In this section of our website, we try to answer in simple, easy to understand English “what is search engine optimisation (SEO)?”. While our internal SEO manual and literature runs to over 1000 pages, below we have included a beginner´s guide that will help you to understand the SEO space a little better. Advanced readers will find this quite basic but we hope that SEO novices will find this to be a useful resource.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of improving the rank of a web page in the SERP (Search Engine Results Page) of targeted search engines for a set of identified key-phrases. It is the process of getting traffic from the "free," "organic," "editorial" or "natural" listings on search engines. The three major search engines for which we optimise are Google, Yahoo and Bing. All three follow similar but different rules for ranking websites. In order to prevent webmasters (SEO agencies) from easily manipulating search results, they all issue only general guidelines as to the factors that they rely on when ranking web-pages. Due to its popularity, Google is the search engine to which we pay most attention. In short, SEO is about getting your target web-page to the top of your target search engine as quickly as possible in order to get people to click on your website.
A keyword is a word that the owner of a website anticipates that potential clients will type in a search engine if interested in his/her product or service. For example, an hotel may identify "hotels" as a keyword worth targeting. However, this is probably too vague and generic to be of any real use even if a good rank is achieved in search engines. Far more regularly identified are key-phrases. These are a combination of words that a website owner identifies as relevant to his product or service. For example "hotels Cork" or "3 star hotels galway".
Be sure to check out this document on keyword analysis: http://www.seomoz.org/blog/6-keyword-research-mistakes-you-might-be-making
The goal is to target keywords / key-phrases that satisfy three criteria.
The first criterion is that those who search for this key-phrase are likely to be interested in the content of the website that you are optimising. For example, those people who search for "bulk dogfood" are very likely to be interested in a website that sells bulk dog food online. There is no point ranking for this phrase unless you sell bulk dog food and your website clearly promotes this.
The second criterion is that people must be actually searching for this key-phrase. For example, if someone were to search for "Bags of dogfood larger than 50kg" this person would also be relevant to the content of the online dog food sales website. However, as no one is searching for this key-phrase, ranking well for it is a waste of time. The goal is to identify relevant key-phrases for which there is demand (people searching for it on a regular basis).
Google´s Keyword Planner tool gives an indication as to global and local monthly (country specific) search volumes (demand) for any key-phrase. The local results can be tailored for the country which you are targeting. The tool will analyse a website´s content and/or make key-phrase suggestions based on a certain theme or word depending as per your preference.
Pursuing a key-phrase that has too much competition relative to the resources that you have available for a campaign is the best way to squander your money. For example, if you are a small hotel in Dublin, you will inevitably want to rank for "hotels Dublin". However, every hotel is working on this phrase and so achieving a good rank for it will be a great challenge. If you are aware of this and sufficient resources are put in place, then of course you can target such competitive key-phrases. However, if the you need a quicker return on your investment, then a clever (Search Engine Optimisation) SEO executive will exploit key-phrases with less demand and less competition for which rank can quickly be achieved and so traffic. For example "3 star hotels dublin" has lower demand but by setting up a highly targeted page and building high quality links to this page, a high rank can be quickly achieved and so traffic.
When doing key-phrase analysis, you should always look for the quickest route to positive ROI on SEO spends. The overarching principles here are to pick the battles that you can win quickly and that a large percentage of small demand is more valuable to a client than no percentage of high demand.
On-page SEO relates to the factors on the web page itself that determine its rank in search engines. Once you have finalised the list of target key-phrases and target URLs, you should conduct an on-page audit and prepare a list of on-page recommendations based on this audit. This work includes meta tag writing, page content creation, page download speed optimisation, sitemap creation and much more.
