With all the spam e-mails we receive on a daily basis trying to sell Search Engine Optimization, I thought it would be helpful to share some insights on SEO and getting all the Google love you can.
Many people think that by taking on SEO they will be on the first page of Google in a week. Confetti will fall from the heavens, champagne will rain upon them, and their company will have record sales. But let’s be honest, SEO is not that simple when you get into it. With the release of Google’s newest “Panda 4.0” algorithm back on the 20th of May, it appears that SEO isn’t about to get any less complex anytime soon. So here are some things to keep in mind when considering Search Engine Optimization improvements.
Nobody, especially Google, cares about your meta tagging anymore. You could even say that meta-tagging is the MC Hammer of the SEO world. So now that meta is out, what is taking its place? Dare I say content quality?
The breed of website that is being brought down the furthest with this update is that of the content aggregator variety such as; PR sites, News sites, Price Comparison sites, Forums, and weather portals. The PR site Newswire is a perfect example of just how hard some companies are being hit by the changes in Panda 4.0. Due to their low quality of content and originality, their internet visibility has decreased 63%. Talk about a fall from grace! Make sure your content gets the originality stamp of approval before you post it. Let’s take a look at what the criteria that is dictating these shifts entails through a set of questions you need to ask yourself about your site:
- Would you be able to credibly site this webpage as a source? Is the content factually stringent and accurate? If not, your site may be penalized by the Panda 4.0 algorithm improvements. To avoid being docked for lack of credibility, site your work using reputable back-links!
- Are the topics being presented out of a general interest, or is the content being comprised specifically to fill a spot in the search engine rank. Yes, Google does have a way of evaluating and calculating this. Turns out, they are pretty smart. Providing interesting information that keeps the audience engaged keeps your website’s bounce rate low, and in turn, your search ranking high.
- Is this article a comprehensive yet specific depiction of the information it is presenting? Does it begin to tell you all of the biographical information you could ever want to know about the historic Archduke of Austria, Franz Ferdinand, and then jump to information about the Indie Rock band Franz Ferdinand’s most recent single? DON’T DO THIS! Pick your topic and stick to it. End of story.
- Does your page supply as much or more valuable content as competing sites? Only 10 sites can be on the front page of organic search, so it is a direct competition! Is your SEO making the podium, or is it getting knocked out in the prelims? 33% of Google search queries click on the first organic link presented with another 18% clicking the second. On the contrary, less than two percent of Google search queries go all the way to page two before refining their searched keywords. Essentially what I’m saying is that if you’re not on page one, you might as well not even have a website.
So what have we learned today? Pick a topic, write credibly about said topic, cover everything about your topic and ONLY your topic, and strive to be better than the competition. If you can accomplish all of that, your SEO is on its way to the top! We all know that pandas are cute, but in contrast they are also ferocious beasts and this update takes more to the side of ferocity. Use it to your advantage and make your SEO gains, or disregard this post and we will see you on page two. Well at least 2% of us will.