optimize your website’s performance on Google Search. Maintain your website’s SEO over time with more in-depth tasks, and enhance how your site looks in search results with structured data.

Stay updated with the latest SEO information through the Google Search Central blog, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube Channel. Use the Google Search Central Help Forum to ask questions and find tips from experienced contributors.

By following this guide, you can improve your site’s SEO, making it easier for users to find and engage with your content.

Read more case studies or articles about on-page SEO and technical SEO. You can also check out my available services:

About the Author

Louee Gonzales

An SEO specialist in the Philippines and licensed Psychometrician who also loves writing about psychology and web development.

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