What Are the 3 Main Areas of SEO?


  August 14th, 2023


In the rapidly evolving digital landscape, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) has become a cornerstone for small businesses looking to make a mark online. But what exactly does SEO entail? It’s more than just keywords and links; it’s about enhancing your online presence and connecting with your audience.

SEO can be boiled down to 3 major areas or “pillars”:

  1. Technical SEO
  2. On-page SEO (content)
  3. Off-page SEO (backlinks)

For businesses and marketers alike, understanding the three main areas of SEO can help understand where to put your efforts and ultimately boost online visibility, attract more customers, and lead to meaningful growth.

In the article below we’ll explore these 3 areas in more detail.

1. Technical SEO

What is Technical SEO?

Technical SEO refers to the nitty-gritty aspects that enhance a website’s overall functionality and user experience. This includes ensuring a responsive design, faster loading times, XML sitemaps, and proper indexing. These factors might seem trivial but play a crucial role in how search engines like Google rank your site. By focusing on these elements, businesses ensure that both search engines and users can easily navigate and enjoy their site.

How to Get Started with Technical SEO

Technical SEO involves optimising your website’s technical aspects of SEO to help search engines crawl and index it. Here are some key elements:

  • Page load speed: Your website needs to be quick. Slow-loading speed can frustrate users and negatively impact your search position in Google rankings.
  • Mobile-friendliness: More people are browsing the web on their phones than ever. If your site isn’t mobile-friendly, you’re turning away many potential visitors.
  • Header response, redirects, and duplicate content: These technical elements can impact how search engines interpret your site and affect your visibility in search results.
  • XML Sitemap, Robots.txt, meta noindex, & meta nofollow: These are like the road signs for search engines, guiding them through your site and telling them what to pay attention to.
  • Security: A secure site is a trusted site, both for users and search engines. Implementing HTTPS is a must.
  • Implement Structured Data: Structure data helps search engines understand the context of your content.

Technical SEO might seem daunting (unless you have an appetite for web development and HTML, getting a trusted developer to action these tasks for you is always a good idea), but investing in it can lead to a better user experience and higher search engine rankings.

2. On-Page SEO (Content)

What Is On-Page SEO?

On-Page SEO focuses on optimising individual web pages to rank higher in search engines. This includes using relevant keywords, meta tags, headers, and crafting high-quality, engaging content that resonates with your audience.

On-Page SEO is all about the content management on your site. It’s what your visitors see and interact with, and it plays a crucial role in how search engines understand and rank your site. Key elements include:

  • Title tags and meta descriptions are the first things users see in search results. They should be compelling and accurately describe the content of the page.
  • Body Content: Your content should be high-quality, relevant, and provide value to your audience. It should also include your core keywords where appropriate.
  • Alt attributes, URL structure, and Schema & Markup: These elements help search engines understand your content and can improve your visibility in search results.

The Art of Content Marketing

Content is king, and the art of content marketing lies in creating valuable and relevant content that speaks to your target audience. By understanding what your readers want and incorporating strategic keywords, you can turn mere content into SEO-driven success stories. For more insights, explore our SEO services.

The Importance of Internal Linking

Internal linking refers to the practice of linking one page of your website to another page within the same domain. It’s a powerful tool in your on-page SEO toolkit and serves several essential functions:

  • Enhancing User Navigation: Internal links guide visitors through your site, leading them from general information to more specific content. It makes navigation intuitive and encourages them to explore more of what your business has to offer.
  • Spreading Link Equity: Internally linked pages share link value, helping to boost the rank of other pages within your site. This even distribution of ‘link juice’ can positively affect your overall site ranking.
  • Supporting Website Hierarchy: Internal linking helps search engines understand the relationship and hierarchy between different pages, enabling them to index your site more efficiently.

Local SEO Matters

If your business caters to a specific locality, focusing on Local SEO can give you an edge. Whether it’s a café in Melbourne or a boutique in Brisbane, optimising your site for local searches helps you connect with the community. Learn how Local SEO can make a difference.

3. Off-page SEO (Link Building)

Introduction to Off-Page SEO

Off-page SEO goes beyond your website, focusing on building your online reputation through external links. When other credible sites link to yours, it sends positive signals to search engines, building your site’s authority and trustworthiness. Off-page SEO is like a word-of-mouth recommendation in the digital world, and it can work wonders for your online credibility.

Off-Page SEO is about building your website’s reputation and domain authority on SEO. It involves activities away from your site but contributes to your search engine rankings. This includes:

  • Content marketing & link building: By creating valuable content and promoting it effectively, backlink building from other reputable sites can boost your site’s authority and rankings.
  • Identify & understand your linking & sharing audience: Knowing who is likely to link to and share your content can help you tailor your content and promotion strategies for maximum impact.
  • Map your assets to specific keywords: You can increase your visibility in search results by aligning your content with the relevant keywords your audience is searching for.

Strategies for Effective Link Building

Link building is an art that requires careful planning and strategic execution. Here’s how to get started:

  • Create Shareable Content: If your content is engaging and valuable, others will naturally want to link to it.
  • Build Relationships: Network with other businesses and bloggers within your industry to foster natural link sharing.
  • Use Social Media: Sharing your content on social platforms can increase visibility and encourage linking.
  • Guest Blogging: Contributing content to other blogs can create opportunities for backlinking.

