What is SEO and How it Work?

We know, you know, everyone knows: SEO is important! But how exactly does search engine optimization work?

Search engine marketing is divided into two branches. On the one hand search engine advertising (SEA) and search engine optimization (SEO). While search engine advertising focuses on placing ads to generate traffic, search engine optimization is about getting users to your website through a better ranking.

What is SEO?

SEO – “Search engine optimization” stands for search engine optimization. Roughly speaking, it’s about designing your website so that search engines can find it easily.

The search engine should not only find them, but also find them really good. Because then she will suggest your website to users. The search engine is like a best friend that users trust. In order not to lose this trust, the search engine ensures that only websites that meet certain expectations are ranked particularly high. So you need to understand what your audience is looking for, what words they are using, and what content they want to see. 

What is special about SEO

Take Google as an example. If we as users found that Google did not answer our search query satisfactorily, then we no longer want to use Google and switch to other search engines. Therefore, Google has developed its own criteria to ensure that the user is only shown websites in the search results that are relevant. 

Google works with an algorithm to which changes are made on a daily basis. Most of these changes are small and have no noticeable impact on your SEO. A few times a year, however, there are also major updates that have had a significant impact on the algorithm, such as panda and penguin.

The goal for sustainable SEO is to recognize how search engines work exactly and to understand their language. Then all you have to do is translate your website into the language of the search engine. 

How does SEO work?

Search engines are nothing more than a large database. Crawlers or the bot “rummage” through various websites.

Every website has a crawling budget that has to be distributed across all subpages. Then the search engine indexes your website and feeds its database with the URLs. In the last step, the user enters a search query and the search engine ranks the answers according to the search intention. 

How does the search engine know which websites are relevant?

The search engine is based on the basic pillars: competence, relevance and trust. I.e. if you want to know how the human heart works you are more likely to ask a cardiologist than a car mechanic → competence. The information you then get must be relevant. So you don’t want to hear from the cardiologist how he cooks coq au vin. → Finally you should be able to believe the source → 3. Trust.

So that you convey competence, relevance and trust with your website, it is important to dedicate yourself to the topics of on-page and off-page optimization. OnPage is what can be changed and optimized on your website. OffPage is that which can be changed and optimized by external factors. Still need help optimizing your website, but can’t estimate the cost? Here comes help:

What is OnPage Optimization?

This part of SEO improves your ranking within the search engines through technical, content and structural adjustments on your website. This makes it easier for the search engine to crawl and index your website and it becomes easier for your customers to find, use and read. The aim is to answer your customers’ search query, to have short loading times, good content and meaningful navigation on your website. 

Technical SEO 

The technical optimization of your website ensures that the search engine can crawl your website better. This includes everything that makes the nerd’s heart beat faster: source code optimizations, programming languages, markup languages, internal link structure, page structure …

It is important that your technical SEO is good, otherwise it will be of little use if you optimize your content. If, while crawling, the search engine finds that it cannot read and process your content, it will not be indexed.

Content marketing

Good content is important for two reasons. On the one hand, search engines recognize stolen text or text that contains no information but only keywords – this has a negative impact on your SEO. Your goal should be to create content that is 10 times better than that of your competitors. If you want to know what is important, take a look at our blog article “ What is 10x content? ” on. 

Another reason is that you want to keep your customers on your website. The perfect content picks up your visitors, answers their questions, informs them, guides them skillfully through your site and automatically improves your ranking with relevant information.

User experience

The more comfortable the customer feels on your website, the longer they stay. Everyone feels “comfortable” differently, but the main thing is that you arouse behaviors and feelings. Because the feeling that your customer has on your website is transferred to your product.

Imagine you need apples and you go to the supermarket. The apples are at the back and it takes you an eternity from the entrance to the apple shelf. The supermarket is not only poorly lit, but also cold and there are three villains at the door.

This is an example of a bad user experience. For a good user experience, it is important to know who your customers are and what they are looking for on your site. But there are also factors that are generally the same for all websites. These include: short loading times, an attractive design, an SSL connection and fast routes. 

Also note that a large number of users are sitting on mobile devices rather than desktops. Your website should be optimized for mobile devices accordingly, if not, this will have a negative effect on the user experience. You can find more information about the user experience here .


The right keywords will help you drive users to your website through their search query. Your goal is to use keywords that are used frequently in searches but face little competition. In the past, the more a keyword was used, the higher the website ranked. Unfortunately, this also resulted in a better ranking of websites that met the keyword density, but unfortunately failed in terms of information density. 

Natural Language Processing

In order to satisfy the search query better and faster, Google implemented “NLP – Natural Language Processing”. NLP works with whole keyword chains and tries to capture and process human language. 

