Digital MarketingSearch Engine Optimization

Some SEO Facts You May Not Have Discovered

Search engine optimization (SEO) is not an exact science and any expert who tells you differently is either inexperienced or duplicitous. Experienced SEO professionals understand the ongoing digital “arms race” between SEO marketers and the search engines themselves with each side trying to outmaneuver the other.

Domain Age Matters

Type in almost any search and the top results will always – not almost always, but always – include a site that has been around for more than five (5) years and is a dominant force in its niche. These companies have built a solid reputation and provide extremely relevant information for the searcher. There is simply no way to immediately replicate this effect with a new site no matter how much time, money and effort is poured into an SEO campaign.

Google maintains that quality of the content and the types of links to it that will ultimately determine your ranking. This fact is undoubtedly true – after all, who would know better than Google – but the dirty little secret is that no one can manufacture that situation in a short amount of time. Your site needs to be visited by other reliable sources in your niche and then organically linked to them over the course of years. The bottom line is that domain age is not the be-all and end-all of page ranking but it sure helps to be a mature site.

Effective Blogging

Maintaining a blog with pertinent, up-to-date information is not for the faint of heart – in fact, it is a lot of hard work. Sure the first few articles seem like a breeze when you are relying on your extensive knowledge gained over a career. Later on, non-repeating titles and subject matter will be harder to envision. Also, your experienced readers are more likely looking for content that tells them something new and doesn’t just rehash what they have already read or know. You must build up the trust and confidence of your visitors that they will find this content on your site and that does not happen overnight.

In short, blogs cannot be static entities that are updated once a week with a run of the mill article. Instead, they must provide timely and relevant information about your niche and dynamically engage the reader. It is the only reliable way to grow your audience and have them return on a continual basis. Anyone who tells you differently is just running a content mill.

Keyword Optimization is a Double-Edged Sword

Long considered the “Holy Grail” of SEO, keyword optimization is an integral part of any online marketing campaign. Whether you include them in your blogs, your site content or in advertisements, these phrases – “longtail” or not – can significantly impact the amount of traffic that your site sees. The key, however, is not to load these words into a few, cluttered pages but to distribute them across a large number of regular postings that also get updated in a timely fashion.

This situation is especially relevant since the introduction to the latest Google update, Panda 4.0, earlier in the year. Now, keyword “stuffing” is actually being actively penalized – that is, too many keywords in an article will cause it lose rank. As a case in point, the effect on eBay – a site thin on content but heavy with specific keywords – was astonishingly bad.

In the opaque and constantly changing world of SEO, the search engine companies have the upper hand since they set the rules of the game. SEO marketers, on the other hand, are forced to play by these rules. Understanding this difference should inform your online marketing decisions and also allow you to get the most out of the relationship with your online marketer.

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