Position your site sustainably on search engines!
Is Google natural referencing still a mystery to you? Here are the 21 questions that will allow you to know everything about the referencing of your website!
Natural referencing, or SEO (Search Engine Optimization), encompasses all the methods and techniques that aim to position the web pages of your website in the first natural results of search engines (especially Google, but also Bing, Yahoo, and others).
This to improve the visibility of the pages in question, by applying a series of « rules » laid down by the search engines.
Because there are more than 1 billion websites on the Internet and Google has indexed some 30 trillion pages.
When an Internet user launches a search on the Web, the only way to make a page visible to them is to optimize it by applying the rules of the search engine.
You can have the most beautiful site in the world, but without the SEO of your website, it is likely to remain invisible.
Natural SEO allows you to attract qualified traffic to your web pages, which can be converted into prospects and then into customers. So that optimizing your natural SEO can capture the attention of those who are interested in the type of services/products you offer. This traffic generated by Google referencing is sustainable over the long term. Unlike a traditional advertising campaign, whose effects stop as soon as you stop injecting money, SEO continues to attract traffic (and generate profits) even when you no longer optimize it.
As its name suggests, the objective of natural referencing is to position pages in the so-called « natural » results, or « organic links », of SERPs (search engine results pages).
This positioning is obtained without having to pay money to the search engine, contrary to what happens with paid referencing (SEA).
This consists of buying keywords to place « sponsored links » at the top of the SERPs, for example by launching a Google AdWords campaign.
Because Google is the most used search engine in the world. Its market share varies between 75 and 95% depending on the country: in France, more than 93% of the Internet users use this search engine as a priority.
To work on its natural referencing, it is thus to give itself all the chances to make its web pages visible to the eyes of the Net surfers.
Google indexes billions of pages every day and classifies them to position them in its results. Before indexing, there is the « crawl »: the exploration of all web pages by Google’s robots.
If the conditions are met, a page is indexed – stored in the database. It will then be positioned in the results.
This positioning is done according to the pages relevance concerning the requests made by Internet users. For example, if someone searches for a « natural referencing agency » on Google, they will get in response, the pages that best meet his request.
To decide which pages are relevant, and which pages are not, Google has set up several hundred criteria: it is these criteria that Google’s natural referencing aims to apply.
With more than 200 optimization criteria, Google natural referencing requires know-how, experience… and time!
A website SEO strategy only gives results in the long term: between the SEO audit, the definition of an action plan, the implementation, the work on the pages, the publication of contents, and the net linking, it takes on average 6 months to start getting positive effects. But later, these effects are long-lasting.
In short, natural SEO is similar to a diesel engine: long to start, but effective over time!
Optimizing your website referencing implies using a large number of levers (more than 200) which correspond to the criteria set up by Google.
To help webmasters get started, the search engine provides a Google SEO Guide – but don’t expect to find the secrets to successful optimization in it! These are mostly basics.
On-site natural referencing includes all the elements related to the web pages themselves:
These elements more or less impact the natural referencing of a page, but they contribute at least to its good indexing and/or to the improvement of its visibility.
The off-site natural referencing called Net linking concerns the elements external to the web pages:
The engine of Google off-page natural referencing is quality: a page that appeals to Internet users will more easily get inbound links and will see its popularity increase; 10 backlinks from a few influential sites are more important than 100 backlinks from sites with a bad reputation, etc.
The choice of keywords depends on your sector of activity and your needs.
Keywords are selected according to their popularity (the number of times they have been requested by Internet users) and their competitiveness.
If it is difficult to position oneself on generic keywords in certain sectors (e.g. « SEO agency »), natural referencing on « long tail » keywords may be easier – and generate more qualified traffic.
Many tools allow you to choose your keywords, including the Google keyword planning tool.
The « long tail » defines key phrases of more than 4 or 5 words. It allows you to position yourself on more precise and more qualifying requests, for example, « SEO agency located in Paris » rather than « SEO agency ».
These more specific keywords are less popular but also less competitive, and allow for a better positioning; moreover, they have a better conversion rate.
Note that very fashionable voice search, favors « long tail » queries. An adapted Google referencing is therefore recommended.
The « long tail SEO » brings 80% traffic and higher quality traffic.
Google’s algorithms are programmed to provide users with the most relevant results. To this end, they are constantly evolving as Google updates them. Some are minor (mobile compatibility, https protocol) and do not produce an earthquake in the positions of sites. Others are considered major because they significantly change Google’s natural referencing and positioning criteria. For example:
These algorithms not only check the relevance of natural referencing. They also aim to penalize sites that use abusive SEO techniques.
The penalties for referencing on Google result from updates to the algorithms. The Penguin penalty, for example, is a filter that punishes sites displaying poor quality backlinks.
The Panda Penalty attacks sites whose content does not meet the expected quality standards (typically: keyword lists). These penalties are not only algorithmic: they can be manual, decided by Google engineers.
A penalized site can go from the first position in the SERPs to the 20th page in the blink of an eye and vegetate in the depths until the problem is solved! In its basic guidelines for webmasters, Google lists a list of techniques to avoid being penalized.
How do you know if your site or some of your pages have been sanctioned because of abusive Google referencing? You will know it:
The cost of referencing your website depends on many factors (sector of activity, needs, competition, objectives, size of the site). The budget can only be determined after a thorough SEO analysis taking into account all these factors. Nevertheless, count around €15,000 per year for an SME (average budget), and up to several thousand euros per month for large accounts.
An SEO audit is an essential prerequisite for any Google natural referencing strategy: it allows you to determine the best possible action plan based on many factors specific to your business and your website. An SEO audit analyzes in particular:
An SEO audit must be based on tools specific to the technical issues analyzed but the strategy must remain the responsibility of the SEO consultant.
There is no generic SEO strategy, no secret recipe that would work for all sites. The SEO audit is the only way to build a suitable strategy.
Since SEO aims to improve the visibility of a website in order to increase its traffic, it is essential to be able to measure the volume of this traffic. This is the sine qua non condition to evaluate the effectiveness of your SEO campaigns and, if necessary, to correct possible blocking points. Some of the preferred monitoring indicators include:
Many tools exist to measure its traffic, such as Google Analytics.
A variation of Google natural referencing, local referencing aims to position itself in response to a localized request, generally accompanied by a city name. For example: « Agence Référencement Naturel Paris ».
The goal is to reach local customers when they are looking for information about a service or product.
Knowing that 25% of all searches on Google are local and that 88% of localized searches made from a smartphone result in an action (phone call, physical visit) within 24 hours.
Google’s natural referencing requires specialized skills, specific know-how and constant monitoring of changes in the criteria set by search engines.
Unless you have an in-house SEO team, it is more efficient and cost-effective to use an external service provider (an SEO agency) for the referencing of your website.
Do you want to work on your natural Google referencing internationally in order to reach an even wider audience? To achieve this, you need to:
Natural referencing, or SEO (Search Engine Optimization), encompasses all the methods and techniques that aim to position the web pages of your website in the first natural results of search engines.
The first results appear between 4 and 12 months after the start of the SEO service according to Google. To consolidate its positions, SEO must be considered over the very long term.
The cost of an SEO strategy varies depending on the scope of the work and the competitiveness of your market and keywords. The average budget for an SME is 15,000 euros per year.