Search Engine Optimization is a complicated business that can really help any company to thrive. Unfortunately however, over time the whole process has been somewhat misrepresented as a simple system of getting as many links as possible pointing to your site. This dying breed of so called ‘SEO gurus’, are so desperate to get links to their site that they will use any trick in the book to spread their site around the net with little regard for quality, suitability or value for the readers.
This however is bad SEO and will actually prove to be more destructive for the website in the long run. While flooding the internet with links will certainly bring you short term dividends, in the long run it will only upset visitors and mean that your site gets avoided like the plague.
Think about it, if you click on a link to a website on another site that you normally trust and find out that it’s nothing like it claims to be, complicated to navigate, or full of content from article spinners, would you really spend more than ten minutes there?
Likewise, if you click on a search result and find the website you’ve discovered to be poorly designed and unhelpful you’d be most likely to just click ‘back’ and try another link. We’re increasingly aware of the importance of high quality links these days. But are you also thinking about the quality of the traffic coming from those links?
High Quality Traffic is More Important Than High Quantity
So you’re not just looking at getting a high quantity of traffic, but also a high quality. Once you’ve got visitors onto your website then you need to get them to want to stay there if you’re going to get them to click on ads or buy products. The real way to optimize your website for search engines then, is to make your site genuinely offer the answers that the visitor is looking for.
This will then pay for itself in terms of links too as your visitors start to talk about your site on message boards, dig it on a social bookmarking site, put links on their own sites, or reference it on Wikipedia and Yahoo Answers. This is called ‘link baiting’, and if done properly it will mean that all the work is done for you and you can concentrate on making worth while content.
One link from a respected user on ‘Reddit’ can multiply your revenue from AdSense alone by ten for that day and it’s more than a little rewarding to see this happen. That is quality traffic.
Staying Relevant for Your Audience
Posting your links everywhere can also actually damage your site too. For example, if you have links to your site on lots of websites that seem unrelated then Google will penalize you for spamming and your page rank will suffer as a result. Similarly, if you keep filling your site with worthwhile and regular content then Google and other websites will recognize this and your search rankings will reflect that.
Similarly, you can also help Google by designing appropriate headings and meta tags which will tell search engines precisely what is on each page. If your pages of content seem relevant and many, then Google will start to like the site as much as your visitors will.
So in short, there’s a lot more to SEO than just posting links. Designing worthwhile content, adding regular updates, designing good navigation and using meta tags are all just as important if not more so. And just as important is to make sure that you are then attracting the kinds of visitors to your content – the kind that will specifically enjoy the content you’ve created.
Google has been very cleverly designed with the customer in mind and there’s a big difference between working the system and abusing it.