What is a SERP (Search Engine Results Page)?

What is a SERP (Search Engine Results Page)?

Table of Contents:

In this article you would learn:

What is a SERP (Search Engine Results Page) or What does SERP stand for?

SERP i.e. Search engine results page is the page you see after entering a query into Google, Yahoo, or any other search engine. Having your website site links on SERP is an important part of SEO Process.

I run a query in a search engine the page shows up that is a SERP so here’s an example of a SERP for the word avocados. I have queried the word avocados and Google and it delivers me this page. Now there’s a lot of interesting things going on in modern SERPs. So, for example, we see some organic links right so the organic links would be the top result on the page as well as that Wikipedia article.

What is SERP example 1

We see the ‘People also ask’ box and which has some little dropdowns and some additional questions.

Some ‘top stories’ from the news and then we see a knowledge panel on the right-hand side of the screen. So, there’s a lot of interesting things going on in modern SERPs and we must ask ourselves is there anything we can learn just by looking at the page.

About what type of query this is. Now let’s alter our query just slightly and see what happens so here I’m looking at avocados with an ‘S’ but what if I remove the ‘S’ and just look at the word avocado. Well now see that Wikipedia article moves to the top the 12 proven health benefits article moves down from there. So basically, we’ve had the second result become the first result and the first result become the second result.

What is SERP example 2

We see the “People also ask” questions have changed the top stories and some of the images and then over on the right-hand side some changes are noticed. So have a relook at the above 2 images, a slight change looks at the top stories slight changes so minor changes in the search queries can have a not insignificant change to the way the results are displayed.

Let’s do another change so here I’ve looked at ‘avocado calories’ so I’ve added an additional component to this query and that search engine result page or SERP has changed fairly dramatically so here we see a little calculator by the looks of it that say it’s from the USDA we see that ‘People also Ask’ box has different queries in it the organic results are pushed down to the bottom of the page.

What is SERP example 3

Over there and then everything that shows up in the knowledge panel on the right-hand side. We are now missing some images and a lot more nutritional facts are shown.

So now with a new query, let’s make another change ‘avocado toast’, I use the same word ‘avocado’ add the word ‘toast’ to it now the entire page changes.

All we see are recipes. There’s a lot of images that show up some with star ratings in the results. There are some images on the right-hand side that are purely looking at ‘avocado toast’.

What is SERP example 3

Search Intent

When we look at SERPs (search engine result pages), what we want to be paying attention to is what shows up. What changes with minor changes in those different search queries and if we can try to derive.

SERP - Search Intent

This is ‘Search Intent’. Search intent is the way or the intent that the person has when they’re running the query.

What is it that they want to learn or see or do by completing that query and so we want to assess search intent you can see amongst all those different examples were used with minor variations the search intent changed?

Search Engine Results Page (SERP) Features and Its Layout

You can’t do SEO without analysing a ton of SERPs search engine result pages. It’s important to understand the different elements of the SERP and how or why information shows up in each of the different areas. Here I will walk through the various elements that might show up on a SERP depending on the phrase that’s being searched at the top of the page.

We’ll see the paid results, typically you’ll see four ads and if multiple ad extensions are showing this might be all you see above the fold for more competitive terms. You might also see a block of AdWords ads at the bottom of the page.

The SERP will also show the standard ten blue links the organic results that you’re targeting with your SEO efforts those are the basics. They’re present on nearly every search you’ll possibly try beyond the standard organic and paid listings you could also see any combination of the following 12 elements.

 

Types of SERP Layouts

  1. Featured Snippets
  2. Shopping Results
  3. Site Links
  4. Image Packs
  5. In-Depth Articles
  6. Knowledge Card
  7. Knowledge Panel
  8. Local Pack
  9. News Box
  10. Related Questions
  11. Tweets
  12. Videos
Featured Snippets - SERP features
Featured snippets - SERP

02

SERP Layout  for ‘Shopping Results’

The SERP results also display above the organic results. These are paid results called product listing ads. Typically, They’re displayed in carousel format and include images price information and review stars.

Ad Listing in SERP
Site Links in SERP Listings

04

SERP Layout  for ‘Image Packs’

Image packs can appear at any organic position, and they show a horizontal row of images that click through to a Google Images search.

If Google determines that visual content would be a valuable answer to the query an image pack might be displayed.

Image Packs in SERP Listings

05

SERP Layout  for ‘In-depth Articles’

If a search query is broad or ambiguous Google sometimes displays an in-depth articles widget. Three articles appear in the block and while they look almost exactly like the standard organic results. The block only counts for one organic position. These article blocks are almost always articles from huge publishers with massive authority.

