How SEO Works

A 3-Minute Guide for Beginners

Search Engines care about two things:

  • 1.The “Stuff” that’s on your pages (text, images, etc.)
  • 2.How many other pages are linking to your pages (these are called "Backlinks")

Good Content + Lots of Backlinks = Great Rankings!

Step 1:

What is “Good Content”?

Google likes pages that:

  • Have lots o’ text

    Ideally 1,000 words or more, and it all has to be original (sorry, no copying).

  • Contain Relevant Keywords

    But aren’t stuffed to the brim with them.

  • Keep users engaged

    The longer you can get people to stay on your page and engage with your content, the better.

  • Cite Their Sources

    If you used information from someone, drop a link to them.

A little example

  • 1 Main headline

    Should contain your keyword, and be in <h1> tags. Nothing else should be in <h1>tags!

  • 2 Subheadings go in <h2> tags

    Should contain your keyword, and be in <h2> tags. Nothing else should be in <h2>tags!

  • 3 Page Title

    Should contain your keyword, and should be no longer than 70 characters.

  • 4 Text contains your keywords

    But isn’t stuffed with them.

How do you choose the right keywords?
Step 2:

Backlinks & Stuff

The other half of the SEO picture

All Backlinks Aren’t Created Equal

The more important the site, the more valuable the backlink
What’s an important site?
A site that has lots of other sites linking to it.

Not so important E.g. The typical blog

Very important E.g. CNN, Amazon, The New York Times

  • Want to know how important a site is?


  • Step 1. Enter a URL.

    Step 2. Look at the Domain Authority of the site (abbr. DA)

  • 0-30 DA Not very
  • 30-50 DA A little
  • 50-70 DA Relatively
  • 70-100 DA Super

Things not to do:

  • Don’t steal text/content from other pages

    Google can tell.

  • Don’t stuff your articles with keywords

    Use them only a little more frequently than you would naturally.

  • Don’t buy backlinks

    Google can generally tell.

  • Don’t put invisible keywords somewhere on your page

    Google hates that.

And that’s about it!

You now know the basics of SEO.
You’re awesome!