The new SEO is sustainableJust a short while ago SEO (search engine optimisation) was all fairly simple – just collect lots of inbound links (links from other sites to your site), make sure your Alt tags were written for each article you posted, and hey presto .. you were on your way to good search engine rankings!

Well , time has moved on … and so has the world of search. Since 2012, Google has become super strict on anything that might possibly be considered spammy or an attempt to game the system. Basically, if you’ve got links from unsavoury sites, or you’ve paid for links, you could be penalised and find your rankings dropping off the charts. This has happened to some major online businesses and there has been a lot of pain and anguish out in the wilds of the internet.

Google’s intention is admirable – it wants all SEO efforts to be natural and democratic, in other words, they shouldn’t be contrived or involve the exchange of money for inbound links. So never ever fall for a scam that promises you X hundred inbound links for $50. That’s not natural and it’s not democratic because people with the most money can get the most links.

The new SEO

The new SEO is about natural and sustainable actions that increase the trust ranking of your site and your articles. Let’s boil it down to some simple guidelines:

  • Make your site a subject authority by regularly publishing fresh, original content on your site (Google loves original content and knows if your articles are new or rehashed from other sources)
  • Make sure your basic SEO elements are in place, i.e. title and description meta tags, and keyword-rich content (but not too rich!)
  • Have a social media presence so your articles and images are liked, re-posted, talked about, pinned, and facebooked

And here are some absolute do-nots:

  • Never ever under any circumstances pay anyone for getting other websites to link to your site. This is SEO spam and will trigger all kinds of Google wrath.
  • Also be wary of other sites that ask you to exchange links – check them out first and see if they are trustworthy authority sites. A link from a bad neighbourhood is worse than no link at all.
  • Don’t overdo your keywords in your text – Google can quickly see if your article is oveloaded with keywords. Use a keyword or keyphrase no more than about 3 times in an article. Once again, the text must read in a natural way and mustn’t sound like you’ve written it for a search engine.

OK, that’s enough on SEO for now. I’ll be writing more on the subject soon. If you need help with your small business SEO, be sure to give the Rabbit a call.

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