SEO Services & Tactics for 2014
To learn Search Engine Optimization is not an easy task for anyone these days. Particularly if you’re a business owner. You likely have received, almost daily, emails from search engine consultants offering SEO services telling you about recent Google algorithm changes like Panda and most recently Hummingbird. This stuff is confusing mainly because it changes so often.
Google as a search engine is evolving.
Just as users of Google and the internet as a whole are evolving.
We all search on smartphones, tablets, and our desktop computers. Have you noticed that you likely search differently on each device? The way we search really depends on what form of media we’re using. Pay attention next time you go through a day searching on multiple devices and you’ll notice what I’m talking about.
Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is also evolving. The “old” SEO focused more on keywords and exact keyword matches. The “new” SEO is more focused on quality content being published regularly and being shared via social media networks. Keywords and basic, fundamental meta data is still important, and Google expects your website to be built compliant to web standards.
So how do you learn SEO and keep up with the changes?
Sustainable SEO Tactics, Methods, & Strategy
So in order to help you understand Google’s brand new and ever evolving search algorithm, Hummingbird, we’re going to share an infographic, created by Positionly outlining sustainable search engine optimization tactics that will allow you to set up a comprehensive SEO strategy for 2014.
This data compares the “old” SEO to the “new” SEO. These are sustainable and algorithm-proof SEO methods that work in 2014.
Summary of Sustainable SEO Tactics
Back in the day, we focused our on-site SEO on generating traffic and boosting rankings. We also focused on driving organic traffic from search engines. Essentially, one would need some analytical and a lot of technical knowledge in order to properly SEO a website.
In 2014 the focused has switched to user engagement and brand exposure. I see this in my work everyday, as pre 2004, I came from a mostly traditional marketing background. Marketers need to aim for more user engagement and increasing brand exposure digitally. While rankings are certainly important, they are not the only metric and certainly not your end goal.
Our focus has shifted from just organic traffic from search engines to focusing on social media referral traffic as well as earned media referral traffic from other websites. We now need less technical knowledge and much more marketing knowledge. As we know that information changes almost daily so staying on top of emerging trends is essential.
With “old” SEO we created content in order to generate clicks and pages views. Our on-page optimization was solely based on creating keyword rich titles and headlines. We focused on one keyword and filled on-page copy and anchor text with the exact keyword. We only competed for search engine rankings and our business had very little, if any, personal exposure. We were focused on numbers.
As mentioned, the above is still needed, but your digital marketing efforts must have more attached to that. These days we are creating content for user engagement, conversions, and revenue. Content marketing should be an essential part of your mix.
Smart SEO consultants in your market will be optimizing content and websites for users and not search engines. Creative SEO agencies will use SEO copy writing, catchy headlines and engaging content and focus on keyword diversity. Using a mix of relevant keywords and phrases mixing short and long tail keywords throughout the on-page copy.
Gone are the days of competing only in search engines. Today we have social media platforms and Blogs. If you want to remain competitive in 2014 your company must be blogging regularly, sharing relevant and useful content that your readers will feel compelled to share.
A brand’s personality is ever so important these days when compared to the days of “old” SEO. Remember the days when brands didn’t talk back? Today we need to pay attention to people’s demands and engage with our online communities.
Remember the days when SEO was all about Link building, scoring backlinks, and link for link exchanges? People still try and do that today. While a good link building strategy is still a good plan for SEO, Google and the other search engines are hip to SEO BS and will punish you severely if you try and game their system with shady link building practices.
It’s all about link earning today. Website that have high-quality and industry-trusted websites linking back to their content will be rewarded from Google and other search engines with rankings and ultimately website traffic.
It’s important to think about building relationships with high-quality content producers. Don’t try and do link trade offs, but have super useful content on your website that they will find relevant and enjoy. Link back to their blog article or website page whether you get a link back or not.
Marketers who commit more time and budget to creating useful and sharable content will see positive results with revenue and ROI. These days SEO is best pursued as a long-term strategy and not the short term gains of “old” SEO.
+ SOCIAL MEDIA
There was a focus on using keywords in social media a few years ago. That may be part of social media optimization (SMO) but as with SEO, there’s more to focus on these days. Social media was primarily used for pushing content. We also would look for exposure using article submission sites and social bookmarking tactics. The word was leaving comments just to get backlinks.
In 2014 the Hashtag will rule over keywords in social media. Do you know the difference between Hashtags and Keywords? Today, social media for brands is used for communication based around the content being produced. No better way to start a conversation than with awesome content!
If your content gets shared enough, you could get viral exposure thanks to the work you put into creating that great content.
Social media needs to be social in the world of “new” SEO. Participation in a community is important. share your experiences, help people with their challenges, and build relationships and you or your brand’s personal authority.
As you can now tell, the “new” SEO is all about Content + Search + Social. Something VPDM has been doing since 2008. These there elements are the 3 pillars of digital marketing. They all must work in tandem with each other. On shouldn’t be executed without the other two already humming along in place.
Check out the infographic below for more sustainable SEO methods.
If you’d like to talk about “new” SEO can help your website and search rankings, please reach out and start the conversation.
What are your thoughts on the “new” SEO? Please share in the comments.
SEO vs. New SEO – Sustainable and Algorithm-Proof Search Marketing Methods That Work – infographic by positionly.