Posts by Matthew

What is SEO?

June 14, 2024 Posted by Matthew Widdop Round-Up 0 thoughts on “What is SEO?”

SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation, is the process of optimizing a website to improve its visibility on search engines like Google. Enhanced visibility online leads to more visitors to your website, which in turn can expand your customer base or audience for the product or service you offer.

In this blog post, we will discuss:

  • How does SEO work?
  • Why is SEO important?
  • Different types of SEO

How does SEO work?

Crawling and Indexing

Google, the leading search engine globally, accounts for over 92% of global search traffic. To determine relevant content for user search queries, Google uses crawlers to find pages on the web by following links. Once Google has crawled the pages on your website, it adds them to a sitemap. This sitemap stores all information about the pages, videos, and other files on your site and their relationships.

After Google indexes all the pages on your site, it can then rank your content on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) based on several ranking factors.


Research is a fundamental part of any successful SEO strategy. Different types of SEO research include:

  • Keyword research: Identifying keywords that people search for related to your product or service and using these keywords in your content to appear high on the SERP.
  • Competitor analysis: Analysing the content strategy of competitors in your industry who rank for the same keywords and replicating some of their successful ideas.
  • Content research: Investigating different types of content and how to implement them on your website to improve SEO performance. This could include written, photo, or video content.
  • Website audit: Checking your website for any issues or errors to ensure everything runs smoothly, improving user experience and SEO.


Once you have completed your research, it’s time to start implementing your findings to improve your SEO performance. Create a content plan detailing the type of content you will produce and the keywords you will target.


SEO is an ever-changing and competitive landscape. What works to rank on Google today might not work tomorrow. Therefore, it is essential to keep up to date with industry changes, update your content, and ensure your website runs smoothly to maintain your SEO success.

Why is SEO important?

Organic Search

Organic search results appear on search engines based on the quality of the content, deemed valuable and relevant to search queries. Unlike PPC (Pay-per-click) or paid advertising, where businesses pay to appear higher in search rankings, SEO helps you organically appear higher on the SERP without paying for advertisements, making it more cost-effective in the long run.

Audience Intent

SEO allows you to target specific keywords, influencing the type of customers visiting your site and improving the quality of your website traffic. For example, if you are a car dealership looking for customers interested in purchasing a car, targeting the keyword “Ford Fiesta 2009 in Manchester” will drive more quality traffic than the broader term “Cars in Manchester.”

The first search result shows a customer who has already done some research and is more likely to make a purchase than someone just browsing. Therefore, targeting specific keyword phrases can increase the chances of conversions on your site.

Different SEO tactics

SEO strategies can be divided into three main categories:

  • Content Optimisation
  • Technical SEO
  • Backlink Generation

Content Optimisation

Content Optimisation involves making changes to your website to provide a better user experience and improve SERP results. Some examples include:

  • Improving User Interface: Ensuring easy navigation with an understandable interface.
  • Topical Information: Providing relevant information about your product or service.
  • Relevant Keywords: Using relevant keywords naturally in your content to rank higher on SERPs. Avoid keyword stuffing.
  • Written Content: Using titles, headers, paragraphs, and bullet points for easy-to-digest content.
  • Photo Content: Using relevant photos to inform your audience about your service or product.
  • Video Content: Using videos to further inform your audience.
  • Internal Links: Linking relevant pages within your website.
  • Outbound Links: Linking to external websites that provide additional information on the topic.

Technical SEO

Technical SEO involves backend improvements to your website that enhance its performance and user experience, the list of areas that can be optimised is endless but common areas include:

  • Site Speed: Analysing and maintaining loading speed on both desktop and mobile.
  • Website Structure: Organising content in a way that’s easy for Google to crawl and understand.
  • XML Sitemap: Submitting a sitemap to Google to indicate which pages to crawl and index.
  • Mobile-Friendly: Optimising your site for mobile, as most searches are conducted on mobile devices.

Backlink Generation

Backlinks occur when other websites link back to your site, referencing your content. High-quality backlinks from reputable sources with strong domain authority can improve your own domain authority, making you a more trustworthy source and improving your SERP ranking. Methods to acquire backlinks include:

  • Creating Linkable Content: Producing high-quality content that others in your industry will link to.
  • Help a Reporter Out (HARO): Offering expertise to journalists for backlinks.
  • Competitor Link Analysis: Using tools like SERanking’s Backlink Gap Analyzer to find and reach out to sources linking to your competitors.