In-depth Articles - SERP Listings

06

SERP Layout  for ‘Knowledge Card’

Knowledge cards typically appear at the top of the SERP. Like featured snippets instead of pulling the answer from an authoritative page, they tend to be information that’s in the public domain. Either from human-edited data or from a data stream from a Google partner. Unlike featured snippets, it’s not an element that you’ll be able to target with your SEO efforts.

Knowledge Card in SERP Listing

07

SERP Layout  for ‘Knowledge Panel’

Knowledge panels appear to the right side of the standard organic results. The information that populates a knowledge panel is pulled from various sources including Google Data partnerships human edited sites like Wikipedia and data from Google’s site index.

While you can’t target a generic knowledge panel with your SEO efforts you will be able to influence what shows up in the knowledge panel. For a brand search for your own company or your client’s company.

Knowledge Panel in SERP Listing

08

SERP Layout  for ‘Local Pack’

If the phrase you’re searching for has local intent Google will display a local pack in the SERP. The local pack appears at the top of organic results and is specially spaced dominating on mobile. The local pack includes a map and three locations with address and phone number information displayed for each location. Depending on the type of local query the pack will also display a website link, a directions link or image and pricing information.

Local Pack in SERP Listing
Local Pack in SERP Listing

09

SERP Layout  for ‘News Box’

if you’re searching for something that’s newsworthy or relevant to current events Google might include a news box in the SERP. results are pulled from Google News the block is labelled in the news and includes several links to articles on the topic.

News Box Listing in SERPs
News Box Listing in SERPs

10

SERP Layout  for ‘Related Questions’

Google is able to analyse trillions of search queries, so if the phrase that you’re searching tends to lead to additional questions or searches Google might include related questions somewhere in the SERP. Labelled ‘People also ask’ the section shows common related questions in an accordion box. So, clicking on a question expands to show the answer that looks very similar to a featured snippet. In fact, the answers displayed are also the featured snippets that display each individual question.

Related Questions in SERP Listings

11

SERP Layout  for ‘Tweets’

For certain queries Google displays tweets directly in the syrup mixed in with the standard organic results you can’t optimize to show up here but visually your brand gets more recognition on the SERP which could boost your perceived relevancy to the user.

Tweet Listing in SERPs

12

SERP Layout  for ‘Videos’

Certain keywords might display video results it’s more likely that YouTube videos will be displayed. But other hosts can achieve these results as well.

Videos Listing SERPs

I hope you have understood What is SERP now, you should check using Google Analytics/ Webmaster whether your website’s URL/Pages are getting listed on the Google search engine. To get organic traffic to your website, you need to outsource SEO services to an agency like HariSoft.

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How much do SEO services cost?

How much do SEO services cost?

One of the questions we get asked all the time is How much do SEO services cost?. what should they cost?

So in today’s blog post, we’re going to break it down for you one of the first questions people have when they look into SEO for their website is how much is this going to cost me?

It’s a fair question since obviously, you have a business to run in a budget to manage at the end of the day. The best question to ask yourself isn’t how much you’re paying for SEO but how much you’re investing into it.

For most companies who invest in SEO, the expense is worth it in fact one study found that 75 percent of business owners who used SEO Services (also Local SEO) felt that improved their bottom line.

The first thing to consider is what are you trying to accomplish with SEO. If your website isn’t getting any traffic it might be because it’s not showing up in your target audience’s online searches. That is where SEO comes in, 90% of online experiences start with the search engine. An SEO expert’s job is to optimise your website so that search engines like Google and Bing recognize its quality and rank it higher in search results.

You can have an awesome looking website but if it doesn’t rank then no one will ever see it. If your goal is to gain more leads SEO can help you get there but you may have to spend money to get the results.

You might also want to think about what your competitors are spending, if your competitors are getting top rankings by investing in quality SEO your company may want to take some cues from their strategy. If they’re spending $2500 a month on SEO services, it’s unlikely that you’ll get the same results by going with an SEO company that’s only charging you $500 a month. You’ll have to determine how much you’ll need to spend to outrank your competitors and earn more business.

Another question to ask yourself is how competitive is your market? The larger and more competitive your market the higher the cost of SEO services can be. That’s because you need to beat out more companies that are using the same keywords and buying for the same customers. If you’re an international company with a popular service you should expect to be paying higher prices for more aggressive in-depth marketing. But if you’re in a specialized service that limits you geographically like landscaping in a small town then you might be able to rank faster because there is a smaller pool of competitors to beat.