Master Search Intent

You know the keywords that are important to you. Now comes the next step. Every keyword has an intention. Either your customers want information about a process, something to buy or e.g. B. Compare two things. Understand the intent with which your audience is using the keywords you want to rank for. Why? Google recognizes which websites are clicked on most frequently for which keywords and ranks them according to the websites that best satisfy the search query.

What is OffPage Optimization?

Mama always taught us not to listen to the others, but for once it’s different here. OnPage optimization is mainly about: “What do the others think?” Who are the others The others are: other websites that share your links or, for example, reviews that you get. 

Link building

Link building consists of different parts.

  1. Links that link to yours from external websites (backlinks)
  2. Links on your website, on subpages of your website
  3. Links that you link from your website to external websites

Links that link to yours from external websites (backlinks):

Links that link to yours from external websites signal the search engine that your website is competent, as it provides knowledge that is of interest to others. You will remember that when competence, relevance and authority come together, your rankings improve.

How do you get these links? Sure, you can earn it through content. Your content is so good that others want to share or quote it. But you can also buy them. Some turn up their noses here, but in fact many guest article places and thus links are bought. What doesn’t work anymore is buying a bunch of bad links for a little money. Because search engines are clever and recognize that. Whoever decides should pay attention to quality. Websites that meet the criteria of expertise, competence, and trust are the ones you want to be linked from.

Links of your website, on sub-pages of your website:

Just like external links signal to search engines that the content on your website is relevant, so do internal links. At the same time, you can also improve the user experience with a good internal link structure. 

Links that you link from your website to external websites:

With links that lead from your website to another you can help your customers to get more information about your product or your services. You might also write a blog about Southeast Asia and link hotels or travel agencies in your articles. These links will help you to improve the user experience. 

Will the other websites then get the credit and possibly be ranked higher?

Since you can specifically choose which page you link to, the focus is on helping the search engine or bot to recognize what your website is about and which topic it fits. It signals to the search engine that your website is competent, which is important for good search engine optimization. 

For the search engine voting system, you should have a good mix of all links. Only external links bring you just as little further as only outgoing links. 

What’s coming in 2020

In the meantime, search engines are more like answer engines, because it is more and more about answering the user intent even faster and better. 

Zero click search  

Google developed the Zero Click Search. This means that immediately after entering the search field, the result appears for the user in the 1st position. They no longer have to click on a website to get the information they want. It is a great advantage for the searcher, because no sooner has the search term been entered than the result is already there. In September 2019 alone, that accounted for 56.10% of searches on mobile devices. 

Now it is time for companies to find a way to benefit from Zero Click Search. For this it is always important to create content that draws attention and leads the user to click on your website. 

Voice Search

“Google….?” “Siri … ..?” “Alexa, …?” Voice search is spreading more and more and does the last remaining “work” for users – typing the question into the search engine. 

When optimizing your website for search engines, you should consider how users will search in the future. In the background of your website, you can mark which areas are of interest for voice search. This is how the search engine recognizes what needs to be highlighted. Your FAQs are also helpful for the search engine, as they give faster answers to user intentions through W-questions. 

Longtail keywords, mobile device adaptability and the speed of your website are also important for voice search, but you should already have adjusted these factors for text search. 

What changes were there in 2019?

Medic update

Another change came with the Medic Update. Or your money your life. Medic stems from the fact that many websites with a medical background were affected by strong fluctuations. Not only was the Google algorithm at work here, but the Google guidelines were also checked. This includes B. OnPage what does the website structure look like or does the content represent competence? OffPage were z. B. Reviews checked. 

Keywords & link building

We already mentioned that what will definitely no longer work in 2020 is buying a bunch of bad links and thus achieving a better ranking. The times are over. Likewise the time in which you only searched for a few keywords, stuffed the text with them and was successful. The user comes first and does not want bad links or texts that contain keywords but no information.


For a successful search engine optimization, different components have to work as a cog. Do you care B. only about link building and neglecting content you will not get any further. If you focus on the technology in the background, but the user experience is wrong, that won’t help you either. You need one thing above all:

Teamwork! Good search engine optimization is only possible if all involved SEO managers, UX / UI designers work together on a strategy.


5 SEO Tips for Business Leaders

Search engine optimization is often seen as a mystical marketing channel. SEO managers who wave their magic wand and celebrate monthly sacrificial festivals to land higher in the organic search. We have put together a short list so that the managing directors of a company can better understand their SEOs, but also check their skills.

1. “… But that’s design and not SEO!”

When we work with a new customer and define initial measures, we have the following scenario in 9 out of 10 cases:

“Some actions involve design changes. Isn’t that SEO? “

Even if some have already announced it before me, I don’t want to miss the opportunity to say it again:

Search engine optimization has evolved.

