11 SEO FAQs Answered by PR & Marketing Professionals

May 16, 2022

What is SEO? Why does my business need it? What are its benefits? These are just a few of the SEO FAQs we encounter when helping our clients to achieve the fame and fortune they deserve.


Get SEO wrong and there could be negative consequences for your website and its reach. Get it right, and you’ll attract an audience to your business for free: SEO brings 1000%+ times more traffic than organic social media.


Our team at Liaison is composed of SEO specialists, social media experts, ex-journalists, and PR professionals, so we all understand the importance of getting SEO right and are perfectly placed to answer common questions on the subject. That’s why we’ve compiled our answers to the 11 SEO FAQs we see time and time again.


Read on to learn more about SEO, and don’t forget to get in touch for tailored advice on your website, social, and SEO strategy.

FAQ 1: What is SEO?

SEO stands for search engine optimization. Put simply, it’s the process of optimizing your website to rank higher on a search engine’s results page. The higher up your website appears, the more people are likely to see and interact with your website.


Good SEO is the result of several practices, including using effective keywords, writing a compelling title and meta description, internal linking, and generally being a trustworthy destination for your audience. At Liaison, we use tools like Semrush to research content that will help you climb the Google search rankings and become a trusted voice in your industry.


FAQ 2: Does my business need SEO?

Yes. Organic search is responsible for the vast majority of total site traffic across the internet, so it’s important you rank highly on search engines. If you’re ignoring SEO, then your competitors are enjoying all the traffic from your audience.


FAQ 3: What are the benefits of SEO?

With SEO, you can increase traffic to your website. You’ll be charged for every click that comes to your website via a pay-per-click ad, but if your website ranks organically on the search engines through SEO, all your traffic is essentially free.

FAQ 4: How long does it take to rank on Google?

There’s no denying it, Google is how the majority of planet earth searches the web, so it’s key that you consider how it operates. It typically takes between six months and a year to rank on Google, but this is very much based on the level of resources you allocate to your strategy and the competition involved. It might only take a few months to rank for a local term (e.g., plumber in Portland), whereas it could take years to rank a new website for, let’s say, the term “laptops.”


Google’s John Mueller also recently said that it could take up to a year for them to figure out where a new site should rank, and that fluctuations are expected during this timeframe.


FAQ 5: Why has my organic traffic dropped?

There are a few reasons why you might notice a drop in organic traffic on your website. If you do notice a drop, the first thing you need to do is figure out whether organic traffic has decreased suddenly or gradually over time. If your organic traffic has dropped suddenly…

  • Check if your website has index tags added, accidentally not adding these could be the cause.
  • Find out if Google deems your site potentially harmful to users, this could mean your site has been hacked. Tools like web.dv are helpful to a request a review and get to the bottom of these issues.

If your organic traffic has dropped gradually…

  • Google may have rolled out a core algorithm update that has allowed rival sites gain traffic and rank above yours. Find out what you can do to get back in the game.
  • It’s more likely that your competitors have started using a more aggressive SEO strategy than you, and they’ve overtaken your organic visibility. Find out what’s working for them and see if you can emulate it.


FAQ 6: What are Google’s most important ranking factors?

Well, according to Google’s John Mueller, you should focus on “awesomeness.” In other words, the quality of your content is by far the most important thing. This means you want to put your online presence in the hands of people that are skilled in the art of content and are very knowledgeable about your industry. It’s worth remembering that important ranking factors are ever-shifting thanks to Google’s regular algorithm updates – but great, unique content is forever!

FAQ 7: How long should my content be?

When creating content, it’s best to look at what already ranks high on the search engines. Try to Google your target keyword using Incognito mode, and analyze the top search results to understand the page’s intent and the approximate length of the articles. This is the best way to figure out how long your own article that targets the same keyword should be. As a general rule of thumb, the best content should be the most useful to your audience. The longer and more in-depth, the better.


FAQ 8: What’s the difference between on-page, off-page, and technical SEO?

SEO is generally divided into three major categories, on-page, off-page, and technical. On-page is everything you do on your website and the content itself. Off-page is anything beyond your website, think external links and social media. Technical has to do with the inner workings of your website. Here’s a great graph by Semrush that offers a bit more information.


FAQ 9: What are the biggest mistakes I can make with SEO?

There are a lot of potential pitfalls with SEO. Ignoring the technical stuff can be a big one, so it’s really important that you keep on top of any server problems or site performance issues. Regularly having technical difficulties with your website is sure to negatively affect your audience’s trust in you.


It’s also important to make sure that you optimize the meta tags for all your website’s content. The meta title and meta description help search engines to connect you with the right audience, so it’s vital that you tailor them to your desired audience and include your chosen keywords. Search engines will automatically generate these meta tags if you don’t do anything with them, but you run the risk of missing out on traffic.


Conducting regular site audits will also help to ensure that you’re not making any big mistakes when it comes to your SEO. Using a site auditing tool can make this often time-consuming process much easier, helping to find broken links, identify pages that aren’t mobile friendly (a big factor in SEO), and gather all manner of other useful site data.

FAQ 10: Why is my Google Analytics data different from my Semrush data?

The main difference between these two platforms is that Google Analytics is an internal service for studying your own website, while Semrush and tools like it are external services for studying another website and creating an SEO strategy. If you only want to analyze your own website traffic without comparing it with others, it would be far more helpful to look at your Google Analytics.


If you notice discrepancies in traffic numbers between each platform, this is due to the fact that they gather their data in different ways. Regardless, it’s important that you only use this data as a guide and don’t get too hung up on the numbers.


FAQ 11: Are pdf files bad for SEO?

PDFs can be crawled as though they are web pages by search engines. However, in most cases, they lack information found on standard web pages. Google can still index them, but they don’t give the search engine everything it desires when analyzing and ranking pages. The same goes for Word or Excel documents. Search engine bots can crawl, index, and rank them, but they lack the data needed to boost your SEO.



Ready for a more tailor-made SEO strategy that’s unique to you? Get in touch with our team today to learn more about how we can help.