In the not-so-distant past, black hat SEO tactics filled the SERPs with unqualified web pages like a relentless tropical storm. While some people still use unethical tactics, the appeal has faded since it's harder to see real results.
Today, it's nearly impossible to fake your way to the top. Google's all-knowing algorithm
, powered by machine-learning software, has years of experience filtering out spam. It's good. It's really good.
Enter SEO 2.0 - a world where white hat techniques are heavily rewarded
The general principles of search engine optimization have not changed, but SEO methods and strategies have evolved as search engine algorithms have evolved.
For instance, less than ten years ago you could build an impactful backlink profile by getting articles published on popular article directories. When spammers flooded those sites, search engines began de-ranking sites with heavy link profiles on all known article directories.
The general principle of generating backlinks hasn't changed, but search engines know when a backlink is spam and sites with high-quality backlink profiles are generously rewarded.
Have you noticed your traffic decreasing? Is your rank dropping?
Search engines have been refining their algorithms for years to prevent unethical tactics from positively impacting page rank. With some exceptions, it's working. Unfortunately, that means if someone has been performing unethical tactics on your behalf, even if your content is stellar, your web pages might be suffering.
Have you noticed a decrease in organic traffic to your site? Is your page rank dropping you off the first page for specific searches? While lost traffic could be caused by a variety of factors, the only way to pinpoint the problem is to get an SEO technical audit.
An SEO technical audit will help you rank better
Your website requires a steady stream of targeted organic traffic to thrive. The number one reason you need a technical SEO audit
is to find out if undesirable tactics are suppressing the flow of traffic to your website. If your website has lost any visibility in the search engine results pages (SERPs), even by two spots, you need to know why.
A technical SEO audit will tell you:
- Why you're losing organic traffic
- it could be your backlink profile or a host of 404 errors that should be redirected.
- Technical issues with your website that might be causing visitors to bounce
- On-page SEO errors that might be affecting your ranking
- you may have forgotten to add meta descriptions to the head of your pages.
If your technical status is good, how is your content?
Part of SEO 2.0 requires content that meets the highest standards of quality. It's not enough to rewrite the same article topics covered by everyone else in your niche. For instance, if you're a marketing firm, it won't help you to write an article about the top five social media marketing strategies. There are hundreds of general articles covering that topic and none of them stand out.
For your content to be considered high-quality by the search engines, you'll need to write an article about the top five social media marketing strategies, how to implement those strategies, pitfalls to avoid, and examples of case studies to back up your claims.
SEO 2.0 is all about relevancy
To get anywhere in the SERPs you have to create original, high-quality, relevant content. The keyword being relevant. Search engines use latent semantic indexing (LSI)
to determine the context of page content, which extends to the anchor text used in backlinks.
For example, if you publish an article about how to increase organic traffic to your website, the search engines will expect all anchor text within that article to be related to organic traffic somehow. Anything the search engine considers related to generating organic traffic will be considered relevant. However, if you put a link in your article about how to make a salami sandwich, search engines will see that link as irrelevant to the article's main topic.
Too many of those irrelevant links in one article will either make search engines think your content is about making sandwiches, or it will view the links with irrelevant anchor text as spam.
Meet the challenge of higher search engine standards
Some search engine algorithm changes may not seem fair, especially if you've had some of your pages drop in rank or you've had to start over with certain aspects of SEO. However, consider these changes an opportunity to meet the higher standards and be one of the few who genuinely earn their way to the top.
Opinions expressed by the author are not necessarily those of WITI.
Are you interested in boosting your career, personal development, networking, and giving back? If so, WITI is the place for you! Become a WITI Member and receive exclusive access to attend our WITI members-only events, webinars, online coaching circles, find mentorship opportunities (become a mentor; find a mentor), and more!
Founded in 1989, WITI (Women in Technology International) is committed to empowering innovators, inspiring future generations and building inclusive cultures, worldwide. WITI is redefining the way women and men collaborate to drive innovation and business growth and is helping corporate partners create and foster gender inclusive cultures. A leading authority of women in technology and business, WITI has been advocating and recognizing women's contributions in the industry for more than 30 years.
The organization delivers leading edge programs and platforms for individuals and companies -- designed to empower professionals, boost competitiveness and cultivate partnerships, globally. WITIâ€™s ecosystem includes more than a million professionals, 60 networks and 300 partners, worldwide.
Inspire Future Generations.
Build Inclusive Cultures.
As Part of That Mission WITI Is Committed to
Building Your Network.
Building Your Brand.
Advancing Your Career.