SEO DOs And DONT’S According To Google: Mixed Signals?

    March 20, 2012
    Chris Crum
    Comments are off for this post.

Google is talking a lot about SEO these days. In a recent webmaster discussion at SXSW, Google’s Matt Cutts spoke about some changes Google is working on that would seem to make SEO matter less, in that sites with good, quality content that don’t do a lot of SEO could potentially rank just as well, or better than a bigger site with a bigger SEO budget and a lot of SEO tactics implemented. The whole thing appears to be more about Google getting better at not helping sites just because they employ a lot of grey hat/borderline black hat tactics. Google has always tried to do this, but based on what Cutts said, it sounds like they’re about to get better at it.

Changes to Google’s algorithm have the ability to make or break businesses. Google is sending out the signal that you should worry less about the current SEO trends, and more about producing great content, and that they’re “leveling the playing field” for sites that don’t pay as much attention to SEO. Obviously great content is a positive, but at the same time, Google is showing us each month all of the changes it is making, and all the while, providing tips about how to do certain SEO things better. Is Google sending mixed signals? Just how much should webmasters worry about optimization? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Google Changes To Come

WebProNews spoke with former Googler and Google Webmaster Central creator Vanessa Fox about it, after she wrote her own blog post, sharing her thoughts about Google’s approach to SEO. In her post, she wrote, “Some are worried that Google will begin to penalize sites that have implemented search engine optimization techniques. My thoughts? I think that some site owners should worry. But whether or not you should depends on what you mean by search engine optimization.”

“Matt talked about finding ways to surface smaller sites that may be poorly optimized, if, in fact, those sites have the very best content,” she said in the post. “This is not anything new from Google. They’ve always had a goal to rank the very best content, regardless of how well optimized or not it may be. And I think that’s the key. If a page is the very best result for a searcher, Google wants to rank it even if the site owner has never heard of title tags. And Google wants to rank it if the site owner has crafted the very best title tag possible. The importance there is that it’s the very best result.”

There has been a lot of discussion about it in the SEO community, and there will no doubt be plenty around SES New York this week. Some of the talk has been blown out of proportion, and Cutts appears to feel that the press has contributed to this. For the record, when we first reported on it, we linked to the full audio from the panel, as Cutts provided, and since then, he’s linked to the full transcript for those who don’t have time to listen to an hour’s worth of audio. We’ve also pointed to this in previous coverage. Cutts seems to have given his seal of approval to Fox’s take on the whole thing:

Rob Snell did a full transcript of the recent #sxsw session with Danny Sullivan, Duane Forrester, & me: http://t.co/RCGR99Ff 21 hours ago via Tweet Button ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

@mattcutts ah thanks! That might come in useful against the press who are taking some quotes WAY out of context. 21 hours ago via Osfoora for Mac ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

@yoast yup, totally agree. Vanessa did a good write up too. 16 hours ago via Twitter for Android ·  Reply ·  Retweet ·  Favorite · powered by @socialditto

Following is a snippet from our previous article, discussing the Google changes with Fox, because it’s highly relevant to the larger story:

If you’ve listened to or read what was said, you’ll notice that the whole thing was in response to a question about mom and pops, which might make you wonder if brand is a significant part of what’s at play.

“I don’t think it’s about just mom and pop vs. big brands,” Fox tells WebProNews. “Lots of big brands don’t know the first thing about SEO. I think (total guess on my part) the sites that will be negatively impacted are those that focus on algorithms and build content/sites based on the things what they think the algorithms are looking for. The kind of sites where someone didn’t say ‘I want this page to rank for query X. How can this page best answer what the searcher is asking about X’ but instead said ‘I want this page to rank for query X. How many times should I repeat X in my title, heading, content on the page, internal links…”

Vanessa Fox Talks to WebProNews“I think it’s still useful (and not negative) to make sure the words that searchers are using are on the page, but some sites go well beyond this and get so caught up in what they think the algorithms are doing that they forget to make sure the content is useful,” she adds.

“As far as sites that will see a positive from this, I think it will likely be both small sites (B&B in Napa that titles their home page ‘home’ vs. an affiliate site that sells wine gift baskets) and large brands (sites that use a lot of Flash),” says Fox. “I think foundational SEO practices (like those I describe in my article) will continue to be beneficial for sites.”

When she talks about SEO in her article, by the way, she says she’s talking about “using search data to better understand your audience and solve their problems (by creating compelling, high-quality content about relevant topics to your business)” and “understanding how search engine crawl and index sites and ensuring that your site’s technical infrastructure can be comprehensively crawled and indexed.”

Interestingly, though Google always puts out webmaster tips and videos, there seem to have been quite a few nuggets making their way out of the company’s blogs and YouTube channels over the past week or so – the time since the SXSW session took place.

