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Top 30 SEO Interview Questions & Answers

Top 30 SEO Interview Questions & Answers
November 14, 2019

Top 30 SEO Interview Questions & Answers

Nov 14, 2019
Rashmi Rao V
V Rashmi Rao, a Digital Marketer with 7+ years of experience in creative Content writing, proofreading and a SEO professional. Rashmi is a veteran for creating and managing digital content across mediums to help build relationships for organizations and individuals.

Digital Marketing is a booming industry, as companies are focusing in building a great digital space, they need more digital workforce. SEO professionals are always on high demand in the digital workspace, which means you have numerous job opportunities as a SEO professional. Be it content marketing, increasing page ranks, attracting web traffic or creating a social media campaign, SEO is the crux of digital marketing. All this means you have a lucrative career in the SEO domain. We are sharing the Top 30 SEO Interview Questions & Answers with you that will help you to crack any SEO interview and grab your dream job.

Q1. What is SEO and Can You Describe Different Types of SEO?

SEO or search engine optimization is the process used to increase traffic or number of visitors through the search engines. All major search engines like Yahoo, Google, and Bing show search results, that are ranked based on relevant searches done by users.  SEO is a technique that helps users to obtain high rankings on search engines. 

Types of SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
On-Page SEO is a set of optimization techniques which are used on the page of the website. All the changes are on the page of the website and all are visible on the website. It includes optimizing your content, keyword density, title and meta tags, HTML code, image file names, Alt tags, etc.

Off-Page SEO techniques are implemented outside your website. They include link building, promoting content, social media marketing, which help to build the overall brand presence and references across the web.

Q2. How do Search Engines Work? 

Search engines crawl websites and index them into their databases. When a search query is entered, search engines dig into their index and identify all relelvant web pages, rank them based on the algorithms in effect and then display the results to the user.

Q3. Can you Define the Steps Involved in the SEO Process?

The steps involved in SEO process are:

  • Website audit & competitive research
  • Create a strong website architecture
  • Writing rich & unique content
  • Perform keyword research
  • Optimize each page with on-page SEO practices
  • Perform off-page SEO activities
  • Promote content
  • Monitor the performance using analytics tools

Q4. What is Keyword Research? Is it Essential for SEO?

Keyword: It is a search term/ word/phrase/ sentence/question entered into a search engine. Keyword research is one of the most important activities in the search engine optimization process. It is the process of identifying keywords that help you achieve your marketing goal. The objective is to find keywords or search terms that will allow right visitors to land on your page. Some tools that can ease your keyword research process: Open Site Explorer, Google AdWords Keyword Tool, SEMRush etc.

Q5. How Will you Determine that a Particular Keyword is the “BEST KEYWORD”? 

Some best practices that can be followed while doing keyword research and help determine the best keywords for you:

1. Understanding the Competition, Competitor & the market is necessary.
Exploring what your competitors are doing and which are the keywords they are targeting can help you to determine better options for you. While doing a keyword research you can also check for competitors site, their activities etc.

2. Collecting Ideas
You can achieve this by brainstorming on the present keywords or analyzing competitor’s keywords. You can also gather keywords from events, industry news and any other online content published and that which includes your targeting keywords.

3. Search Volume is just not enough
While doing a keyword research we usually settle on the ‘search volume’ the particular keyword has yielded. But after using it for 6 months you realize that the keyword doesn’t work and your page rank comes down. The search volume specifies how repeatedly a keyword was searched for in a given month. Using this value, you can consider/evaluate how relevant the keyword is. However, a high search volume does not always mean that the keyword is the best. Instead, you can short list few keywords depending on the search volume and later analyze their competitiveness and high performing ability.

4. Local is the new global
A keyword search that is focused towards local search will help to determine better keywords. You can do this simply by searching through geo-location search keywords.
Eg: Digital marketing services in Hyderabad

5. Searching for topics than just words or phrases
Searching for specific topics, or asking relating to certain topics will help you to gather better keywords and will help you to perform better keyword research.
Eg: words – 3BHK flats
Eg: Topics – 3BHK flats for purchase in Gachibowli, Hyderabad, India

6. Use Google trends and other popular social sites to understand the trending topics 
Eg: you can use #hashtags in Facebook and Twitter to check for viral topics on the social site.

7. Do not forget to use a list of different synonyms for the keywords

8. Lastly calculate the KEI (Keyword Effectiveness Index) by [Pages in the Index / Volume]
Finally, choose the keywords that are:

  • Highly relevant
  • Have better search volume
  • Have a Low KEI

Q6. What does it mean if Nothing Appears on Doing Search on the Domain?

On doing search on your domain and if nothing appears then there can be 3 possibilities.

  1. Either the site is banned by search engines hence is not visible
  2. Or there has been no indexing done by the search engines
  3. Sometimes there can be some canonical issues or duplication of links or pages

Q7.  Define SERP?

