Jun 6, 2024

SEO Pillars: A Complete Guide To The 4 Pillars Of SEO

SEO Pillars: A Complete Guide To The 4 Pillars Of SEO
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SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a multifaceted discipline that requires coordinated actions across diverse areas.

As new technologies, like AI, are booming and search engines are constantly evolving towards user-centered, intent-focused listings, SEO is dynamically shaping its processes to keep up with the new norms.

Still, there are 4 SEO pillars that are (and always have been) fundamental in every search engine optimization campaign.

So, let’s dive in.

The Four Pillars Of SEO

If you run a business and want to capitalize on your website, here are the key SEO areas you need to work on with your SEO agency.

1. Technical SEO

Optimizes all technical aspects of your website to align with current trends and search engine demands. Plus, it deals with proper crawling and indexing of your web pages.

2. On-Page SEO

Handles all on-site elements of a website (like navigation, headlines, URLs, and visuals) for a better user experience and more effective rankings for targeted searches.

3. SEO Content

Carefully crafted content that aims to offer valuable information to searchers and website visitors and that’s also optimized for strategic keywords.

4. Off-Page SEO

As its name suggests, off-page SEO includes activities outside the website itself, like acquiring backlinks from 3rd party sources, increasing social engagement and brand awareness, etc.

Such actions strengthen trust, credibility, and authority for search engines and potential customers.

Working on all 4 SEO pillars and monitoring results improves your website’s visibility, traffic, targeting, and engagement.

And ultimately translates into increased revenue.

In fact, search engine optimization is a significant tool to increase conversions.

Currently, 77.53% of all web traffic comes from organic searches, in contrast to paid searches, which account for only 15% of traffic.

Actually, B2Bs generate double the revenue from organic searches than all other channels combined!

With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at each of the four pillars of SEO.

Technical SEO: Build Solid Foundations For Your Entire SEO Strategy

Technical SEO makes a firm technical basis for your entire website.

It’s always best to follow all the latest technical demands that affect search engine visibility and indexing right from the beginning (development stage).

In this way, you shield your website from future ranking drawbacks and abide by user-centric best practices.

Though numerous details make a website 100% technically sound for SEO, here are the main areas to work on:

1. Site Speed

Both website visitors and search engines prefer fast-loading sites.

A high site speed (on mobile and desktop) offers a better user experience.

As a result, search engines, especially Google, promote fast-loading pages that facilitate users to find out what they are looking for quickly and pleasantly.

Plus, quick-to-load pages increase dwell time on the website, reduce bounce rate, and increase conversion rate.

2. Indexing And Crawling

Ensuring that search engine bots can actually crawl (i.e. find and read) your public web pages is the very first step to ranking.

SEO-friendly coding, optimized website architecture and accurate information in your robots.txt (among other things) can prevent crawlability issues.

Then, you need to ensure that your website is appropriately indexed.

Indexing depends on scrupulous internal linking, solid site maps, efficient crawl budget allocation, etc.

Regular technical SEO audits can detect issues such as orphan pages, zombie pages, and redirect loops.

3. Responsiveness

Responsiveness ensures that your website offers the same user experience on any device.

From smartphones to 4K screens, all pages and elements of your web pages must look equally good with an inviting UX design that boosts CRO.

With new screen sizes and devices flooding the market, maintaining a great look for the most popular (if not all) smartphone, tablet, and desktop screens is a core ranking factor.

On-Page SEO: Create Smooth Navigation Experiences For Optimal Keywords

You could describe on-page SEO (or on-site SEO) as any front-end element on your website that deals with (key)words and effective navigation.

So, yes, there are countless on-page details to work on. Here are the most important:

1. Website Architecture

An organized website structure that makes sense helps Google (and people) understand the purpose and relevance of every page and, in essence, of every element on a page.

The very first thing to do is make sure that all your pages are categorized with a solid hierarchy.

Typically, all main website categories are at the top of the ‘pyramid’ with all other pages listed below, in 2nd and 3rd-level categories.

This way, both bots and people navigate easily and confidently through your entire website.

How Do You Structure An SEO Page?

Precise structure is vital on a page level as well.

All the elements of a page should be placed in an SEO-friendly way that facilitates search engines and delights visitors.

