When it comes to Search Engine Optimization (SEO), there are a lot of misconceptions. These misconceptions stem primarily from the belief that there are only a certain number of people privy to the changing Google Algorithm. The truth is that the ever-changing algorithm is completely unknown to everyone. That doesn’t mean that based on experience we can’t make the right decisions to help ensure that a website shows up for relevant searches. Relevance is determined by how well a search result matches the information requested by a search engine user.
Why does Google Make it so Difficult?
The answer may shock you, they don’t. Their goal is to provide users with the answers they seek, not trillions of webpages. For any query, there are thousands, if not millions, of webpages with helpful information. Their objective is to match a user’s query with the best information, not just any of the millions.
Google is constantly improving and updating their technologies to provide users with better results. Their objective remains to evolve their algorithm and provide answers fast and seamlessly, which results in over 600 algorithm changes a year.
What are algorithms?
Algorithms are computer programs that look for clues to provide search engine users exactly what they want. Google’s algorithms rely on more than 200 unique clues that make it possible to guess what a user is looking for. The clues are made up of things like terms on a website, freshness of content, geography, and PageRank (a system developed by Google to rank web pages).
Nothing to Fear
A marketing firm that specializes in digital marketing knows exactly how to make your page relevant for the right searches. The focus will be on new, relevant, quality, content (text, images, videos), structural mark up, appropriate titles and meta data, effective keyword use based on extensive research, and quality inbound links. These techniques are often referred to as white hat optimization.
Once you understand Google’s objective, you can easily see why they take the steps they do to ensure that the information they are serving up provides answers for their users. Thinking from Google’s perspective can make optimization much clearer.
The Right Way, and The Wrong Way
Unfortunately, there is a wrong way to handle optimization. All to often, companies sell what is known as black hat SEO techniques. These techniques include hidden content stuffed with keywords, dishonest Meta keyword stuffing, doorway or gateway pages, and link farming.
Tricks don’t work. Thus the Google algorithm comes into play to ensure that pages that are using black hat optimization techniques don’t get ranked high, in fact, they get flagged, and will likely not show up at all.
If it sounds to good to be true it usually is. Good search engine optimization takes time, and is mainly composed of new content that is relevant and good. There are absolutely no shortcuts. A page must be built correctly, and constantly maintained to retain relevance.
Hiring a marketing firm to handle your SEO is a decision that should not be taken lightly. Take the time to interview and research several firms before trusting your website to them. It is much easier to make the right decision from the get-go than to have to fix a flagged website.