What Is Search Engine Optimisation in The Singapore Context

search engine optimisation

Search engine optimisation in Singapore helps new and existing websites increase their visibility online. If you are new to marketing, the concept of SEO can be quite confusing. Most people know the ultimate goal is to increase ranking on search results, but only a few are familiar with how it works. This, coupled up with the frequent changing of Google’s ranking algorithm, makes it even harder to understand SEO fully.

If you are looking to implement search engine optimisation in Singapore, here are some of the questions you should ask.

What is search engine optimisation?

Search engine optimisation refers to the strategies implemented to improve a website’s ranking on search engine result pages, with the ultimate goal of increasing organic traffic to that website. 

Why is search engine optimisation important?

Organic search is the primary source of web traffic for most sites in Singapore and across the world.  If you rank high on search engines, it increases the number of people visiting your website, which you can later turn into customers. In the long run, SEO improves your sales.

Google ranks site according to the relevance, accuracy and overall usefulness of the content they provide. When you implement SEO, your brand will gain authority in its niche. This, in turn, builds and credibility between the business and clients.

Sites with an excellent SEO strategy often offer an optimal user experience. If your website provides a pleasing user experience, you will get more traffic and potentially more sales.

Another aspect of search engine optimisation in Singapore that is gaining popularity is local search. Local SEO works to optimise your site for a specific location, say Singapore, so that people can find your business quickly and easily.   This also increases the level of engagement, as well as the number of conversions.

How do you do SEO for a website?

There are two main ways of implementing SEO for a website – on-page optimisation and off-page optimisation. On-page optimisation determines what you rank for, whereas off-page optimisation influences how high you rank on SERPs.

On-page optimisation refers to the aspects of your website that affect your ranking on SERPs. You have total control over these aspects, which include keywords, content, page speeds, internal links, and URL structure, and many more.

search engine optimisation


Off-page SEO focuses on increasing domain authority and search engine ranking by getting quality backlinks from external sites. The more links your website has, the higher its rank. 

Is SEO better than Paid Search (PPC)?

Every marketer has their preference in this regard. In reality, both are useful in their way. SEO is particularly effective in establishing domain authority, organic brand trust, and improving your online presence. On the other hand, PPC is an efficient means of targeting specific audiences by demographics, behaviours and keywords.

Which are the best SEO tools?

This, again, is subject to personal preferences. The most popular tools in the market include Ahrefs, which is ideal for researching backlinks and the content used by your competitors; Moz Pro, which is perfect for finding unlinked mentions; and SEMRush, which is best suited for tracking rank and website visibility.

Where can I study SEO?

The internet has an abundance of resources, both free and paid, that is useful if you want to learn SEO. Some of the most popular free platforms include Moz, Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Land, and Marketing Land. Alternatively, you can find paid courses on online education portals such as Lynda and Udemy.

Can I Implement SEO myself?

Yes, it is possible. The key to implementing a successful SEO strategy is investing time in mastering the fundamental principles of SEO. Ensure that you are familiar with the latest developments in the field to avoid using outdated techniques, as they will not yield any results.

Can I do SEO without experience in programming?

You do not have to be a proficient programmer to implement SEO for your website in Singapore. That said, some advanced SEO tactics require a basic grasp of coding, but these are very rare.

Should I hire an SEO Agency?

If you feel unsure about your mastery of the concept of SEO, you can always seek professional assistance. Many SEO agencies in Singapore can help you in optimising your site to rank higher on Google. However, you should steer off companies that guarantee the top spot in SERPs. SEO has no guarantees, and anybody who claims to have ways around it is a fraud.

Where do I start my SEO strategy?

Before anything, it is advisable to conduct an audit to establish if your site is SEO-friendly. This will enable you to identify and rectify any broken links, confirm that all your tags are functional and check age load speeds. Knowing the status of your website is crucial for formulating your SEO strategy.

What is keyword research?

Keyword research is the process of finding and analysing the actual search phrases that people enter into search engines. The findings from this study can help inform your content strategy, as well as your entire SEO campaign. 

Why is keyword research necessary?

The most significant use of keyword research is knowing the phrases and topics that are popular among your target audience.  If you are familiar with these popular topics, your content will centre on them, which increases the chances of people visiting your site.

search engine optimisation

How do I conduct keyword research?

The majority of SEO tools in the market have an inbuilt keyword explorer that can serve as a platform for keyword research. Alternatively, you can use the Google Keyword Planner.

After settling on a particular tool, use it to generate large lists of potential keywords. Follow this by identifying the most potent search terms and prioritise them when creating content for your business. You can also begin by focusing on keywords with low competition that you can easily rank for.

What is the Ideal Frequency of Keywords?