Lastly, a lot of companies wonder about the cost of in-house marketing versus hiring an SEO agency having a member of your staff do your SEO. In-house might seem like a way to save money but an effective well-done SEO campaign takes time.

If you do your own SEO you’ll need to dedicate at least several hours a week to it. After all the initial education and background research, this costs your business time money and manpower and your staff member probably isn’t an SEO specialist. An agency already has the education and experience to immediately start working on your site.

Also, only 11 per cent of marketers who do in-house are satisfied with their performance.

So outsourcing SEO services to an experienced SEO Agency like HariSoft is a long-term investment and when it comes down to it you get what you pay for. A qualified and reputable SEO company will offer fair but competitive pricing for their services. And a word of caution, anyone who offers instant results at outlandishly low prices is suspicious. If you trust a shady company you’re gambling on the success of your business.

Why you should outsource SEO services in 2021

Why you should outsource SEO services in 2021

The SEO brigade is going to take your business not only to the next level but if targeted well, can drive exponential growth for your business. Some companies have understood the importance of the medium and have invested the better part of their business returns to drive further business. But often entrepreneurs or companies sailing under a tight budget try to do it the DIY way. Some start-ups or entrepreneurs assume that no one else knows their business like them, so how can an SEO agency help them market well. They often try and succeed but not as expected and not again in the stipulated time. In this debate of self v/s outsourcing, companies should remember what they stand to gain and what they fail to comprehend.

SEO in house vs outsourcing

To outsource SEO work to an Agency is a question of much brainstorming, but hard facts need to be considered while seeking and agency over self. A business needs to first identify its requirement and then decide to experiment or act. If you are in a dilemma of choosing an in-house employee over an SEO agency, ask yourself these questions.

  • Who are your target audience – Global, National, Local or Niche?
  • What impact are you expecting SEO to make to your business?
  • What is the annual revenue you expect from your business?
  • What are the strategies lined to generate this revenue?
  • What is the investment you are ready to make in SEO?
  • Can your in-house team justify your investment?
  • Is your company enabled enough to keep your in-house employee upgraded on technologies?

When you run through these questions and identify whether your SEO need can be fulfilled in-house or through Agency, consider the following influential factor and SEO Agency can offer-

An SEO agency is armed with professional expertise, working on updated tools, newer practices and a deeper understanding of the technology and market. They are well adapted to service the latest requirements in the market, considering the ever-updating Google algorithms.

A constant team of employees who can offer dedicated 24 X 7 support, if and when required.

An SEO agency is well banked with professionals across different domains like – Content Creators, Digital Marketers, Analyzers, Developers, Designers, Online Researchers, Web Designers, Email Marketers, Social Media Experts and associated services.

Critical analysis and suggestive mode of operation. Depending on your individual company requirement and product/service reach, a mix of services can opt like SEO, Social Media, Web Design, PPC or Email Marketing.
Agencies have scalability and financial flexibility and hence work on your choice of budget, which cannot be explored with in-house SEO. This also ensures long term savings as compared to EO cost plus additional employee salary.

A definitely targeted approach can also ensure quicker results and ROI.

Often start-ups require a better and penetrated SEO approach for want of establishing in the market. Some companies that provide products/ services globally need rigorous marketing promotions to stand tall against competitors. Niche Products/ services again require a dedicated approach and in the end, this should all fall within the company budget. While an employee might do full justification at his job, an employee is an army against a single soldier. It is a decision every company has to decide on individual requirements and growth prospects.

Author,
Rohit Bhalunkar
Founder, HariSoft

    6 Common Ecommerce SEO Mistakes you must avoid

    6 Common Ecommerce SEO Mistakes you must avoid

    Let’s learn about Common Ecommerce SEO Mistakes you should avoid.

    Ecommerce a full-fledged industry in itself is governed under a battery of parameters. Right from establishing a good website enhanced with usability, payment gateway and efficient browsing experience as the plinth, the building of an exquisite experience further calls for some undisputed SEO practices. While Ecommerce SEO is the crowd puller for your eCommerce site, you cannot afford to make mistakes. And yet, if you think your eCommerce site is lacking somewhere, you need to identify if you are at default with some of the factors listed below.

    Poor Keyword Research

    Google only loves you when everyone else loves you first – Wendy Piersall

    SEO is driven by efficient keywords.

    Best Keywords = Best Ecommerce SEO Practices

    Some company websites often chart the top ranking, while some fail to make a mark. Every business and industry is associated with certain keywords. Thorough research on keywords is a subject to explore. Google Adwords key planner, Moz & SEMrush are some of the efficient applications at sourcing the best keywords that can complement your business.

