Over the last few years through all of the search engine updates known collectively as the “Google Zoo” (Pandas, Penguins and so on) most webmasters knew it was just a matter of time before Google would start enforcing the things they were preaching about content. That day is here. With the recent revision of the Google Webmaster Guidelines they have made it very clear that they’re on a mission to terminate duplicate, thin, and otherwise poor content from their search results.
So how does this affect small business?
In its basic form, this means that quality should win out over quantity, at least when it comes to content and links. Google is aware with so many millions of web pages in existence, it’s too much to expect us to not promote our pages, but concurrently we have to be adding to the discussion with new and fresh content, not merely a rehashing or exact duplication of what’s already there. So, for the small business owner attempting to make headway in the search rankings, this means that we should stop trying to game the search results, and embrace natural and meaningful link building and social interaction.
Best practices and what to avoid
- Create awesome content – Craft content that people are eager to both read and share. Lend your unique voice to the conversation and don’t hesitate to ruffle feathers!
- Make it shareable – Since Google is now making social signals an element of the search algorithm it’s very important to make sure that people have the capability and want to share your content. It can make a difference in your rankings.
- Don’t use content automation – Google is getting better and better at finding and exiling automated content. Since most of the time this sort of spun or rehashed text is easily recognizable as such, just determine to avoid it completely.
- Make your links diverse – Don’t use the exact same keyword text in all of your links. It’s not natural and won’t help you rank for that keyword. Make use of keywords, naked URLs, some “click here’s” as well as other common terms.
- Don’t employ linking schemes – In the past you could get away with this, and there are many who will tell that it is still so, even so the cost of being identified is high. Do you actually want to build your business on that?
Want these best practices for your business?