There was a time when filling your website’s pages with relevant keywords and incorporating a variety of search engine optimization (SEO) tricks would all but ensure you would rank high in search engine results. There were plenty of SEO tricks back then, and many proved to be highly effective. But, as they say, all good (or maybe not so good) things eventually come to an end.
Search engines make their money by selling ads, and need lots of users in order to sell those ads. It is only natural, then, that search engines continuously improve the methods they use to deliver the best, most relevant search results possible. As it turns out, they are very good at it – and getting even better.
It is no secret that Google adjusts its search algorithms more often than most people take a shower. One of the primary purposes of these tweaks is to seek out and destroy the tactics being used to surreptitiously increase a site’s ranking in search engine results. Consequently, websites filled with pages populated with content created solely with search engines – rather than visitors – in mind are only going to continue their steady fall into oblivion.
This leads to the obvious question: What do we do now? Well, we do what we should have been doing all along. We fill our web pages with high quality content that is well-written, informative, and of interest to our target markets. Search engines will only continue to hone their ability to recognize high quality content, while putting the kibosh on SEO tricksters.
If you populate your website with informative, quality content, it will naturally include words and phrases that are relevant to your topic or to the searches your target audience will perform to find products or services like yours. As long as the site is built properly (see our posts on titles and headlines), this is what it takes to for search engines to prominently display your pages.
(Need help with your content? We offer a ghostwriting service for our clients. If you're not our client, see if your webmaster or marketing advisor can help.)
The days of keyword stuffing have passed, and poor quality content written just to appeal to the search engines will no longer be so easily forgiven. SEO strategies that worked wonders before will now do little to increase your ranking, and their effectiveness will continue to dwindle in the coming months and years.
Providing useful, high quality content that educates your visitors and holds their interest is your best option. Rather than fanatically calculating your keyword density and obsessing over whether “web site” or “website” has more local search juice, simply deliver good, useful content that meets the needs of your target market.