Did you know that the click-through rate on a page has become an important ranking signal? The bounce rate and the time spent on a page are largely responsible for a good ranking. These are all “user” signals and have nothing to do with link building, internal linking (which is important) and the like. to do.

2. Website speed

Speed ​​decides. For SEO, as well as your “sales” in general. Almost half of all Internet users expect a website to load within 2 seconds. If your SEO manager has already asked you about the loading time of your website, this was not just blind action, it was completely correct.

Is that the case with you?

You can test it here:

To get specific action, take the speed test on Google:

If you stay below 60 out of a possible 100 points in the Google query, you must speak to your programmers as soon as possible to improve the speed of the website. Believe me, your SEO will thank you!

3. Results

Every person who promises me magical SEO results within a very short time has a difficult one on me. Because it’s a lie 99% of the time. This person is either trying to kid me or just has no idea. Both are not great.

The bottom line here is: give your SEOs time. Good results take time. Often months. The worst move would be to throw a measure over board after a few weeks because it has not yet achieved any results.

Here are two more technical tips:

4. Pagination

Pagination is a scroll function. When listing articles, there is often a link to a page 2, 3, 4, etc. Your SEO manager has to consider a few things here. To do this, go to a second page on your website.


Right-click anywhere on the page (not images) and select “Show Page Source”. You should then see the source text of this page in your browser.

Press CTRL + F on a Windows computer and CMD + F on a Mac to open the search.

Here you enter the following commands one after the other:

rel = ”next”
noindex, follow


If neither the phrase rel = ”next” nor noindex, follow can be found, we suggest that you recommend this link to your SEO

5. HTML headings

Google identifies headings as a classification of content. The headings are referred to as H1-H6. The lower the number, the more important it is. This means that H2 receives more weighting for the ranking than H6.

Frequency of headings per page:
H1 = 1
H2 = 1-7
H3 – H6 = there is no defined limit here.

Go to your home page or any page on your website.

Right-click anywhere on the page (not images) and select “Show Page Source”. You have landed once again in the source code of this page.

On a Windows computer, press CTRL + F or CMD + F if you have a Mac. A search box has now opened.

Enter the following commands in the search one after the other:



If none of these phrases are found, you should have a conversation with your SEO. Because he obviously didn’t wave the wand long enough. If commands are found, pay attention to the frequency.


Why Your Business Should Invest in SEO?

A search engine is a marketplace

All of your competitors can be found on this online marketplace. Imagine you are selling potatoes in a potato market. Your competition also sells potatoes. So why should customers buy your potatoes and not those of your competitors?

In the potato market, you would stand up and loudly proclaim the benefits of your products, thereby attracting the attention of potential customers. It works similarly with search engine optimization:

The search engines analyze your website and that of your competitors . It evaluates the websites on the basis of hundreds of parameters such as content, design, compatibility with mobile devices, structure, links, text / image ratio, visitor numbers, bounce rates, click rates and so on. Those website operators who do this job well can move up in the search engine ranking and thus appear higher up on the search engine results list ( SERP ).

SEO then and now

Previously, search engine optimization very easy. By simply adding a few keywords as so-called meta information, the website was categorized globally and the search engines were able to classify and find the pages with the help of these keywords . Example of such meta information:

<meta name = "keywords" content = "keyword 1, keyword 2, keyword 3" />

Details : Provides keywords or topics that appear or are dealt with on the website. The keywords are separated from one another by commas; to improve human readability, a space is often inserted after the comma.

However, this concept showed weaknesses: The website operators quickly began to create many copies of the same website on the Internet and to use different keywords for each copy. This “flooded” the Internet with website copies and the quality of search engine results decreased. From a search engine point of view, this is a disaster. Because it is their job to deliver the search results that promise exactly the content that the searcher expects. The perfect answer to every search query. For this reason, Google started early not to pay attention to the keyword metas but to semantically analyze the content of a website and also to recognize website copies.

Today the search engines recognize and punish the old meta keyword optimizations and operators who run copies of the same website . Anyone who creates website copies with heaps of keywords risks being completely undetectable (deleted from the index). That’s a good thing! This increases the quality of the content on the website and the probability that search engine hits contain valuable information is much higher. This increases the findability of information for all of us. But it also increases the workload for the website operator. Because time has to be invested in creating high quality content.

Why does SEO cost money?

In order for a website to be found on the Internet, the operator of the site has to give a lot of thought to the content and structure . This means that time and money have to be invested to meet modern SEO requirements . Because anyone who receives a wage at the end of a month has to create content (text, graphics, links, etc.) and enter it on the website. This can be an internal employee or an external contractor (content writer).

Can’t you just copy texts + images from the Internet together?

