SEO rewards websites that are at the top of search rankings with the lion’s share of visitors searching for that particular keyword. In an effort to get to number 1, some companies resort to using shady SEO techniques such as stuffing their content full of keywords, over-optimization, etc.
It’s an unfair practice, but Google finally took notice and updated their algorithm. In an instant, all high-ranking sites that put too much emphasis on keywords lost their spot overnight. It goes without saying that SEO has certainly evolved from having the most number of keywords to that of actually providing useful content to the audience.
Here’s how you can change with the times and optimize your site and your links in order to survive the changing nature of SEO:
No To Keyword Stuffing
Before, being consistent in stuffing your articles with the keyword you want to rank for on each paragraph used to give you ranking results, but today that’s a big no-no.
Let’s face it. Content that’s been made this way doesn’t make for good reading. The keywords are awkward in themselves no matter where you place it, and Google’s technology is becoming smart.
Enter RankBrain, a kind of extremely intelligent algorithm created to detect unnaturally-placed anchor text. It takes a quick look at how the keywords are being used. For example, let’s say a piece has a single keyword scattered multiple times in an article, and that keyword is linked to a number of different sites. RankBrain determines that it’s unnatural, and therefore penalizes the site.
Bottom line is, keyword stuffing has gone the way of the dinosaurs as far as SEO is concerned. Google has recognized the power of keywords, and took it away in favor of actual content. You may say that you’re not really stuffing, and that you make sure that the keyword doesn’t exceed 2%, but how far will this strategy get you?
Let’s make this clear- multiple keyword occurrences will no longer have any bearing on search engine rankings whatsoever.
This is a game-changing mechanic that requires a bit of an explanation, but hear me out here. Before, anyone could put in as many keyword as possible to rank on the Google search engine. Google saw this exploit and shut it down. In fact, this strategy no longer works in as far as a few years ago, but somehow gurus are still preaching it. SEO “experts” still claim it has the power to rank you up high when you hit a certain percentage. But when you look at the actual content, you’ll see that quality is compromised and that the whole thing reads awkward.
Duplicate content, paying for mass submission on directories and sites and posting in forums are out the window as well.
So, what else is there?
Yes To Great Content
They say content is king when it comes to SEO, and that is still as relevant as ever. It’s the foundation that you should build up your whole SEO strategy with because it’s the key to long-term success!
The best way to go about crafting your SEO strategy is to invest in good content creation. Keep in mind that the less you pay for content, the lower its quality will be. It makes total sense- why would a write invest so much time doing research and write a truly engaging piece when you’re paying just a few bucks?
Plus, anyone who sees that poorly-written content will just as likely leave and go somewhere else.
White Hat SEO is the better alternative to Black Hat SEO. Granted, it takes longer but the reward will be worth it. It’s Google-approved, so you can be sure that it will stand the test of time (and algorithm updates).
A writer who knows the topic will know the relevant keywords to include in the article. The more relatable phrases in a piece of content, the more RankBrain sees as relevant. That website will be propelled up the ranks sooner or later.
Here’s what you should do- think of the reader when crafting your article. It should be relevant, engaging and provide value to those who will read it. Couple that with solid link building strategies and you’ll soon rank for the most relevant keywords and associated phrases. It’s simple, easy and you won’t have to calculate keyword percentages, analyze key phrases or do keyword stuffing.