When it comes to keyword placement, there is no exact number that you can use in a page. You should not aim for a specific keyword density. That said, it is vital to keep the reader in mind. Use keywords only when you need to, and in a natural way that does not interfere with the flow of the content. Using a keyword too many times, also known as keyword stuffing, can result in penalisation by the search engines.

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Should my domain name include keywords?

If your website URL happens to have a relevant keyword, it is okay. However, you should not modify your address for the sake of forcing in a keyword, as this can harm your SEO efforts. 

What is domain authority?

The domain authority of a website correlates to its ability to rank in search results. A website with domain authority will appear on the first page of SERPs when a user searches for a keyword that is relevant to it.

What are SEO backlinks?

Backlinks are links found on other sites that when clicked, redirect users to your website. The quality and number of backlinks to your site has a significant impact on your ranking in search results — search engines value websites with several high-quality backlinks, meaning that such websites rank higher on SERPs.

How do I identify quality backlinks?

The quality of a backlink mostly depends on the reputation of the website linking to you. If the link comes from an authority site, it is high-quality. Additionally, the external site should also have content that is related to yours.

What is the difference between internal links and inbound links?

Internal links are links on a page that redirect users to other pages within your website. Inbound links are links on other sites that link to your content, also known as backlinks. When placing internal links, avoid using too many, as this counts as stuffing.

What is link building?

Link building is a strategy through which a website acquires links to boost ranking and web traffic. When you adopt this tactic, ensure that you build quality links from sites with domain authority. Low-quality backlinks are likely to result in a penalty for your website.

Can you rank without backlinks?

Backlinks are essential to achieving a high ranking on search engine results. Nevertheless, it is possible to rank high without these links. You have to ensure that your content is excellent and that your site offers an optimal user experience.

Is it safe to buy backlinks?

Buying links to manipulate your way into the first page of SERPs is against Google’s best practices. If Google notices such an activity, your site will get penalised.

Which backlinks are right for Local SEO?

If your SEO efforts are targeting an audience based in Singapore, the majority of your backlinks should come from Singaporean websites. Although there is no issue with having links from sites based in overseas countries, it makes sense to get backlinks from local websites.

What is anchor text?

Anchor text refers to the clickable text in a hyperlink. Exact match anchor text informs the search engine about the content of the page they are linking to. While they are more valuable than plain anchor text, exact match links can appear as spam when used excessively in one page. Make sure that you balance between the two.

Can broken links affect SEO?

Broken links are links that are not working. A few of them will not affect your SEO. However, too many are an indicator of negligence, and they can lower your search engine ranking.

Does amazing content guarantee a high ranking on Google?

Despite its significance, having excellent content does not always guarantee that your website will appear on the first page of search results. It is an excellent starting point, but several other factors contribute to that desired high ranking.  One cannot do without the others.

What is the ideal length for SEO-friendly articles?

According to several studies, websites with long and engaging content rank higher on Google. Most of these sites post articles that have at least 2,000 words. The reason behind this is that Google favours content that offers value to searchers by answering the questions comprehensively and providing practical solutions to their challenges.

How often should I publish content on my website?

Most websites in Singapore publish an article at least once per week. It is worth noting that this figure is not definitive; the number and frequency of articles posted on your site depend on the niche. For instance, a news site should post detail, while a blog can post every week.

The essential thing is maintaining consistency. If your readers expect an article once every week, make sure that you adhere to that routine. Also, avoid covering a single topic too many times, as Google might penalise your website.

Can duplicate content affect my website?

As per Google’s estimates, most websites around the world, Singapore included, have duplicate content. As long as you are not generating such content with malicious intent, you should not have any concerns. Regardless, you should occasionally clean up your site to remove duplicate content, as too much of it can attract a penalty from Google.

How should I structure my content for SEO?

Your content should have a good structure and easy to read. Make use of headings and subheadings and use a friendly tone. Instead of writing in plain text, try to establish a conversation with your readers. If possible, integrate bullet points and numbered lists.

What is search engine indexing?

Crawling is the process in which a search engine looks through the content on your site. Indexing, on the other hand, is the collection of the information on your website that will appear on the search results.  During crawling, the search engine selects the content that needs indexing and ignores the rest.

What is sitemap.xml?

This file is an index of the pages that make up your website.

What is robots.txt?

This is the page that shows the pages that you want the search engine spiders to crawl and index. To find this page, type in your website URL followed by /robots.txt, without spacing.

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How can I see the indexed pages?

You can view the pages on your website that are indexed by a search engine by typing the entire address in the search box.  

Does the number of indexed pages matter?

The more pages you have indexed, the more results you get on Google. Keep in mind that quality is better than quantity – it is more useful to have ten great articles than hundreds of mediocre content.