The on page factors above are crucial in signalling to the search engines the keywords and phrases that matter to a particular web-page. However, many pages on the Internet will be very similar from an on-page point of view. For example, if two companies create a webpage to promote the key-phrase "dentist dublin," both pages will likely have pretty much identical content assuming both companies are proficient in SEO. Accordingly, off-page factors are used by search engines to decide which page should rank highest. Off-page factors include how old the domain is, how many other websites on the Internet link to it, what is the reputation of the website, Google+ Local (Google Places) listings and more. The most important off-page factor by far for Google is the number and quality of links from other websites that a domain / web-page has.
Links are by far the most important SEO metric. Google affords so much weight to links as they are the most challenging metric to game / manipulate. A link from one website to another is interpreted as a vote for the website to which the link points from the website on which the link sits (host site). The higher the quality of the host site (which in turn depends on how many sites link to it), the more valuable the link is. Google´s rationale is that the best websites create online buzz ie people talk about them on blogs, on social media sites, online forums and in the process link to the site. Poor websites go unnoticed and so get no links. So, Google´s advice on how to get links is to create such compelling content that people take notice and so link to it. Content that is so strong that it attracts links is referred to as link bait.
We build only high quality, editorial links ie links that Google values. We know that one strong, editorial link will help your website’s rank whereas lots of low quality links will expose your site to being penalised by Google. To get high quality links, we generate compelling, genuinely interesting content and then reach out to the relevant bloggers and publishers in your industry. To see some of the content that we have produced, please see the web design section of our website.
If you have any questions at all on SEO, please contact us and we will be delighted to help however we can.
We were sceptical about handing over design, development and ongoing marketing of our new site to DPFOC as their technical staff are in India and we are based in Dublin. However, Eddie O' Driscoll (Irish based sales exec') came to our office, got us set up on Skype and we quickly realised that Skype and screen-sharing made communication with the team in India very easy.
We are delighted wit...
Home Care Plus identified Google as a key marketing channel for our business from day one. Having been shown by Eddie O' Driscoll how to use the Google Adwords Keyword tool, I quickly realised that there were a lot of people searching for "home care" and various other related services in Google.ie each month. Our goal was simple: build an impressive site and get it as quickly as possible to the to...
When I got involved with DPFOC in March 2012 my website was not ranking on the Google searches for any of my important key-phrases. Now, 5 months later, my top 5 phrases are at Rank 1 and my other phrases are all in the Top 5 ranking.
I notice a considerable increase in relevant enquiries via the website and the new business gained more than pays for my investment in SEO.
I would highly ...
DPFOC has out preformed our expectations and achieved our objectives in a fraction of the time we anticipated. For us, it was a very smooth interaction and the results speak for themselves. In the addition, we found all members of the team most helpful, professional, courteous and highly competent. We have no hesitation in recommending DPFOC to any potential clients as they continue to exceed ...
Perfectring.ie is a new website which showcases engagement rings from jewellers across Ireland. As we are an on-line business, the need for high volumes of traffic was essential for the website to succeed. While I had a basic knowledge in SEO I found the flexibility of DFPOC very impressive. I was provided with a listing of the key words I should focus on based on the terms people use most ofte...
Davitt Corporate Partners Ltd is Ireland's leading organisational psychology consultancy and, as such, our business was primarily driven by word of mouth. I have always been sceptical of SEO companies that claimed to be able to get you onto the first page of Google but one day I decided to give DPFOC a call and I am extremely happy that I did. All our key phrases were ranking outside the top 100 a...
Since DPFOC took over our website, our ranks have steadily improved and now we're in top 3 position for pretty much all of our target key-words which is hard to argue with. I find DPFOC staff to be very professional, friendly and genuinely interested in getting more traffic to our site. I'm very happy to recommend DPFOC to anyone looking to get more traffic to their website.
I can't speak highly enough of DPFOC. Our site is in top spot for most of our target key-phrases and our call volume is up 230%. The money I spend with DPFOC monthly is a drop in the ocean compared to the value of the clients that come through the site each week. I recommend them to everyone in business who I meet. In my opinion, they are by a million miles the best SEO company in Ireland.
