Offering high quality content has always been the key to ranking at the top of search results page, but Google has their say as to why.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM), which includes Pay Per Click advertising (PPC) and Search Engine Optimization (SEO), has been one of the most effective and popular forms of online marketing for the last decade. In fact, recent surveys showed that 85 percent of online retailers chose SEM as the most effective way to acquire customers. Key drivers behind SEM have historically been organic traffic and affiliate marketing.
However, many businesses have found ways to manipulate Google’s algorithms in order to increase their website’s web ranking, thereby making sure that they increase their web traffic. This is known as “black hatting” and it’s something that Google has worked hard to eliminate. In fact, their new updates have eliminated the ability to manipulate how Google’s search ranking works. What you should be asking is how their new update will affect your SEM?
Eliminating Reliance on KeywordsSearch engine optimization was often heavily reliant on the use of keywords in the past. So much so that companies were able to completely manipulate the system by stuffing their content and websites with keywords to the point where the content suffered. In some cases the content was poor no matter what, it was simply used as a vehicle for keywords. Google’s new algorithm updates have eliminated the focus on keywords in order to reward websites that focus on quality content instead.
A New Focus on High Quality Content
Google’s new updates are focused on rewarding websites that provide high quality content since this is what consumers want. You can no longer release a high volume of keyword-stuffed content and expect to climb the search engine rankings – in fact, this practice can actually harm your ranking. While Google hasn’t explicitly stated how its algorithm judges the quality of content on a website, experts have formed some educated opinions on this matter.
If a piece of content has been written by someone with a reputation as a high quality writer, such as a reputable journalist or blogger, then Google’s algorithm will rank that content higher. This has led to Google+ becoming an incredibly important facet of many online marketing campaigns due to its Google Authorship feature. Google Authorship provides a photo, linked to a Google+ account, and a byline of the author on the content that appears on the search results page. This makes your your content more attractive to readers, and the connection with your Google+ profile creates a verified connection between the content and you.
Many experts also believe that the way readers engage with your content will now have a bearing on your website’s ranking as well. This would not only include the amount of traffic visiting a blog page, but also how long the average reader spends on that page and how many comments are made on the content of that page.
Organic links are thought to help increase page rankings as well. This means that social engagement with your content will certainly help. For example, the number of likes or shares that your content receives will help increase its ranking. The same goes for comments made via social media on the content that you have posted, such as Twitter, Google+ or Facebook. Because of this, it’s important that you add social share buttons to all of the content that you post on your blog – making it easier for readers to share your content with their social circle. The importance of social media in your SEM strategy can’t be understated. In fact, according to recent data collected from a survey done of 2,500 different firms found that 74 percent of them integrate their SEO efforts with their social media marketing.
Google is tired of having websites with poor content reach high page rankings because these sites have been able to manipulate their own algorithm. The new updates should help eliminate shady practices in favour of high quality sites ranking at the top of the page. This will most likely be done by ranking content through authorship and reader engagement, which means that businesses that haven’t been focused on creating high quality content as a major part of their SEM strategy will have no other choice but to do so.