    Duplicate Content affects ranking

    Good content is not storytelling, but telling your story well – @ Marketing Prots

    A company should not be just bothered about plagiarism but pledge to develop its own content. A well written, un-copied content does most of the ranking job next to keywords. Duplicate content has been seen to be affecting Google ranking at large. An eCommerce site cannot afford to just cut -copy- paste product info as this will be replicated on many other sites the company is promoting its products. The result is a drop in Google ranking. A well-crafted, unique product description is the need for a good eCommerce site.

    Keyword Spam

    There is a fine line between informing and spamming – Anonymous

    You have followed the practice of diligently extracting keywords for your eCommerce site. Every keyword you find has certainly braved a competition and stands unique. Even so, control the temptation of spamming your eCommerce pages with keywords. A good blend of keywords needs to be worked and evenly spread through the pages.

    Please do your research on How to stop keyword spamming on your eCommerce website for more details.

    Lack of product reviews

    Don’t find customers for your products, find products for your customers – Seth Godin

    The above action in practice is definite to invite some good product reviews. Product reviews are a source to make our eCommerce page interactive. Not only does it build a trustworthy ground for customers who buy your products, but it also serves as a constant source of active content on your page.

    Product reviews are a good strategy for keeping your customers hooked to your website.

    Security Measures

    By failing to prepare you are preparing to fail – Benjamin Franklin

    Of course, when your eCommerce website is dealing with critical customer information and the payment gateway, a secure system is mandatory. Google’s initiative at Chrome to rank secure websites on priority is a pertinent step towards the security aspect. Websites marked HTTPS appear secured on google pages with a green tick which further claims the trust of the customers. The SSL certification is a quick and easy step at attaining HTTPS status.

    Usability

    People ignore designs that ignore people – Frank Chimero

    If you do not care about usability, your customer won’t care about you.

    When you have a sea of competitors to face, merely depending on your Ecommerce SEO practices might not help. It is imperative that the e-commerce site is highly flexible on the usability factor, offers quick browsing, easy loading product catalogues, efficient searches, well-classified products and categories, attractive landing pages, and crisp and relevant content. Adapting and avoiding certain factors will certainly enhance your business operations over a period of time. The trick is a continuous analysis of what’s working right for you and what mistakes are in the making. A company that is facing fierce competition should always be on the vigil as mistakes could lead to scalding the company reputation and business eventually.

    Why SEO is important for business in 2021

    Why SEO is important for business in 2021

    What is SEO?

    Search Engine optimisation is a part of website development where the web developer takes into consideration the Google Search Engines Algorithm and its best practices. The SEO process ensures the use of optimised code & images, meta tags & description, Page schema and most important researched keywords. Learn Why SEO is important for businesses for growing visibility. Don’t you want to be seen?

    An SEO compliant site ensures enhanced website quality, faster navigation, usability, mobile-friendly optimization, well-maintained content, a secure website, an active supply of content, effective link building and social media marketing amongst all.

    Good SEO enables the website pages to get listed and ranked on Google quickly. In other words SEO, good practices helps in cost effective website traffic generation, connecting with customers and boosting search engine rankings over competitors.

    Why SEO is important for small businesses?

    SEO enables in creation of a responsive user friendly website, that can be easily parsed by Google and other search engines. Helps in ranking on search results and generating traffic for your website.

    An array of parameters come to make your site SEO compliant. In addition, the ever-changing Google algorithms also have a major role to play. While many companies expect a faster result, they engage in paid SEO services and top the google ranking. But, some companies take it the organic- unpaid way. Let’s understand how they drive organic SEO and its benefits. Achieving the highest ranking on Google Search is like building a trust factor for your online clients. While there are a plethora of parameters that decide the google ranking, emerging highest under this scanner is a game not easy. But, a well optimised SEO website draws considerably more attention as compared to the Non-SEO versions.

    Organic traffic is ruled totally by keywords. The right set of keywords help establish your presence. The approach might be difficult, considering the various players, but what is important is that if you exile, you are certainly going to draw long term results.

    Organic SEO against Paid SEO

    Organic SEO against Paid SEO

    Paid SEO activities drive, boost and scale up the ranking offering faster results. Activities like PPC – Pay per click, SEM – Search Engine Marketing, Facebook advertising are campaign-driven. The process is fed by continuous investment. If you decide to take a break your whole SEO ranking can go for a toss. Then it’s a matter of starting from scratch. Organic activities at the same time are not driven by investment. As a tree grows organically, even if not watered, it sustains for a while drawing nutrition from existing resources, likewise, organic SEO sustains on the keyword planted.

