Learn Modern SEO by Returning to the High School
How do you detect the human response? It’s really simple. Bring a few, carefully selected, animals with you. A penguin and 25 panda bears will do the job.
Google’s empire was built on the perfection of the Google Search Engine. Fast, reliable, smart search results connecting many petabytes of information, is the concept behind the great success of the colorful information detector. If anyone wants to get found online, he sure has to find a way to enter the top search results.
Traditional SEO used to be based on two things. Proper formatting of the website content so that search engines could understand it, and online recommendations for the website, AKA links. The SEO game was rather easy for the SEO experts although it sounded Greek to anyone else (does that mean that Greek SEO experts had a significant advantage? :D). And then Google decided that SEO was not to be exploited by the experts anymore, and changed its algorithm in a way that the algorithm could now understand the human factor of the owner behind websites. Panda Updates, Penguin Update, EMD Update... What now?
Well, the fact is that SEO just got easier. It got easier for the good information brokers and harder for the bad ones. This in return yields significantly better search results to the Google user. How do you become a good information broker in the new search engine era? How do you pin your online business to the top? For starters, a good information broker has to deliver quality information. But if you are that good, how do you make the world listen? Learn to write essays!!!
Diversify heavily! Although writing for a book or a school essay is much different than writing for an online audience, the core concept of a good essay still applies. You have to diversify. People don’t want to get bored when reading and Google needs to understand that you are writing for people. When optimizing for a target keyword, stick to the following steps:
- Keep the keyword density below 3%.
- Use LSI synonyms and related words. When your content contains LSIs, Google bots understand that your webpage is relevant to the subject and sets focus to your audience.
- Avoid duplicate content as hell. Do not copy from other sources and do not use the same content in your page over and over again. Use as many variations as you can. A real person will enjoy your reading! The same stands for Google.
- Use proper internal linking. Wikipedia is still the role model. Whenever there is room for a contextual link inside your text, grab the chance and use it.
- Switch the anchor text a lot. Follow this rule both for on-page and off-page links. Use the base keyword, synonyms, generic expressions and urls.
- Use images and videos with your posts. All images have an alt text, a filename and the image metadata. Avoid the temptation to use the same keyword for all those fields. Use synonyms in the alt text, but insert them in a meaningful way. The alt text is supposed to describe what the image is all about. "Running Socks" is not as good as "Photo of the running socks model". Use the main keyword or synonyms in the image or video filename, using dashes between the words. "running-socks.jpg" is a perfect example of a SEO friendly filename. Complete the Tags, Title and Author fields in the image metadata (screenshot in Image 2).
- Let your content flow like a good essay.
Since links are the most important part for any SEO strategy, your link building strategy will have to produce links that seem to grow in a natural way. Analyzing bullet 5 further, there are three types of anchor text:
- Normal Keyword Anchor Text: This is the anchor text that contains the main keyword or the LSI synonyms and related keywords.
- Generic Expression Anchor Text: In this case we talk about the anchor text that contains generic expressions such as "click here", "more information", "learn more", "visit this page" etc.
- URL Anchor Text: These are anchor texts that coincide with the underlying urls. Yes, you can diversify them easily. Regarding the needs of the current blog, I would go for batcic.com, www.batcic.com, http://www.batcic.com, http://batcic.com, http://www.batcic.com, http://www.batcic.com/blog.aspx.
Aim for a link building strategy that will produce all of these types of links!
Suppose that your content is good and fun to read. If your content gets picked up, you will most likely get the social response which indicates the human factor. Likes, plus ones, shares, reblogs, repins, spontaneous inbound links will follow. Do you know what stands between quality online content waiting to be read and the content that is actually read and spread? Yeap, you guessed it, it’s the Almighty Title!
In the opening paragraphs we talked about the petabytes of information standing as droplets in the web ocean. Like it or not, there is a lot of information out there and picking up the next source is extremely fast. That’s why we skip content and that’s why we skip entire posts. A catchy title won’t let the RSS, Google Plus, Twitter and Facebook user skip your content and will be the essential part of your page that will trigger the human response.
In an older post I had talked about the title patterns that seem to attract attention. Titles that solve problems at first sight. Well... try to use the "Plus One" advice as much as you can. These titles come to serve SEO in a second level, now that the changes in Google Algorithm seem to have made the search results difficult to exploit. We put all our efforts to trigger the human response and we try so hard to provide content that will get us spontaneous incoming links. Although it is highly unlikely that someone else will use a link to your site using your desired keywords in the anchor text (even if he wants to, this will probably look unnatural), it is much more possible that he will use those keywords if your title contains them! I started this paragraph saying:
In an older post I had talked about...
And it looked natural. I could have started the same paragraph using:
In "10 Title Patterns that Stand Out from the RSS Feed Crowd. Plus One..." I had talked about...
And it would still sound perfect! I am sure that everyone gets the point.
Modern SEO requires...
... thinking about people and not thinking about search engines! People like to read interesting things and don’t like to get bored. They like to read essays. Learn how to write and format essays on topics and offer them to the online communities. The rest will follow. Google doesn’t want its content delivered to it anymore. It prefers to steal it from real life!
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