Last week, for example, Google’s Developer Programs Tech Lead Maile Ohye talked about Pagination and SEO, complete with a 37-page slideshow:

In fact, it looks that this might be part of a new series of SEO tips from Ohye, as another one has come out about SEO mistakes and “good ideas”:

SEO DOs And DON’TS, According To Google

According to Google, these are some things you should not do in your SEO efforts:

1. Having no value proposition: Try not to assume that a site should rank #1 without knowing why it’s helpful to searchers (and better than the competition :)

2. Segmented approach: Be wary of setting SEO-related goals without making sure they’re aligned with your company’s overall objectives and the goals of other departments. For example, in tandem with your work optimizing product pages (and the full user experience once they come to your site), also contribute your expertise to your Marketing team’s upcoming campaign. So if Marketing is launching new videos or a more interactive site, be sure that searchers can find their content, too.

3. Time-consuming workarounds: Avoid implementing a hack rather than researching new features or best practices that could simplify development (e.g., changing the timestamp on an updated URL so it’s crawled more quickly instead of easily submitting the URL through Fetch as Googlebot).

4. Caught in SEO trends: Consider spending less time obsessing about the latest “trick” to boost your rankings and instead focus on the fundamental tasks/efforts that will bring lasting visitors.

5. Slow iteration: Aim to be agile rather than promote an environment where the infrastructure and/or processes make improving your site, or even testing possible improvements, difficult.

On the flipside, this is what Google says you should do:

1. Do something cool: Make sure your site stands out from the competition — in a good way!

2. Include relevant words in your copy: Try to put yourself in the shoes of searchers. What would they query to find you? Your name/business name, location, products, etc., are important. It’s also helpful to use the same terms in your site that your users might type (e.g., you might be a trained “flower designer” but most searchers might type [florist]), and to answer the questions they might have (e.g., store hours, product specs, reviews). It helps to know your customers.

3. Be smart about your tags and site architecture: Create unique title tags and meta descriptions; include Rich Snippets markup from schema.org where appropriate. Have intuitive navigation and good internal links.

4. Sign up for email forwarding in Webmaster Tools: Help us communicate with you, especially when we notice something awry with your site.

5. Attract buzz: Natural links, +1s, likes, follows… In every business there’s something compelling, interesting, entertaining, or surprising that you can offer or share with your users. Provide a helpful service, tell fun stories, paint a vivid picture and users will share and reshare your content.

6. Stay fresh and relevant: Keep content up-to-date and consider options such as building a social media presence (if that’s where a potential audience exists) or creating an ideal mobile experience if your users are often on-the-go.

Of course, Google has continued to put out the usual Webmaster videos from Matt Cutts. He did one, or example, on meta tags, talking about how “you shouldn’t spend any time on the meta keywords tag,” but how Google does use the meta description tag.

In that video, Cutts says, “So if you’re a good SEO, someone who is paying attention to conversion and not just rankings on trophy phrases, then you might want to pay some attention to testing different meta descriptions that might result in more clickthrough and possibly more conversions.” Emphasis added.

“So don’t do anything deceptive, like you say you’re about apples when you’re really about red widgets that are completely unrelated to apples,” he adds. “But if you have a good and a compelling meta description, that can be handy.”

The More Things Change, The More They Stay The Same

This advice is basically in line with the position Google has had for years, which is also inline with what Fox had to say. It doesn’t sound like much has changed, but Google is getting better at distinguishing the good from the bad. Or at least that’s what they want SEOs to believe.

I’m not saying they don’t have things in the works that are improvements, but Google has a broader issue with relevancy in results, and it would certainly be inaccurate to say that nothing has changed. Google makes changes to its algorithm every single day, and these days they are even going so far as to list at least some of the changes publicly each month. These lists are invaluable to webmasters looking to boost their Google presence, because while Google may say to not chase specific changes, they also show webmasters the areas where Google actually is changing how it does things. Ignoring them is foolish. That doesn’t mean you have to exploit them in a black hat kind of way, but you can certainly be aware of them, and look for tweaks that may have a direct effect on your current strategy.

For example, if Google says it is putting fresher image results in image searches, perhaps you should consider how visual your content is.

It will be interesting to see what this month’s changes are, as well as the changes Cutts discussed at SXSW. Will they make Google’s results more relevant? If enough sites follow the advice Google is giving, will the results get better? On the other hand, how much will it matter if you’re following all of Google’s advice if Google’s getting better at “leveling the playing field’ for those who aren’t paying attention to SEO at all? Those who aren’t paying attention to SEO probably aren’t reading articles like this or following Google’s webmaster blogs and videos. All of that said, doing the things Google says to do probably won’t hurt.

