Over the past couple of years Google has implemented a number of algorithm changes (Panda and Penguin) that have helped blur the lines between search engine optimization (SEO) and content marketing. And that’s a good thing! When I first started optimizing websites back in the day it was more science and less art; link building and keyword density ratios made for a rather scientific approach to constructing and optimizing sites for search. This has all changed and frankly we have Google to thank!
For anyone in SEO, Panda and Penguin has had an impact. Site rankings and organic traffic has likely declined for at least one or two clients, but if you look at those clients with an eye toward user (prospect/customer) centricity you’d see that they’re likely off the mark. That is their sites are likely content deficient and not really focused on delivering information of value to their customers and prospects. For this reason, Google has helped clear the way for companies and websites that deliver value (information), and isn’t this what we all search for anyway?
I do strongly believe that there still needs to be fundamental SEO performed for all websites. I think every company should have a…
1) well-researched keyword list; one that evolves over time. I think that….
2) smart usage of keywords in creating website copy, content, and Meta data is still of strong value. I also strongly believe that link building and directory submission strategies that worked only months ago should be trashed in favor of…
3) real link building. Take advantage of your strategic partners (technology or otherwise) to create meaningful links; read and comment on relevant blogs and create links of value (not spamming); use directories but limit yourself to those that are of value to your industry.
Creating valuable optimized content is an art. It needs to be well-written, help educate your target audience, and take multiple formats. According to MarketingProfs 2013 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends report, B2B content marketers are spending 33 percent of their overall budgets on content marketing, which is up from 26 percent last year, and 54 percent plan on increasing spend next year. This is significant and follows a trend that sees greater emphasis on producing good content that most think will continue for the foreseeable future.
It’s this content that Google wants to index and serve up in searches. And it’s this content that is taking the driver’s seat in the search engine optimization efforts of smart marketers. It’s all about content! In coming blogs we’ll address the three areas of SEO that we still feel are important, and share some content tips and techniques that can help clear the roadblocks to producing decent content, so come back!
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