It has been some time since Google Panda made its appearance and scared almost 90% of the website owners with its new ranking. Bringing down some of the giants in the online community Panda had spread the terror around making all webmasters apprehensive and nervous. Now when the storm seemed to settle down comes the next one that brings the news that Google is bringing even more new changes to its algorithms in 2011 and number is said to be 550. High time we get prepared and how?
As professionals of search engine optimisation maybe we should revise on some of the facts related to Google Panda that had leashed the storm. This way, at least we would be ready to face yet another attack and maybe even come out of it in flying colours. So here are a few factors that Panda considered and that helped some websites escape without harm:
Links from authority websites
Panda, in case you remember, was released to make quite a few websites, which ran crazily behind back links just to convince Google of their immense “popularity”, realize that adding their links to several link farms and stuffing their content with keywords will not bring their ranks up in Google neither will it bring them to the front positions in the search engines. Hence, we can safely surmise that link farms and spam links could make your ranking considerably low. Finding your URL in some of the quality and authority websites, on the other hand, can make people trust you and come to you with an open and positive mind.
And if you think that adding your link to a 100 websites is more important than adding to 10 websites of quality you are wrong. When it comes to linking, quality definitely takes priority over quantity. And these include avoiding some of the sub standard article directories as well that accepts content of any type and quality.
Relevant and useful content
When it comes to SEO, content has always been ‘king’, and there was a time when websites were filled with content that was often irrelevant and filled with keywords meaninglessly. Google panda is all about taking out all those websites that clung to such low quality content. Today what matters is relevance and that includes not only the relevance of what you are talking about but also the relevance of your keywords to the overall purpose and content of the website.
In other words, there is no point in just stuffing the website with any content. What you add should be valuable and useful for the readers to take their next action for which they visited your website in the first place. Content for the sake of content is an absolute no, no. No relevance, no ranking either. And this means your site has to be free from such space fillers including too many advertisements and banners, decorative pictures, etc.
Social media and networking
The very fact that Google itself launched its own social networking tool Google+ indicates the extent of importance it gives to connecting with people through social media. Besides the obvious benefits of connecting to your customers and letting them in the loop about your business, social networking brings you the much wanted love of Google as well. Perhaps now, more than ever. FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, MySpace, and right now Google+ – all makes you the favourite of all major search engines, Google definitely.
That’s right. Get a video camera, go ahead and record what you sell, products or services. For the very fact the video centric websites like YouTube and MetaCafe escaped from the slap of the Panda shows the significance Google places on videos. Also, you would be killing two birds with one stone by adding video in such websites for you get a bonus advantage of convincing your customers of the quality of your service by letting them watch what you do.
That sums up some of the basic requirements for an online business in today’s SEO scenario. While you would find even more changes coming up in the next few months, you only gain by preparing your site for the existing needs of the search engines like Google. Remember, as the American baseball player Brooks Robinson said, “If you’re not practicing, somebody else is, somewhere, and he’ll be ready to take your job.”