Before signing with DPFOC, my website was getting very little traffic. After 3 months with them, my site is now in a top 3 rank on Google.ie for all my most important key-phrases. I now get around 30 new visitors to the site each day. This has resulted in a lot more enquiries and a return on investment many times what I pay DPFOC each month. Choosing DPFOC has been a really great choice for me and...
We have been with DPFOC now for over two years. In that time, we have seen substantial rank improvements and traffic growth to our site www.cleanscape.ie . Our traffic this year is up 75% compared to the same period last year. Every day new clients find us on Google and this generates steady flows of new business for us. The ROI that we generat...
I know a bit about SEO myself as have researched over the years. I had been getting some good results but needed an extra push to get right up the rankings. DPFOC's expertise and sheer manpower provided that push and now my site is top for many of my target phrases and the rest are climbing steadily. I'm happy to recommend DPFOC to anyone looking for a hard working, well informed, conscientious SE...
We rely on DPFOC to manage the SEO and PPC (Google AdWords) work for our two websites http://www.thebeacon.com/ and http://www.themorgan.com/ . Our experience with DPFOC is that they are tightly focused on driving the maximum number of conversions at the lowes...
I have two different websites that DPFOC work on for me. Within a month they had me on not only page one on Google but the top spot for all the phrases I advised DPFOC that I wanted to target. I know a fair bit about SEO so I know what are the best phrases and these are now all in top spot - DPFOC have far exceeded my expectation so I'm delighted to give them this testimonial.
If I compare the traffic to my website for the 8 months that DPFOC have been working on my site to the previous 8 months, traffic is up by 174%. This is because my site is in top spot for 2 of my most important phrases on Google and is in top 5 rank for 5 other phrases. I am a results oriented person and DPFOC delivers results; I am happy to recommend DPFOC to any company looking to grow visitors ...
My website is in top spot for all the phrases I advised DPFOC that I wanted to target. I am quite well informed about SEO so I know what are the most valuable phrases and these are now all in top spot - DPFOC has far exceeded my expectations and as I am in top spot for every phrase it would seem DPFOC is the best SEO company operating in Ireland.
I'm top of Google.ie for "skip hire Dublin" which is the most searched for phrase in my industry. This rank alone drives visitors and business to me every day. DPFOC also advise me on my PPC and this also sends me visitors and new clients every day. I can't recommend DPFOC highly enough in terms of the quality of the service and the value for money.
To be honest, when we initially got a call from India we were a bit dubious as we have never dealt with anyone there before. However, we then spoke to Andy Callanan in Ireland and he explained everything to us. We checked out DPFOC's site and saw that they had a lengthy list of testimonials and a very strong track record so we said we'd give them a shot. We are absolutely delighted that we did. T...
We know that when people are searching for a cleaning company either for business or personally that Google is their first port of call. We knew that to reach these people, we needed to get our site onto page 1 of Google and as high up on page 1 as possible as quickly as possible. We decided to try DPFOC as they have a lengthy list of results achieved for other companies and a lengthy list of test...
Our site is on page one for all of our target phrases and in top 3 for most and this happened far quicker than we would have expected. DPFOC staff are professional, courteous and always revert almost immediately with any query that we have. I am very happy to recommend DPFOC to any company looking to market their business on Google.
We engaged DPFOC to optimise our website for our most important key-phrases like "damp proofing" "rising damp solutions" "woodworm" and many more. Pretty much all the key-phrases are in top 3 of Google.ie with many in top spot. We find DPFOC to be honest, hard working, professional and most importantly deliver great results. We are happy to provide a testimonial for them.
