Are current SEO methods for everyone, or just the realm of SEO consultants?
SEO used to be different, getting to the top of Google was easier, and much less time consuming or expensive, but things have changed. If you built a decent website as the internet boomed a decade ago, threw in a few chosen keywords, basic content and basic meta information you were probably well away, SEO consultants had a much easier job.
SEO – What has changed?
For a full run down on the internet, the development of search engines and the beginnings of SEO we love this slideshare from Hubspot which gives a thorough timeline view of the key events:
Code to Embed:
<iframe src=”http://www.slideshare.net/slideshow/embed_code/24741084?rel=0″ width=”427″ height=”356″ frameborder=”0″ marginwidth=”0″ marginheight=”0″ scrolling=”no” style=”border:1px solid #CCC;border-width:1px 1px 0;margin-bottom:5px” allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen> </iframe> <div style=”margin-bottom:5px”> <strong> <a href=”https://www.slideshare.net/HubSpot/hub-spot-historyofseocoffeetips” title=”The History of SEO” target=”_blank”>The History of SEO</a> </strong> from <strong><a href=”http://www.slideshare.net/HubSpot” target=”_blank”>HubSpot All-in-one Marketing Software</a></strong> </div>
In 1998 Google launched with PageRank (to become known as Link Juice) ranking websites based in incoming links. In 1999 Meta Tags are most important and in 2000 a PageRank Toolbar tells SEO consultants where to find valuable links, by 2003 sites are being penalised for keyword stuffing and the “nofollow” tag is launched in 2005. This was then used by SEO experts to channel “link juice” but Google soon stopped this tactic. In 2006 “cloaking” or invisible text is banned and BMW’s website is blocked for this, XML sitemaps are born. Real time search improvements in 2009 mean that fresh social media content can be indexed rapidly and reaches the top of the search engines and in 2010 it’s confirmed that Twitter and Facebook influence SEO. Black Hat linking strategies are penalised by the Google Panda update in 2011 and the focus on quality begins in earnest. In 2012 the Penguin update penalised low quality link practices and article spinning, blog networks and directories are all frowned upon by all powerful Google.
Today if you post too many link heavy articles, posts or press releases you run the risk of lowering your search engine ranking or being removed all together.
How should my website be optimised for 2013 and who should do it?
Although Google is keeping SEO consultants and website owners on their toes the focus for SEO should be on:
- Good domain authority
- Quality Meta Data
- Accurate and natural use of keywords
- Naturally written, well structured, quality content
- Relevant linking from reputable websites
- Social media
- Including rich content in websites, blogs and social media for credible shareability
SEO is still very much the realm of SEO consultants and experts, who have a wealth of experience and are ready to respond to Google’s every whim, but every webmaster and contributor to a website should have SEO in mind with their every action, tweak or addition, paying particular attention to natural keyword use.
Google (and your customer) wants to see original, real content created by real people, content that is rich, well written and actually enjoyable.
A Boredom Free Guide to Improving the SEO of Your Site
The worst thing that you can do is Google “SEO”. You will be bombarded with jargon-filled, long winded and often irrelevant information. This guide is different and offers SEO consultancy level info which is easy to understand and implement.
Search engine optimisation is the hot topic that everyone knows is essential for their business, will make the difference between whether someone chooses their own website or someone else’s yet few people actually understand. For an in-depth SEO makeover and on-going monitoring it would be wise to get in touch with a trusted SEO consultancy that would be able to use expert skills to build a foundation and work to fully optimise, and keep your website optimised. For the sake of understanding better what SEO is all about this guide offers a few basic pointers for where to start with DIY search engine optimisation.
1.Golden Good Links
Google have made it very clear that they value natural and quality links over a larger quantity of poorer quality links. As part of your content management it would be wise to work in some guest posts from people with a good authority in your sector (although not a direct competitor obviously!) who will link back to your site from theirs. This type of linking goes a long way to pushing a website up the Google listings.
2.Make Navigation Easy
Customers and visitors to your website should not need a map and compass to find their way around and the general rule of thumb is that the fewer clicks that are needed to get where they need to go is best. A poorly arranged website with inadequate navigation links will turn visitors away and does nothing for the search engine crawlers who visit and index your site either.
3.Quality Copy is King
Having great quality content on your website is essential. Not only should content be well-written, relevant and interesting to the reader, it should be written in a style that makes it easier to read and search for on Google. For example, when you write a piece ensure there is a twenty-five word summary under the well-written and clear title as this section is the first people see, both on Google and when skimming the beginning of a blog or article to decide whether or not it is worth reading.
Many businesses hire a copywriter to write their content as not only does it make for great reading, it ensures that keyword density is correct and copy adheres to current Google accepted standards.
4.Include Key Details in Copy
Another content related tip; make sure that blog posts, updates and articles all include relevant information or core info about your business for example the cost of services, how to book /order and special offers. Never miss an opportunity to advertise this information.
SEO is not simply about getting your site known globally, after all, how many people in Japan are going to want to visit your café in Croydon? Ensure your website and business is listed on local search engines and directories such as Google Plus Local, the Yahoo directory and more. Facebook have their own local search engine, Search Graph in Beta testing at the moment which will enable your website to get better recognition locally. Link your website and your social media accounts and make sure your information is out there and current.
This is something of a whistle-stop tour of top SEO tips that will increase your visibility, your SEO consultancy is of course best placed to make suggestions based on your business and your individual goals and needs.