    Organic SEO against Social Media

    Social media like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest might bring you considerable traffic as compared to Google. A company might decide not to bank alone on Google ranking or for that matter even on Organic SEO. But, Social Media is again driven by a set of parameters. How Google changes its algorithms from time to time, Social media is also bound to introduce a newer set of rules and operations ground. It remains a debate which of the mediums is the best, Organic SEO, Paid SEO or Social Media. What a company should understand is its primary requirement of –

    • How desperately the company needs traffic in the next 6 months – 1 year?
    • What is the spending capacity of the company?
    • Is the company ready to invest in one medium (Paid SEO) or would want to explore multiple mediums?
    • Is the company hell-bent on Organic SEO or would benefit from a combination of Organic & Paid?

    When can you think Organic SEO?

    One can indulge in Organic SEO when a company has ample time and an expert base to hunt and explore variant keywords. Additionally, if a company has a very tight budget they can explore Organic SEO. Some companies have also benefited from a mix of Organic SEO and paid services. What needs to be identified is the requirement and then work on an effective way around. Albeit, what has been observed by experts is Organic SEO goes a long way with time and patience.

    How to outrank National brands on Google

    How to outrank National brands on Google

    The traditional mode of marketing is seeing bleak days as compared to the severe involvement in the last decade. Technology is the catalyst and has tremendously transpired the marketing grounds to shift base to an online platform. While companies were apprehensive to the newer solution of online marketing, it also came as a cheaper option to traditional marketing. Over the last decade, many companies have built their trust and scaled up through the online platform. The key is aggressive approaches.

    While a set of technology patterns, procedures, analysis and campaigning rule the game, its challenging to remain in the limelight on the Google Search Engines securing a dominant rank on the market nationally. Competition rules everywhere online/offline. While staying put through the competition, it’s necessary for lesser-known brands to survive the bigger brands having National presence. Google Search Engines update the algorithms on a routine basis, hence it’s important to work towards maintaining the slimy, sensitive ranking. A couple of approaches have been shared here that can help enhance the SEO experience online for National Brands.

    Early Adapter on Google Technologies

    Google is creating a newer and richer experience for SEO manifestations. The emerging technologies are well aided to support the latest needs of the SEO segment. It serves well to be an early adapter to the latest Google technologies. Try, test, and master these latest trends to emerge and enhance your SEO experience.

    Supplementing live pages

    While content and technology together drive SEO, one needs to be in total control of Content. A non-imitated content can solve the purpose of emerging well on the National Google ranking. A unique, cut to serve, organic content can help drive up the ranking. However, having a review page on the website will be a source of active content hitting the page even months after the page creation. The live content generation remains an ongoing process and can enhance Google’s ranking.

    Accelerated Mobile Pages

    Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMP are open-source platforms that are created for the loading speed of mobile pages. Formed with the collaboration of Google and Twitter, AMPs are designed to generate a faster and smoother browsing experience on mobile.

    When National brands capitalise on a market that is highly prone to shift preferences, the slow loading of mobile pages could be one of the major factors when online sales are considered. We are ultimately banking on user experiences.

    AMP has its sets of advantages and deficits but has been able to simplify the speed issues on mobile mediums.

    HTTPS

    HyperText Protocol Secure is an enhanced and secure version of HTTP.

    Our websites hold sensitive data and are our online reputation. Under the technology movement, the imminent negative acts of piracy and cyber pilferage need to be curtailed for data integrity. Google as a revolutionary measure has announced that post-October 2017 all non – HTTP websites will be marked insecure on chrome. The solution is just obtaining an SSL Certificate. It surely comes as a proven fact that Google boosts ranking for secure websites.

    HTTPS means secured online data. Protect your client credentials, and other sensitive information prone to cyber-attacks. When your market spans the national level, HTTPS is a measure of remaining vigilant and not just reactive.

    Country-Specific domains – Country specific domains have an edge over their .com and .net counterparts. Domains like .uk (United Kingdom), .ie(Ireland) , .in(India) help drive the ranking. The specific domains help navigate traffic for the specified country of listing. If a visitor is targeting “Indian handicrafts”, the handicraft domains with .in name will definitely be listed on priority in the Google ranking.

    Optimisation at Local as National level

    Products / Services need to be optimised depending on their target market capture. Brands with National expanse need to have location-specific keyword identifiers to optimise the website nationally, at capturing the target audience.

    Establishing National SEO is a terse battle, having so many high performing brands in the market. The plethora of keywords won’t work but virgin content, capturing smaller, local markets and cumulatively targeting a bigger domain.

    It’s a game of permutations of choosing the right modus operandi of SEO techniques for bringing your brand in good ranking nationally.