You quickly get the idea of ​​copying texts and images from the Internet and changing them easily. A very bad idea! Because the search engine algorithms are extremely clever these days. They not only recognize the semantics of a text but also build a logical structure of the document. A digital fingerprint of the content. If there is too great a resemblance to other content, then there is a devaluation and a laboriously copied and modified content can even have a negative effect on the search engine ranking of your website!

Images may also not simply be copied. Most images are legally protected and if they are used without the consent of the rights holder, lawsuits and fines are threatened.

Do-It-Yourself instructions

What exactly is done in SEO – search engine optimization?

Basically everyone can do SEO themselves. You can work out a lot on your own. In the following we explain in detail an approach how you can carry out SEO yourself:

What are my Unique Selling Points?

With  SEO, your unique selling points ( Unique  Selling  Propositions, USPs) are highlighted. You can ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What is my strength?
    (Price, speed, quality, range of functions, uniqueness)
  2. Is a special procedure applied
    (energy efficient, ecological, fair trade, etc.)
  3. Is my product * easier to use or is it otherwise more convenient?
  4. What are my outstanding services?
    (Guarantees, advice, services)
  5. What is the value of my brand? Am I an innovation leader or a market leader in my industry?
Define terms

What  search terms  –  keywords  – do your potential customers use to search for your company, your offers and services?

Tip : As a first approximation, use Google Trends,  for example,  to find out whether there is a search volume in Switzerland for certain terms.

Example : You make white chocolate polar bears. Presumably only very few will search specifically for “white chocolate polar bears” but rather for “chocolate animals”. The two words correspond to a search term or a so-called  keyword . This keyword can now be worded differently:

  • Chocolate animals
  • Chocolate animals
  • Chocolate animals
  • Chocolate animal
  • Chocolate animals
  • Chocolate animals
  • etc.

Keyword analysis and Competitor analysis

Now you need to find out with which search terms your potential customers are looking for products that are similar to your product. This can be very time-consuming. Because if you do this job conscientiously, you will visit all the websites of all your competitors and check how your competition has already solved this problem. If you are using the exact same keywords as your competition, then you will need to create more and better content so that your website can win over your competition in search engine results.

The better you incorporate a  competition analysis into your strategy, the more effective the resulting  SEO measures will be.

Structure and organize terms

Once you have found suitable terms, you need to structure and organize them. You arrange them, for example, according to the estimated search volume and put them in relation to the relevance for your products. The following questions arise:

  1. Which  keywords  are important to you?
  2. How well do which keywords fit which   products?
  3. Are certain  keywords  mutually exclusive?
  4. Are there  keywords under which you do not want to be found under any circumstances, because they could even damage your business?

The result is a larger list of terms that you can use to create content.

Defining content

Define  which products and services content should be created for . As a rule, these are first and foremost the offers with which you can earn the most money with the least effort ( cash cows ). This results in a list of websites to be created.

Content writing

Create content (text + images)

Now the hard work: Based on the information obtained above, a content writer must create so-called organic content. Organic means that these may not be copied from other websites and must have their own characteristics. When writing this content, the previously researched terms must be listed in the correct places (headings, texts, image descriptions, meta fields) in the correct order and in sufficient quantity, but not too often. Here must  Keyword Stuffing be avoided!

It is best to use your own graphics or even symbols and illustrations you have created yourself to describe your product clearly and understandably.

Video productions and Social signaling

Create  product or explanation videos . You can upload these videos to popular video platforms and link them to your website. This is also SEO  and is called  social signaling  (term from behavioral biology). Potential customers who find your video will be aware of your offers via the video commentary or via the content of the video, visit your website and contact you.

Videos can of course also be shared on various platforms (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) and embedded on the website. This can also reinforce social signals.

An  increasing number of visitors  to your website  with the help of social signals has a positive effect on the search engine ranking .

What exactly is he doing “SEO expert”?

The SEO expert supports and advises you at every stage of the entire SEO process .

At  Brand AdvoKates you determine how much personal work you would like to do. Because every company has different options and preferences:

Larger companies often have one or more marketing employees. They can perform many of the activities described above internally. These companies buy specific know-how from us. For example, our SEO experts analyze supplied by the marketing team content on their SEO compatibility with the current rules of the search engine provider (keyword density, link density, inbound/outbound linking, keyword selection, keyword placement, backlinking on the contents etc.). Our experts use a variety of tools and years of experience for this.

Medium-sized companies that do not have their own marketing department usually book the full SEO spectrum with us: the creation of analyzes, templates and content, and even the inclusion of content on the company website.

Smaller companies  are usually happy to receive support in the field of keyword analysis, but want to write the content themselves. Usually this is done by apprentices or interns on the basis of our analyzes and specifications / templates. The boss then optimizes these according to his wishes.

In the following article we explain in detail what exactly our specialists can do for you. We are happy to assist you with our professional know-how and years of experience!