26 Apr SEO Doesn’t Have to be Hard
You could drown in all the information out there about search engine optimization (SEO) techniques. Everybody wants to find the latest and greatest strategies to woo the titans of online searches, Google, Bing, and Yahoo. It can be confusing and overwhelming, and for every article telling you to do one thing, another article says to do the opposite. Surely there’s a better way to approach SEO. Indeed there is.
The first thing to do is to realize that SEO is as much an art as a science and is likely to remain that way. That’s because internet search companies are constantly modifying the criteria they use for ranking websites in their search engine results pages. A keyword that ranked highly last month may be on page 5, 10, or 50 today. The methods search engines use to determine a site’s ranking for a key phrase have to evolve to combat those trying to game the SEO system.
For some reason, internet marketers sometimes forget that Google has an overarching primary goal. They want to give users the best results for each search engine query. They aren’t there to make your site rich. They have a job to do, and anyone who attempts to get around it can end up with their site falling in the rankings, or being banned altogether from the search engine. You certainly don’t want that to happen.
Newer SEO methods continually evolve, and it’s not worth your time to rush into changes to accomodate all the evolutionary steps search engines make. You can do something today that works great, but it could backfire on you as the search engines learn about different methods of manipulation.
Now you’re probably wondering if there is a “best” SEO tactic that works today that will work tomorrow and next year. Of course there is, and it’s so obvious that it’s amazing so many websites seem to forget it: make sure you build your website for your visitors and not for Google. Good content that visitors want will work forever and you won’t end up banned from the search engines.
Here it is, straight from the horse’s mouth (Google’s webmaster guidelines): “Make pages primarily for users, not for search engines.”
In other words, work on your site’s content and don’t sweat the search engine algorithms. Google is telling you the “big secret” of what the best SEO strategy is today and tomorrow and for a long time: good content builds better rankings. and by concentrating your site design with visitors in mind, keywords will naturally be woven into your site rather than being stuffed into it like some sites do in an attempt to boost their rankings.
You don’t want to throw out the fundamentals of SEO. SEO is still an important goal. But trying the latest gimmicks isn’t going to get you much in the long run. Just use keywords responsibly, fill your site with good content, and make your site easy to navigate by humans and search engine spiders.
Like any business, you should cater to your visitors, not your critics. Good old fashioned relevant content is what will make the biggest difference in the long term. Search engine crawlers need to come up with the most accurate information possible. If your site offers the most accurate information then eventually you’ll cruise past the keyword stuffers and link buyers with a lasting place at the top of the search engine rankings.