Does page loading speed affect SEO?

If your website takes ages to load a page, users are likely to return to the results page without reading its contents. This, in turn, lowers your ranking because Google only ranks sites that provide a seamless experience to users. The ideal load time is three seconds – however, if you are slightly slower but better than your competitors, goggle might rank you higher.

Will HTTPS affect SEO?

HTTPS is a protocol that protects the data transmitted between the user and a website from hackers and other potential security breaches. Google favours sites that have SSL protection by indexing them first and ranking them higher than sites that use the unsecured HTTP protocol. 

Furthermore, HTTPS is faster than HTTP, meaning that it improves the click-through-rate, which is also a ranking factor.

How does site responsiveness impact on my SEO?

The majority of internet users in Singapore use mobiles to access the World Wide Web. Last year, Google announced the introduction of a mobile-focused indexing update.  As a result, web designers have to incorporate SEO techniques on mobile versions of websites, as well as making desktop versions responsive to smaller devices.

Can ads affect SEO?

Ads are an excellent means of generating extra revenue for your site. However, too many adverts can be a nuisance to visitors, which translates into a lower ranking on search results.  Google has a special algorithm that detects pages with too many ads and pushes them down the SERPs.

What can lower my SEO ranking?

One of the most significant concerns for every marketer in Singapore is a drop in search engine ranking. The primary reason for such a situation is the failure to comply with the latest updates to the Google ranking algorithms. The second leading cause is outranking by your competitors after they improve their SEO strategies.

Other less prevalent causes include penalisation by Google for violating their guidelines and losing quality backlinks, which lowers your domain authority.

Is SEO free?

It may sound cliché, but the truth is nothing comes for free. If you want to achieve a higher ranking on Google, you have to invest a substantial amount of time and resources. The good thing is that it is your smartness that determines the level of success you enjoy, not the amount of money you spend.

What goals should I set for my SEO?

SEO is a significant investment that should generate a meaningful ROI for your business in Singapore. Many marketers get it wrong by basing the success of their SEO efforts on the number of visits they get to their website. Instead of focusing on the numbers, you should check whether the traffic is genuine leads than you can convert into customers. 

The people who are finding your website as a result of SEO should have a genuine interest in your products and services. If not, it does not matter even if you generate thousands of new traffic every day.

Your SEO goals should focus on generating quality traffic rather than generic traffic. This way, SEO will have a positive impact on your larger marketing campaign and improve your business significantly.

How long does it take to notice the impact of SEO?

Many factors determine the times it takes for the impact of your SEO efforts to become noticeable. These include the amount of content you create, the quality of the content, and the relevance of the material to your audience and the domain authority of your website. 

A large site can start noticing the effects within days after implementation of SEO, as search engines crawl them more often. If you run a small website in Singapore, it can take weeks or even months before you notice any meaningful impact. The level competition in your niche also influences the time it takes to see these changes.

How is SEO changing?

SEO is continually changing, with new elements coming into the mix as days go by. One of the trends that are gaining popularity is the use of voice searches, where users utter phrases instead of typing them. You can learn more about voice search optimisation here

Another change in the SEO industry that is perhaps the most significant is the shift towards mobile. New smartphones are a match to desktops and offer the added convenience of portability, which explains why more people favour mobile devices when accessing the internet.

Also, Google is continually making changes to its ranking algorithm to ensure that users get quality search results. A technique that is working now might be ineffective in the near future. For this reason, it is vital to keep up with the latest changes and avoid being left behind.

Does SEO have a future?

SEO will remain forever, as long as search engines exist. The methods might change frequently, but there will always be a means of ranking websites on search engine result pages.


The popularity of search engine optimisation in Singapore is at a record high, as businesses look for ways to boost their online marketing strategies. It is simple and relatively affordable implement SEO if you have the right team on your site.

Although SEO takes time to become noticeable and does not guarantee conversions, it is fundamental in driving organic traffic to your website. Over time, this organic traffic will increase brand recognisability and can potentially convert into regular customers.

If you are yet to implement SEO, you are falling behind your competition. The best time to start is now. Call us today on +65 6789 9852 for the best custom SEO services in Singapore.

About the Author

Tom Koh

Tom is the CEO and Principal Consultant of MediaOne, a leading digital marketing agency. He has consulted for MNCs like Canon, Maybank, Capitaland, SingTel, ST Engineering, WWF, Cambridge University, as well as Government organisations like Enterprise Singapore, Ministry of Law, National Galleries, NTUC, e2i, SingHealth. His articles are published and referenced in CNA, Straits Times, MoneyFM, Financial Times, Yahoo! Finance, Hubspot, Zendesk, CIO Advisor.


Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

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