Link building can be a powerful tool but also comes with challenges. Weigh the pros and cons of SEO before you dive in.

Additional Areas of SEO Knowledge You Should Master

Tracking & Analytics

Knowing where your traffic is coming from and how users are interacting with your site is crucial. Utilise tools like Google Analytics to track visitor behaviour, conversion rates, and more. This data-driven approach helps you make informed decisions and continually refine your strategy.

Indexing & Crawling

Search engines use crawlers to read and index your site. Making your site easily crawlable and properly indexed ensures it appears in search results. Consider aspects like proper URL structure, sitemaps, and avoiding duplicate content.


Clean and well-structured HTML helps search engines understand your content better. Using proper headings, tags, and attributes not only enhances readability but also improves your SEO ranking.

E-E-A-T (Expertise, Experience, Authority, Trustworthiness)

E-E-A-T is vital in Google’s assessment of a website. Focus on showcasing your expertise, building authority through credible backlinks, and creating a trustworthy site through transparent practices. Here are three ways to instantly improve your website’s E-E-A-T:

  • Create author bios for your articles
  • Ensure you’re linking to credible sources when writing your articles
  • Build tons of content on the same subject to become a Topical Authority

Competitor Research

Understanding what your competitors are doing right (and wrong) in their SEO strategy can provide valuable insights. Analyse their backlinks, keywords, and content strategy to find opportunities for your own site.

Audience Research

Knowing your audience inside and out allows you to create content that resonates with them. Conduct surveys, use analytics, and engage on social media to learn what your audience really wants.

Mobile SEO

With a growing number of searches happening on mobile devices, mobile SEO can’t be ignored. Ensure your site is responsive, fast, and offers an excellent mobile experience. 

How to Monitor and Measure SEO Results

Implementing SEO strategies is like planting a garden. You’ve put in the hard work and are now waiting for the flowers to bloom. But how do you know if your efforts are paying off? That’s where monitoring and measuring your SEO results come in. Let’s look at some key metrics:

Keyword Rankings

Keyword rankings show where your website ranks in search engine results for target keywords. If you’re ranking high for target keywords, it’s a good sign that your SEO strategies are working. But remember, SEO is a marathon, not a sprint. It can take time to climb the ranks.

Organic Search Traffic

Organic traffic refers to visitors who land on your website through unpaid search results. It’s like foot traffic in a shop – the more you have, the better. An increase in organic traffic indicates that your site is becoming more visible in search queries and attracting more visitors.

Organic Leads & Sales

The ultimate goal of SEO is not just to attract visitors to your site but to convert those visitors into customers. By tracking organic leads and sales, you can measure the real impact of your SEO efforts on your bottom line.

Monitoring these metrics can give you valuable insights into the effectiveness of your SEO strategies and help you make data-driven decisions to improve your online success. So, keep an eye on your business, nurture it, and watch it bloom!

Key Takeaways

SEO is not just a one-time task but an ongoing process that demands attention to various facets. Here’s a quick recap of what we’ve explored:

  • Technical SEO: Ensuring your site functions smoothly and is user-friendly.
  • On-Page SEO: Crafting high-quality, engaging content with the right keywords.
  • Off-Page SEO: Building authority and trust through external links.
  • Additional Areas of Mastery: From tracking analytics to mobile optimisation, these areas fine-tune your SEO strategy.

SEO can be complex, but understanding these areas sets you on the right path towards online success.

The Most Important SEO Factor to Get Right: Taking Action

Understanding SEO is one thing, but implementing it is where real growth happens. SEO is not a set-and-forget strategy; it requires continuous effort, learning, and adaptation.

  • Assess Your Current State: Know where you stand and identify areas for improvement.
  • Set Clear Goals: Whether it’s increasing traffic, boosting sales, or building brand awareness, clear objectives guide your strategy.
  • Invest in Professional Support if Needed: Sometimes, a professional touch can make all the difference. Consider exploring our comprehensive Brisbane SEO services.
  • Monitor and Adjust: Keep an eye on analytics, track performance, and be ready to make changes as needed.


SEO is a dynamic and multifaceted field that offers tremendous opportunities for small business owners and marketing managers looking to grow online. Whether you’re new to SEO or looking to refine your existing strategy, understanding these core areas can lead you to success. 

Remember, SEO isn’t a set-and-forget strategy. It’s a continuous process of optimisation, analysis, and adaptation. It’s about understanding your audience, delivering value, and building a strong online presence. And while it might seem like a lot to handle, you’re not alone in this journey.

At Ape-X SEO and PPC Services, we’re here to guide you through the digital jungle. With our expertise in SEO and digital marketing, we can help you achieve your goals and reach new heights of success. Let’s start your SEO adventure today!

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Desiree Abbariao

Desiree is a dedicated SEO content writer with a knack for creativity and a relentless pursuit of success. She has found her niche in the world of SEO and digital marketing, helping her clients enhance their online presence.

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