Google Panda Updates And The Future Of SEO
If you’ve been blogging for any length of time then you’ll know just how difficult it can be to generate fast traffic and backlinks without putting much effort in. When it comes to promoting your blog posts and ranking in the search engines, you really have two options. You can either pay a load of money for backlinks, or you can spend A LOT of time building them yourself.
Either way you traditionally have to do a load of work to get some backlinks… And backlinks are what makes the world go round, well at least they used to. Now it’s got a little more complex as Google has started using social signals a lot more in its algorithm. So you have to gain links from social sites and become more of an authority by leveraging the power of sites like Facebook and Twitter.
The game of website promotion and link building has changed ever since the first panda update rolled out. I know, I know, a lot of people will argue with me there, but there are undeniable facts that support what I just said. Traditional link building isn’t dead, but it’s heading that way. FACT: I stopped practices like article marketing, building forum profiles, web2.0’s and more.
I replaced traditional link building with social syndication and bookmarking, ever since my traffic has more than quadrupled and it continues to grow WITHOUT traditional backlinking. Seriously, 2010 link building practices no longer work. I could literally buy an exact match domain, slap up some content and hit it with Senuke X, Xrumer and Scrapebox (link building softwares). Then a few days later I’d be sitting at the top of Google and dominating the competition.
Those days were fun and sure were profitable, but unfortunately things aren’t quite the same anymore. First; you have to combine white hat link building with black hat, solely black hat isn’t as effective, not in the long run anyway. Spending your time trying to learn tricks to fool Google into ranking your website isn’t smart whatsoever. Sure, you can still use software to automatically spin duplicate content and submit it to a bunch of websites to build links.
That will get you short term rankings, but if you want to stay in the game and ahead of your competitors in 2012 and beyond, you need to follow a new set of rules. So please, STOP trying to fool Google with lots of low quality backlinks only to reap the benefits now. If you’d like to build a business on sand, go do that as you will lose in the long run.
Honestly, Google knows about all your little tricks, all these panda updates are getting shot of them and low quality websites. If you are not an authority website or at least looked at as an authority, you will fail miserably. Let me ask you this; why do you think Google launched Google Plus, its own social network?
It’s because Google knows that they are missing out on the social thing and want to dominate the social network world. They also know that if they want to remain the number 1 search engine in the world, they’re going to have to move away from their old school algorithm they use to rank websites. Google will do whatever it takes to remain the #1 website online. Let’s take a look at traditional SEO and the “old” algorithm:
- On-page SEO is barely important.
- You need your keyword in title, description and throughout the body.
- You need some unique content.
- Link building is everything.
- You need a load of article directory, forum profile, web2.0 and bookmark links.
That’s about it for traditional SEO. Traditional SEO was a little over a year ago now. Ever since things have been dramatically changing at a slow pace. Now let’s take a look at new SEO:
- On-page SEO is vital.
- Regular unique content is mandatory.
- Internal site architecture matters!
- Site design – your site must be user friendly.
- Backlinks are important – not as important.
- You must have high quality backlinks coming from reputable sources; backlinks should be sending you traffic. Not just created for the sake of getting a link.
- You must have a social presence.
- Google now uses social signals from Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, bookmarking sites and more to influence rankings.
You need to have a social presence; your site needs to be looked at as an authority and it must be super high quality on-page. Google realizes that if they want to be #1, they need to become a social site. That’s why Google incorporates social sites in the search results like crazy now. YouTube videos, Tweets, Facebook notes and also personalized results. That’s why Google introduced Google plus, they are now even indexing Facebook comments and showing them in search results.
How does all this affect you?
Well Google is making a shift and it’s going to affect you whether you like it or not. If you’d like to continue to grow or start growing your website’s traffic, you need to stop wasting time building crappy backlinks and start working on building your social presence. Backlinks are still mandatory, but it’s where you get them from that is now of major importance (a lot more so than before). If your backlinks aren’t sending you traffic or aren’t completely relevant they’re not going to help long term. You need to start thinking about the future of your business.
Besides backlinks and social signals, it’s about your brand. If you want Google’s trust, you have to prove that you’re not some crappy website just out to make money. You need to prove that you’re here to stay and bring value to the market place. If you don’t prove yourself to Google, why would Google give you top search engine rankings?
If you don’t start focusing on your brand, your social presence and high quality links + great content you’re going to fail in the next 12-24 months. Plus your expenses are going to go through the roof. In conclusion, if you want to explode your rankings, build a sustainable business and see rapid traffic growth, you need to focus on building your brand, your social presence, a following and the quality of your website/s.
P.S. Like my little rant about SEO? Leave me your thoughts and comments in the box below. Also put your name and email in the form below to get more cool SEO tips, tricks and secrets. Watch out for more posts like this, next I talk about building a social presence.