Here’s a brief to-do checklist for SEO page structure:

  • Place your H tags in a rigid hierarchy. Always include just one H1 placed at the top of your page.
  • Add informative internal/external links to facilitate users to find out more or quickly jump to another interesting page of your website. Just don’t overdo it.
  • Make sure that popups or other additional elements on the page do not cover your main content (on any device) and that there’s a visible (an easily clickable) X close button where needed.
  • Add insightful CTAs at prominent places on your page to show users what to do next (and also boost your conversion rates.)

And remember: always put your website visitors before search engines and offer them attractive and valuable content.

2. SEO Keywords

Meticulous keyword research offers vital information for your SEO strategy.

By finding out what your target audience (and future customers) are looking for in Google and other search engines, you can develop a long list of valuable keywords that you can then incorporate throughout your website with SEO mastery.

Furthermore, a competitor analysis helps you spot keyword gaps and get top rankings for those queries before others do.

Plus, strategically including SEO keywords for various topics related to your industry and offerings enhances your topical authority among thousands (or millions!) of competing pages.

Getting to the top of SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) is not only a matter of prestige. It’s a robust revenue-increasing strategy.

As a matter of fact, recent statistics show that up to 60% of clicks go to the top three organic search results.

Where Do You Put Keywords On A Website?

To leverage your on-page SEO, you should include your keywords in:

  • Page titles & descriptions (meta tags)
  • Page headings
  • URLs
  • Paragraphs
  • Text links (anchor texts)
  • Image/video file names, alt tags, captions, descriptions, etc.

3. Structured Data Markup

Structured data provide search engines with valuable information on what your page is all about. They let bots know who the page belongs to, who the author is, what the main subject is, etc.

When you help Google to read such fundamental information easily, it can index your pages faster and more accurately.

As a ‘reward,’ you get the chance to appear in search results with a rich snippet or even rank with a featured snippet at the very top of search results, above everyone else, even advertisers! That’s the coveted position zero in SERPs.

SEO Content: Elevate Your Brand For Bots And Humans

Content can make or break your SEO.

Search engines and human visitors read your content to see if they will list you, like you, or do business with you.

Your website content helps you stand out from competitors and it’s a fundamental marketing tool that increases brand awareness, sales, and customer loyalty.

That said, your web pages must include different types of content to provide a comprehensive image of your business that inspires trust and credibility and gives insightful information.

So, try to add a variety of content that fits your website and industry. For example:

  • Business information
  • Articles
  • Case studies
  • Reviews
  • Images and videos

... and more.

And remember: make content that people will want to share and reference - and give your off-page SEO a lift!

Off-Page SEO: Let The World Speak For You

As its name suggests, off-page SEO (or off-site SEO) is anything you do outside your website to raise rankings, popularity, and sales.

The heart of off-page SEO is link building. In other words, references to your pages in 3rd-party websites - ideally via text links.

Link Building

The logic behind link building is simple: when other websites (or online sources) link back to you, they actually vouch for your quality and relevance.

It’s the same concept as customer reviews - which is also a part of an off-page SEO strategy.

Picture this for a second:

When people declare they trust your brand (with 5 stars), more new customers will also trust you. And when other publishers take the time to mention you (i.e., link back to you) in their content, people and bots will notice it and think more highly of you.

However, not all backlinks are of equal importance. Link equity and a strong backlink profile are vital in measuring your off-site SEO success.

For example, if a prominent news site links to one of your pages, this is a major sign of quality for search engines and users, in contrast to a backlink in a small, personal blog.

Broadcasting Content

There are various ways to spread the word and your content. For instance:

  • Guest Blogging: publish your articles on someone else's blog.
  • Parasite SEO: take advantage of the domain authority of a 3rd party website that publishes your content via advertorials, news articles, contributed content, etc.
  • Influencer Marketing: a content-marketing strategy where famous personas promote and vouch for your brand online.
  • Local SEO: if you run a local business, any reference in Google Maps, city directories, regional press, etc., can significantly promote your brand on a local level.

Other things to consider in off-page SEO are public relations, social media, printed press, and word of mouth. Any kind of promotion, in fact, that points back to your website or brand.

Building Solid SEO Pillars For Your Website

If you’ve got this far down the article, you are probably intrigued by all the revenue opportunities SEO can offer for your business.

But admit it - you may also feel daunted by all the things you need to do and invest to get ahead in search rankings.

Just breathe. We’ve got you covered!

At Atropos Digital, we optimize your website milestone by milestone.

We create a personalized SEO strategy that leverages your budget and resources for optimal rankings strategically targeting long-term success.

Ready to monetize on your website? Book a strategy call.

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