SERP or Search Engine Result Page is the page that displays the results for a specific search question or search term entered into the search engine. Along with the search term results it also includes advertisements.

Q8. Do you Have Some Knowledge on Organic and Paid Results?

Organic results in SEO indicate the listing of the web pages that are most related to the keyword searched by the user. It is also referred to as “free” or “natural” search results. Receiving a higher ranking in the organic results is the main purpose of doing SEO.

Paid results in SEO mean the opposite of organic results. It generally relates to the ads displayed above the organic search results. A number of website owners make use of Google Ads service to display their website name or link for specific search terms or keywords. Paid results are only visible when users enter a search query with those specific keywords.

Q9. Explain What ‘nofollow’ and ‘dofollow’ Links Are?

Nofollow links do not pass Link juice and have no impact on Google Ranking Algorithm. Whereas, Dofollow link passes link juice and has an impact on Google Ranking Algorithm.

Q10. Rather than Improving the Search Engine Results, What are The Other Benefits SEO Offers?

  • SEO offers a transparent approach to search engine marketing
  • A structured approach to keyword research - identifies the potential volume of visitors for each keyword
  • Higher & Long-term ROI
  • Long term Search Engine Positioning & Ranking
  • Free & Targeted Traffic
  • Continuous Promotion of your website
  • Measurable Results
  • Increased Brand Visibility and Recognition
  • Increased Sales
  • Cost-Efficient
  • Improves Page Rank

Q11.  What are Short-tail and Long-tail Keywords?

Short-tail Keywords Long-tail Keywords
Generic Specific
Lesser number words More number of words
High competition Less competition
High search volumes Less search volumes
Eg: Doctor Eg: Best Orthopedic Surgeon In Hyderabad

Q12. What are the Components of a Web page on Which You Can Apply the SEO Techniques?

Page Title:  Page title, also identified as title tag, is a phrase used for relating web page content. The title tag is visible on the search result pages just on top of the URL and can also be seen at the top of a browser.

URL: Uniform Resource Locator or URL works as a generic term that stands for all kinds of web addresses found on the web. URLs help users with various ways to identify and locate resources and documents on the internet. URLs include IP address of the host, internet protocols, and the domain name along with other details.

Meta Description: Meta description should be around 160 characters and offer a precise description of any web page content. This Meta description acts as a preview of the web pages over the SERP page.

Image File Name & Alt Text: Google Bots or crawlers cannot read images on the web. Thus, it makes use of the alt attributes to recognize what an image is all about. The Image Alt text is typically considered as an alternating text for an image, which offers a textual alternative to the bots to index the web page bearing the image. Providing readable file names can enhance the score of your web page.

Headings: When search engines visit your website, headings provide an outline of your content to them. Having right words in the headings (H1 to H6) can enahnce your page's ranking

Q13. What are Backlinks or Incoming links?

Backlinks are also called as incoming links or inbound links, play a significant part in SEO, are based on both text and graphics. These links are hyperlinks present on a third-party web page that help in redirecting users to your web page. These links allow users to move from one web page to another page. When Google search engine analyses several quality backlinks to a web page, it believes the page to be more appropriate to the search query, which also helps in its indexing process and in turn improves its organic ranking on SERPs. 

Q14. What is Cross-linking?

  1. It is the process of linking one site with a new site
  2. It offers the users with reference sites that include the content related to the search
  3. The 2 websites cross-linking need not necessarily owned by the same person
  4. Cross-linking helps to display the page on the search engines using SEO techniques
  5. It could be a 2-way link or 3-way link. In a 2 way, link site X links to site Y and site Y links to site X. In a 3 way link, site X links to site Y, site Y links to site Z and site Z links to site X
  6. While doing cross-linking, the site ranking is calculated on the basis of the relevancy of the site

Q15.  Tell me something about White Hat SEO and Black Hat SEO?

White Hat SEO involves use of SEO techniques that completely follow search engine rules and policies. The good SEO practices acceptable by search engines.

Black Hat SEO involves SEO methods that are illegal/ bad/ not acceptable by search engines are referred to as Black Hat SEO. Techniques such as Hidden text, Doorway pages, Link Farming, cloaking and keyword stuffing are not acceptable by search engines.

Q16.  How will you check the health of your site?

An SEO Audit is a health check-up done for your website which consists of looking at the technical architecture of your website to optimize search engine ranking and presence. It checks for both On-Page and Off-Page SEO activities. SEO Audit helps in identifying the issues that need to be addressed and create an action plan while a good SEO audit keeps your website updated with the latest trends in search engine marketing.

Q17. Have you heard about Google Sandbox?

An unreal or imaginary location where the new websites and their search rankings or results are stored until they meet the search engine ranking standards. A site is usually sandboxed when it is new and it does not rank for the keyword terms that may be less competitive in Google.

