Friday, September 6, 2013

Is SEO Dead?

Internet marketers worldwide are now becoming aware that the factors that enabled them to rank very high in the old days are now pretty much obsolete. Gone are the days where you could take a 5 page website, throw some backlinks at it, and watch as it hits the first page of Google. Now things are different and to stay afloat marketers will have to employ new strategies and tactics otherwise they will sink in this highly competitive times. So what does Google look for now when deciding where to rank your website?

The first thing the Big G looks for is brand awareness. When you are launching your online campaign you need to position yourself in a way that you are building your brand. What do I mean by this? Firstly, when you setup your website set it up with a domain name that reflects your brand. Rather than targeting keywords like “lose weight fast” marketers or information providers should rather target a brand like “weight loss success” or “weight loss for you” which is more brandable. Another aspect of being more brandable is creating a Google Plus and Facebook account centralized around your brand. Google looks at social signals when determining where to rank you and if you don’t have those social signals in place then they will not rank you very high or worse they might think you are just a spammer who is out to make a quick buck.

Social signals play a huge part on the future of SEO and Google looks at social signals to determine your popularity and authority in the subject matter that your website is about. For example, a lot of people commenting and engaging on your website shows google that people acutally care about what you are talking about. Basically, it tells Google to pay attention to you because you really matter. You can also create a linkedIN profile for your company further strengthening the social signal indicator. What about backlinks, do they still matter?

Backlinks still do matter and for the most part still count as votes of popularity but with the release of the PANDA update backlinks from spammy sites will actually hurt your rankings. Alongside this update Google released its Disavow tool which allows you to clean up spammy links to your site. In their own words…“If you believe your site’s ranking is being harmed by low-quality links you do not control, you can ask Google not to take them into account when assessing your site. You should still make every effort to clean up unnatural links pointing to your site. Simply disavowing them isn’t enough.”

While these types of links can harm your sites the links that Google still loves to see are press release links. The nature of Press Releases is that they have a viral nature causing one submitted PR to result in multiple thousands of links if picked up by the right sources. I know PRweb offers a pretty good syndication for $19 bucks and because of the places they submit your press release to it gets picked up and heavily distributed. This chain effect results in high value backlinks to your site, the links that Google loves. SEO will always focus on relevancy, value of links, brand authority and popularity, and content. Doing things right takes more effort than doing things quickly but the end result is that doing things right will pay off a heck of a lot more in the end.

Is SEO Dead?

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