SEO – A New Better World of Search

Search Engine Optimization ServicesSEO is Dead…Not!

With all of the changes over the past year the drone of ‘SEO is Dead’ became unbearable. Two camps were really jumping on the catch phrase – amateur internet marketers who never really understood the strategy of marketing and were on the look out for a quick fix or a quick buck and those with ulterior motives – the group in the back room wearing black hats and using the headline to try and trick you into yet another SEO scam.

Simple SEO Will Transform Search and Improve Results for Everyone

Now out of the chaos and clatter clearer heads can be found. Early in the year I came across a wonderful article in SEJ – Search Engine Journal. It’s worth repeating and I encourage you to follow that link if you want to learn more about SEJ —

SEO in 2013: 7 Surprisingly Simple Factors That Will Take The Lead

by Jayson DeMers

2012 was rough for SEO experts due to radical changes in Google’s algorithms, including many updates to Panda, as well as the the introduction of Penguin. While content quality and inbound links continue to play major roles in organic rankings, let’s take a look at the other factors that will govern SEO in 2013.

2012 was The Year of Panda and Penguin

But it was also the year of Creating Value and the Emergence of Guest Posting as a legit and powerful way of building value online.

Let’s recap the major SEO patterns that emerged in 2012 –

  • Originally released in 2011, Google’s Panda algorithm went through multiple updates that kicked many low-quality websites out of the SERPs; tens of thousands of websites were affected. ~ and it wasn’t just low quality sites that felt the proverbial Google Slap! Some legit, authoritative
  • Google released its Penguin algorithm in April 2012, which changed the face of the industry, forcing many SEOs to adapt their tactics and strategies. Many companies that had engaged in Penguin-unfriendly SEO tactics were dropped from the search results due to Penguin, and companies that continued to engage in these tactics saw their rankings disappear, often without any warning. ~ Double Slap!
  • Google got much smarter, to the extent that it appears to be able to distinguish between content that adds real value and content that has been posted solely for SEO purposes. “Value” became an important subconscious factor — one that will dictate how Google perceives websites. ~ So, so important. Don’t miss this one – highlight it – dog ear it (tough on a computer I know).
  • Guest blogging emerged to become a very popular method of building credible links. Tactics and methods for acquiring guest blog links surfaced across the industry. ~ Can you say Networking?
  • Negative SEO became a hot topic of debate, to the extent that Google responded by launching the Disavow Link tool, which empowers web masters to specify backlinks that should be discarded or discounted by Google when it evaluates links to their website. ~ Still a Hot Topic today
  • Of the exploited SEO methods that were ousted and devalued, anchor text over-use was the most prominent. Remnants of websites that used “paid links” were kicked out too. ~ Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. Anchor text and back linking still remin significant factors in SEO and likely always will.  

2013: The 7 Factors That Will Determine Your Survival in SEO

If it were up to me, I’d simply focus on creating value for the reader — because ultimately, that should be the goal of any website. However, increasing competition may require you to employ strategic practices in a pragmatic approach to assist your rise to the top of the SERPs. Here are the tactics and strategies that will dominate the SEO landscape in 2013.

1. Quality of Content

Ultimately, it all comes down to the quality and value of the content on your website. Google has been very explicit this year about good-quality content, and we expect this trend to carry over into next year in full force. By content quality, the metrics are:

  • uniqueness of the content/topic
  • resourcefulness and information richness (i.e., no thin content)

2. Content Marketing

Content marketing is being touted as the next big thing. Experts have called it the new SEO. To an extent, this is true. As a general rule, content marketing attracts backlinks, and adds value for the user/reader. It is more challenging, because you have to generate more content of high quality, circulate it, and make sure your content gets published widely with ample social signals to generate substantial SEO value.

Since Google takes valuable content seriously, a solid content marketing strategy will be the key to climbing to the next level in SEO.

3. AuthorRank

AuthorRank has emerged as a vital metric in deciding SERPs, although studies about its value are still ongoing. One thing that we can be sure of in 2013 is that AuthorRank will add credibility and value to your website, and it will be vitally important for every web marketer.

4. Social Signals

After much debate and discussion, social signals have largely been accepted as valid ranking factors. In the next year (and probably in the years to follow), social signals will play a growing role. Shares, retweets, mentions, and perhaps most importantly, +1s are trophies every web marketer should be amassing. ~ and the next big evolution we’ve been stressing here at Release Dynamics is managing and building a big basket of peer reviews. We call it Reputation Marketing. And if you want a glimpse of how powerful this trend is and how it will literally change the landscape check out this recent TED Talk by Rachel Botsman

5. Mobile/Responsive Design

Although this does not directly influence the ranking of a page, it will play a role in your fortunes. Google was one of the first companies to become aware of this trend in web browsing due to the growing presence of tablets and smartphones. Responsive design may not be an explicit SEO factor, but in terms of usability, it is likely to be a highly influential element to consider in 2013. ~ If you haven’t already checked it out be sure to watch the quick but powerful video we have on our Mobile Marketing page.

6. Localization

Google’s growing preference for local websites and information has become evident in many searches. It’s safe to assume 2013 we’ll witness an increase in this preference. Websites that apply local SEO will enjoy higher rankings and visibility. This includes Google Maps data, listings, citations, and reviews on local information sites.

7. Media

Images and videos have become staples on the Internet. We’ve consistently seen that relevant results that include videos get ranked higher than text-only content. The further emergence of media content is an important development you can expect next year. It’s becoming essential to add relevant non-textual media to text content, because this adds value and makes the content more resourceful.

The above are some of the major trends or patterns that I believe will play a key role in SEO for 2013.

About Mark Kanty

Mark is the founder and Director of Release Dynamics. Established in 1990 this small business consultancy provides Practical Marketing Strategies to Release the Full Potential of small and medium sized businesses. The Web Site Marketing division of Release Dynamics specializes in taking clients to the top of the search engines for the unique high traffic keywords their customers are searching for.