Q18. Throw Some Light on Google Analytics

Google Analytics was introduced in 2005. It is a web analytics too developed by Google that collects data from web traffic and compiles them into reports. The purpose is to ensure that users can review online campaigns by tracking page quality and conversions to enhance lead generation on their websites.

  • With the help of Google analytics we can easily track customer behavior
  • It helps in analyzing what is working and what is not for your advertising campaigns
  • Helps understand user progress
  • Helps to create high, loyal customers
  • Helps lead generation sites to collect data and generate potential leads

Q19. Name a Few SEO Tools That Help in Performing the SEO Techniques

  1. SEM Rush
  2. Ubersuggest
  3. Google Search Console
  4. Google Analytics
  5. Google Keyword Planner
  6. Similar Web
  7. Buzzsumo
  8. Bing Webmaster Tools
  9. Moz

Q20. In Your View What are Some Key Elements of a Good Ranking Site?

  1. The website design should be very simple, clean and easy to understand
  2. The overall website load time should be less
  3. The website should have unique rich content and free from plagiarism or duplication
  4. Proper usage of relevant keywords with prominent frequency is must in the website content
  5. Always use content that is search engine friendly
  6. Create a bug free website with well-defined WebPages that are framed in a structured sequence
  7. The website must follow all the necessary designing and developing algorithms

Q21. How Can You Optimize a Website that Has Millions of Pages?

To optimize a website with millions of pages you can do the following:

  • Create good internal link structure
  • Generate dynamic title and description
  • Create Dynamic XML sitemap

Q22. How do You Gather Latest Updates in SEO? Do You Follow any SEO Blogs?

  1. Search Engine Land
  2. Search Engine Journal
  3. Search Engine Watch
  4. Content Marketing Institute
  5. Moz
  6. Neil Patel
  7. HubSpot

Q23. What are Google Algorithms? What are Major Algorithm Updates?

Google algorithm is a set of various commands written for the purpose of supplying back with relevant search results to the search queries made. Every year around 500-600 times Google changes its algorithms. The Google agorithm searches various web pages that comprise of the keywords you searched for, and then it allocates a rank to each of these pages based on several factors. Google uses several other criteria that change from time to time to deliver more relevant results.

Some of the major Google algorithm updates are:

  1. Panda (2011)
  2. Penguin (2012)
  3. Humming Bird (2013)
  4. Mobilegeddon (2015)

For the entire history of Google's algorithm updates, visit Marie Haynes website.

Q24. Tell us about Page Authority & Domain Authority?

Page Authority is page ranking measure that helps determine the authority of the page between 0-100. Higher the page authority, better page ranking in SERP.
Domain Authority is a measure used to rate the web pages on 1-100 scale. One of the most prominent SEO measures. More the value of DA, more the chances of getting strong traffic for the website. 

Q25. What is Robots.txt?

Robots.txt tells the search engine crawlers about the web pages on the website which are not to be visited by them. Robots.txt is useful for averting the indexing of the different parts of website content that the owners do not want to show.

Q26. What is a Canonical URL?

Canonical URLs describe the idea of choosing the best URL for the web pages that the visitors want to see. These URLs are also called canonical tags, as they help in content syndication when there are several versions of the same page available on the web. Thus, it helps in avoiding content duplication.

Q27. Give some Off-page Activities that Would Enhance Your Website Ranking?

  1. Blogger Outreach
  2. Guest Blogging
  3. Get links to your blog
  4. Answer question on forums like Quora.
  5. Commenting or Posting reviews on others blogs
  6. Social Sharing

Q28. How Do You Know If Your SEO Efforts are Working?

To check whether your SEO efforts are working or not, the first step is to check the website statistics, which tells about the origin of traffic.  You can use rank monitoring tools like SEM Rush or MOZ, input the desired keywords to track and start tracking the rankings. 

Q29. What will be your further steps if your SEO methods or technique does not work?

My first attempt would be to try analyzing the problem and resolving them step by step.

  1. Firstly I would check whether it is a new project, if it is then will check for the key words.
  2. Check for the Keyword ranking on the search page.
  3. Make sure all the backlinks and other links are in place.
  4. Will make some changes in page text, titles and description for further improving the ranking.

Q30. What is Rank Brain?

Google Rank Brain is considered to be a part of Google's search algorighm, which provides the context to the queries that have no clear intent. Rank Brain utilizes artificial intelligence and machine learning to help interpret the complex queries. Find more about Rank Brain in this Quora thread.

Hope these questions and answers will help crack your SEO job interview and if not you can still approach us at Digital Ready a premier digital marketing institute with digital experts on board. 

To know more about SEO, send us WhatsApp message on 9885753885 send us an email at [email protected]

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