SEO Primer

If you are looking for a quick small business SEO primer this could come in handy:

1. High Quality Tactics Rewarded

It may sound obvious that Google would seek to reward ‘high quality’ SEO tactics. However, the focus on rewarding high quality tactics and discounting or even punishing low quality tactics has increased in 2013 and this pattern looks set to continue.

There are many high quality tactics, here are a few examples: focus on content for your website, guest posting, have great web design and user experience, build relationships with influencers, thought leadership, have exceptional products and customer service. If you do approach webmasters for links make sure it is done in a personalised way, if you can build an ongoing relationship even better.

2. Low Quality Tactics Penalised

Google is continually improving its algorithm to bring what the searcher is looking for to the top. Low quality SEO tactics don’t help Google do that, the focus it to trick the algorithm into bringing your website to the top. You may need to take a few measures to tip the results in your favour but if that is the main focus of your SEO activities it is likely you are now in a whole word of pain and the bad news its only going to get worse.

Building dodgy links from NASA, artificial blog networks, using bots to blast forums with 1000s of links, tactics like this are now easily identified by Google and if you do it enough your website will be penalised until you remove the bad links. If you are using an SEO firm check what tactics they use. Bad links can get you banned from Google and ruin your business. There are many examples!

3. Anchor Text Diversity Important

Anchor text is one of the easiest ways for Google to see you have been trying to manipulate the algorithm. You used to be able to have 1000s of links with the same keyword in the anchor text pointing at your website which contained your primary keyword and rank well. Now the anchor text in your link profile needs to look natural. Use your keywords, keywords within a sentence, your company name, URL, and many other phrases in links that point back to your website. You can’t control all the links but keep diversity in mind and don’t go over 50% with exact match anchor text.

4. Link Diversity Important

When an effective SEO tactic is uncovered the news travels like wildfire around the internet and everyone and his dog starts doing it. This is usually followed by a backlash where the tactic is deemed worthless but does still work when done well. Guest posting and infographics are 2 tactics which spring to mind. The best thing to do is to build a diverse link profile and use a mix of content which will weather any changes in the conditions of the Google algorithm. Pay attention to trends and if there is a new tactic, make sure it fits into your strategy before implementing it. If possible have links on blogs, news sites, blogrolls, guest posts, video sites, as many high quality websites as possible.

5. Content and Social Media Use Becoming Essential

It is becoming increasingly difficult to gain a good Google ranking without a blog. There are tactics you can use but if your competitors are using a blog they have the advantage. They can target more keywords, have more potential to gain links and can use a wider range of SEO tactics. Using social media connects you to customers, influencers and gives you opportunities to share your content for links and social shares.

About Joe

Joe White. Owner, Think Genial