Rockwood Business Centre is a busy serviced office facility. We constantly have new tenants as well as a steady stream of virtual office clients. We needed a company that could look after accounts for the business to include invoicing (rent and telephone), bank reconciliation and accounts receivable. We wanted all data online so we could extract various KPIs in real time. DPFOC recommended
I took DPFOC on to improve the rank of our website. When they took over the site, it was not ranking anywhere within the top ten pages of Google.ie for any of our key-phrases. Now, we are on top of Google.ie for "printing Cork" and in top 3 positions for other phrases like "printing company Cork" and "printers Cork." They did precisely what they said they'd do - hard to argue with that. I'm happy ...
|Key Phrase||Website||Search Engine||Rank|
|seo company Cork||www.dpfoc.com/ireland||www.google.ie||2|
|Seo services Cork||www.dpfoc.com/ireland||www.google.ie||2|
|Orla Kiely Bags||www.kilkennyshop.com||www.google.ie||2|
|Orla Kiely Bags for Sale||www.kilkennyshop.com||www.google.ie||1|
|Orla Kiely Handbags for Sale||www.kilkennyshop.com||www.google.ie||1|
|Orla Kiely Bags Sale||www.kilkennyshop.com||www.google.ie||1|
|Loss Assessors Dublin||www.balcombes.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|cloud telephony service||www.speechpath.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|cloud telephony services||www.speechpath.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|interior architects dublin||www.cantrellcrowley.com||www.google.ie||1|
|Driving lessons coolock||www.ingear.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|Home Brew Ireland||www.homebrewwest.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|Wine Making Kits||www.homebrewwest.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|Wine Making Equipment||www.homebrewwest.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|newbridge silverware shop||www.kilkennyshop.com||www.google.ie||2|
|stable doors for sale||www.crowesawmills.ie||www.google.ie||3|
|driving lessons santry||www.ingear.ie||www.google.ie||3|
|engagement rings dublin||www.perfectring.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|engagement rings ireland||www.perfectring.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|beer making kit||www.homebrewwest.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|beer brewing kit||www.homebrewwest.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|Driving lessons santry||www.ingear.ie/||www.google.ie||3|
|property agents cork||www.rose-property.com||www.google.ie||1|
|Property Management Cork||www.rose-property.com||www.google.ie||3|
|Property Management Companies Cork||www.rose-property.com||www.google.ie||3|
|virtual offices dublin||www.dublinofficecentre.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|dublin virtual office||www.dublinofficecentre.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|driving lessons raheny||www.ingear.ie||www.google.ie||3|
|driving lessons howth||www.ingear.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|seo companies cork||www.dpfoc.com/ireland||www.google.ie||3|
|antique engagement rings ireland||www.perfectring.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|white gold engagement rings ireland||www.perfectring.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|antique engagement rings||www.perfectring.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|eternity ring ireland||www.perfectring.ie||www.google.ie||3|
|larch timber ireland||www.crowesawmills.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|apartment block cleaning dublin||www.cleanscape.ie||www.google.ie||3|
|driving lessons baldoyle||www.ingear.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|driving lessons north dublin||www.ingear.ie||www.google.ie||3|
|orla kiely handbags||www.kilkennyshop.com||www.google.ie||2|
|sms marketing ireland||www.neonsms.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|wine kits ireland||www.homebrewwest.ie||www.google.ie||3|
|cork estate agents||www.rose-property.com||www.google.ie||2|
|estate agents cork||www.rose-property.com||www.google.ie||2|
|irish mohair throws||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|cashmere blend throw||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|irish knit scarves||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|irish made scarves||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|irish tea sets||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|hot water bottle ireland||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|irish knitted hats||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|irish wool blankets||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|wool blankets ireland||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|tea sets ireland||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|irish hot water bottle||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|irish baby blankets||www.avoca.ie||www.google.ie||3|
|irish farmers journal||www.farmersjournal.ie||www.google.ie||1|
|farm news ireland||www.farmersjournal.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|irish farming news||www.farmersjournal.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|farming news ireland||www.farmersjournal.ie||www.google.ie||2|
|farmers in ireland||www.farmersjournal.ie||www.google.ie||3|