Search engine optimization (SEO) has been one of the most natural and effective methods of getting organic search engine traffic to your website or blog for years. It is also one of the methods that has changed the most since some Internet marketer uttered “keyword phrase” for the first time. Too many website owners still struggle to attract potential customers and clients are the same tired as SEO techniques they learned before the millennium. Stop wasting time and learn what search engine optimization practices are outdated and should be abandoned.
Keyword Percentages and Keyword Stuffing
Back before Google’s a zoological-named algorithm changes started marching onto the scene, most website and blog owners concentrated on finding a marketable keyword or keyword phrase and then tweaking all of their content and code to include a specific percentage of those terms. The result was a glut of sites that were written specifically for search engines and not for people who might happen upon them.
These days, there are no recommended keyword percentages to focus on and stuffing as many keywords onto a site as possible may actually get the site penalized instead of boosted in the rankings.
Writing Content for Search Engines Instead of People
As mentioned above, putting as many keyword phrases into an article, website page or blog post as possible used to be the method to attract search engine spiders to your site. That technique resulted in unreadable, often automatically spun articles that did not inform or entertain anyone who stopped at the site to read them.
The focus on search engines and the belief that online success is a numbers game should be abandoned in favor of actions that form a relationship between your company, yourself and the buying public. Instead of particular keyword phrases repeated, practice latent semantic indexing (LSI) by including naturally associated words and phrases that are on topic. Instead of using a template to reach a specific word count, number of headline tags or bulleted lists, concentrate on engaging the reader.
Link Building is Not a Numbers Game
Old SEO logic told marketers to get as many links back to their website as possible. This still leads some site owners to broadcast their link on worthless directories, spam it on blogs, forums and social media sites and even pay people to disseminate it on trash sites all across the web. The number of links you have to your site still has some benefit to higher SERPs, but it should not be focused of any link building campaign. Webmasters must abandon the idea that if you link it, they will come.
Search engine rankings focus on the human side of the equation these days. Logic states that having a link to your site on a directory with no traffic makes little sense and won’t attract interested parties. If you want your links to work, they must get in front of the right people. Popular, niche-specific sites that include your link could attract direct traffic as well as improve your website’s placement in the popular search engines.
Abandon outdated SEO concepts that focus on creating a site for search engines instead of people. Diverse content with natural language, smart linking on sites that have the type of traffic you want and building relationships through off-site content and social media will get you a lot farther and practices of the past.