SEO has become a staple of any good business plan but this particular technique is going through a rapid change. The very fundamental aspects of SEO are in flux and many businesses will have to adapt to these changes or face falling behind. Here are just some of the ways in which SEO is changing and how to incorporate these changes into your overall strategy.
Keywords have always been intrinsic to SEO but in the past many companies would fixate on a single keyword and focus all of their energies onto that word and its ranking. This approach can be overly simplistic and reductive, which isn’t conducive to building long lasting relationships with consumers. Many businesses also tend to utilise generic keywords which don’t go into any real detail about the products or services they provide.
The approach towards keywords and their use within SEO has changed dramatically with meaning and semantics playing a much larger role. Businesses utilising SEO are encouraged to focus more on long tail searches rather than single keywords. This allows for a much more meaningful connection with consumers and therefore a greater potential for building a relationship.
Just like keywords, content plays an important role within SEO and as a technique has been used by companies for many years. The problem is that many businesses fall into the trap of creating content which would rank highly on SERPs without any regard to quality. Countless blog posts and articles are produced just to showcase a group of specific keywords rather than appealing to an audience.
Many companies have realised that content creation can be an incredibly powerful marketing tool. Rather than producing large quantities of low quality pieces, many businesses are now focusing on creating content for the reader. This means engaging and interesting copy which is produced for the sake of informing or entertaining consumers rather than manipulating search rankings.
In the past SEO has primarily been about the pursuit of achieving a higher ranking in Google’s search results. Whilst this can be incredibly useful, many businesses have come to the realisation that a more comprehensive approach is needed and this includes the use of social media. The way in which companies utilise social media has changed drastically in recent years with many businesses now using networking sites as their main method of communicating with customers.
More and more consumers are turning to sites such as Facebook and Twitter when deciding on a potential purchase. This means that companies are going to have to use more of a multi-faceted approach towards marketing in order to attract custom. SEO is a very useful tool but a company that aims to be futureproof will have to use a combination of techniques in order to achieve success.
One of the ways in which Google judges the placement of websites within its search results is by how much that website is being discussed. It does this by analysing how many other sites link back to it. This makes sense in theory but in practice many companies would employ unscrupulous tactics in order to manipulate the system. For example discussing their business on forums or even spam sites, just to boost their backlinks.
The way in which backlinking has changed and will continue to do so is very much tied up with the idea behind content. If a company produces regular high quality content, backlinking will happen naturally. With an emphasis on quality over quantity, businesses will need to adopt a more cautious approach when selecting a backlink source.
It may seem like SEO is being fundamentally changed but really it’s just being policed better. Google’s updates over the last few years are putting a stop to some of the more insidious black hat techniques in order to encourage ‘good’ SEO practices. Companies may have to put in more time and effort into their SEO but the potential benefits are much greater than those garnered from the many quick fixes of the past.