By understanding and implementing these SEO strategies, you can significantly improve your website’s visibility, attract more visitors, and grow your audience or customer

Google Search Leak

June 7, 2024 Posted by Matthew Widdop Round-Up 0 thoughts on “Google Search Leak”

Last week Google leaked thousands of internal documents revealing some of the hidden secrets behind the companies search algorithm.

The document contained over 2,500 pages revealing some of the factors influencing search results, Google have now confirmed that the biggest leak in the company’s history is authentic.

What was contained in the leak?

The leak of the ‘’Google API Content Warehouse’’ was published on GitHub and contains some of the ‘ranking factors’ that Google attributes to the content. Some of the key findings included:

  • Google has a site authority score.
  • Google tracks Chrome visits across the web.
  • Google has a keyword stuffing score.
  • Poor navigation can lower your rankings.
  • Google stores 20 versions of your web pages.

Contradicting Google?

Google has a monopoly in the search engine industry and has long remained secretive about the algorithm that dictates its rankings. Therefore, many companies survive based on the information that Google feeds to them on how to appear higher up the Search engine results page (SERP).

However, the leaked API Document appears to contradict some of the statements Google has made in the past regarding the ‘ranking factors’ that they use in their algorithm. For example, Google have in the past denied having a website authority score and using Chrome data in website search rankings.

Information in the API document suggests that google tracks data from its Chrome web browser and has a factor called ‘’domain authority.’’

What was Google’s Response?

Google have now confirmed the authenticity of the documents but urged users not to make assumptions based on the ‘’out-of-context, outdated or incomplete’’ information that had inadvertently been made public.

Due to Google’s response, it is unclear whether any of the search factors in the document are currently in use and up to date features of the algorithm.

The Future for SEO?

Despite the document being a revelation into the inner workings of Google, the likes of which we have never seen before, SEO Experts do not suddenly have all the answers and will have to continue looking to Google to improve SEO efforts in the future.

Google introduce AI Overviews

May 31, 2024 Posted by Matthew Widdop Round-Up 0 thoughts on “Google introduce AI Overviews”

Google introduced its latest new feature at its I/O developer conference on 14 May, AI Overviews, Google’s AI-generated search results. The feature has now been rolled out to customers in the US.

What are AI Overviews?

AI Overviews are AI-generated responses that offer a preview of a topic pulled from a variety of different sources on the web. Google has designed AI Overviews to combat AI Chatbots, such as ChatGPT, that have been rapidly growing in popularity by responding to queries with content rather than website links.

The idea behind AI Overviews is to make the content more digestible and readily available to the end user. Users will no longer need to dive into different sources to piece together information, making Google a more seamless experience.

How will AI Overviews affect SEO?

AI Overviews will appear at the top of the search engine results pages (SERP), pushing organic SEO-related content further down, which is likely to damage the click-through rate, as queries are answered without the need for link clicking.

However, AI Overviews will include links to relevant webpages to back up the AI-generated information as source material, meaning SEO will still have a role to play high up on the SERP and according to Liz Reid, Google’s VP, ‘’We see the links included in AI Overviews get more clicks than if the page had appeared as a traditional web listing for that query.

How will AI Overviews affect PPC?

Google has announced that AI Overviews will contain paid advertisements if they are relevant to the search query, however, conventional search ads will remain important as AI Overviews will not appear on all searches but only ones where Google feels a summary is helpful to the end user.

The Problem with AI Overviews?

Google has already rolled out the feature to customers in the US and there has been concerns with Overviews early into its release. The generated responses to some users search queries are both inaccurate and potentially harmful. For example, when asked ‘’How many rocks should I eat per day?’’, Google’s new software suggested to eat at least one rock a day.

When pulling information from all different sources of the web, Google runs the risk of gathering information from unreliable sources and spreading it to a wider audience. This is something that needs fixing urgently if AI Overviews is going to be a success in the future.

The Future of Google and AI Overviews?

AI Overviews are set to change the landscape of Google going forward, potentially impacting SEO and PPC efforts, for better or worse, and the industry professionals will have to adapt to these changing circumstances, to continue appearing high up in search rankings.

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