What do you think? Should you spend less time worrying about SEO trends, like Google suggests? Let us know in the comments.

  • http://fpluckycharms.net Carl Donovan

    Ohye says, “At Google, we’ve been known to say that the main constant about SEO is that it’s constantly evolving.” Yeah, no BS. And the reason it’s constantly “evolving” is because Google keeps raising the bar and making it increasingly difficult to rank without forking over big checks for AdWords.

    Then they have the stones to tell us that we’re focusing on the wrong things by trying to rank in organic search? Does that sound condescending to anyone but me?

  • Steve

    Don’t buy it for one minute. I compete in a very narrow competitive niche for over 7 years now. This is what I see. Google tends to tap exact match domains for that particular keyword in the domain, that’s why its bolded in the results. Second, if you don’t build links you don’t rank….period. No matter what Google says about its TOS you MUST link.

    I’ve got better and more content…and fresher content and still I cannot rank with the EMDs.

    So do I buy Google’s claims about content…..ABSOLUTELY NOT!!

    • http://www.personalcloudstorage.org/ Thomas

      I with you steve on this one. Sure you can produce the greatest content ever produced in your niche. But without links the page will not rank. And you cannot sit back and hope others will ink to you if they cannot find the page in the search engines.

      Unfortunately it IS still all about getting links!

    • http://www.pearlisland.co.uk TJ

      Agree! My website is up to date with good content, but now it is disappeared on Google Search. I felt Google is saying one thing, but doing another!

  • http://www.fastmetrics.com Cody Miller


    I would have to agree! Google makes ZIP from organic search. AdWords on the other hand….

    Seems to be more emphasis on social media and conversions.

    Most direct way to send a visitor to a landing page for a conversion? AdWords.

    • http://www.affinitytrack.com Ron

      Google may make zip from organic search directly, but it seems to me their whole business model is based on it. They give away something free (organic search) for the opportunity to sell advertising (AdWords). If their organic search results are not relevant then fewer people use Google search and the impact directly affects their ability to sell advertising.

      • http://www.fastmetrics.com Cody Miller

        That’s a good point Ron.

        Without users – the demand is just not there to upsell advertising.

        Pretty smart business model really. Organic search can be considered the ‘free version’.

  • http://wallartanddecor.net/ John

    Google wants to give more relevant content rather than considering the back-links and keywords. Relevancy will be the key factor in ages to come.

  • Robert

    I’m almost to the point where I don’t give a Rats Ass any more what bungling google does.

    • http://www.webpronews.com/author/chris-crum Chris Crum

      Is Google still one of your main sources of traffic?

      • http://www.medlawplus.com medlaw

        I can relate to the sentiment expressed Robert. Google continually tells webmasters to jump and we all respond “how hi?” The goal posts continually change requiring site changes that really don’t increase your traffic in the long run. I think what Robert is saying is that you may end up in the same place by ignoring pronouncements from Matt Cutts, et alia and just creating the best content possible (and save yourself a lot of time in the process).

      • Robert

        Main source, doesn’t matter after a 75% loss of traffic and more in sales. You really think the trickle matters ? It’s not going to cover my bills. I figure I’m out of business in 3 months.

  • Claire

    I’ve always written my content carefully. Because no matter how well you rank in Google, if your landing page is full of spam the visitors aren’t going to convert into customers.

    If that’s all Google’s change is asking. That SEO’s write content that makes sense and is relevant to the targeted keyword. Then I don’t understand why people aren’t writing rich content anyway?

    Ranking for a keyword that doesn’t suit your products and services is pointless – visitors won’t find what they’re looking for *bounce*. Likewise with having keyword spam or no decent content on your site. It’s a bad endgame for your visitors to land on.

    Mind you I’m one of those white hat SEO’s who just helps my clients sell their products.

    I only work with individual clients though. Who have a company website, with products to sell on it. I suspect affiliates will be the sites that take the biggest hit.

    No downward slide in ranking on any of my sites yet. Hopefully I won’t have any major issues from the change in algorithm.

    • http://www.pearlisland.co.uk TJ

      Hi Claire,

      It’s interesting to know you are doing SEO for other companies, and none of your clients dropped position. Can I have your business contact details?

      I have good products and good contents on my website, but the Google position has been up and down and completely out of control. Many companies had claimed that they were SEO experts, but none of them can secure my website position on Google. Now it is disappeared on Google. http://www.pearlisland.co.uk

      I really need to find a real expert on SEO!

  • http://www.brane.com.br Peter

    This is history repeating it self.

    Google improving their algorithms means what? It just means that they’re doing their job. Every year or 2 years they do something like this. And then when the whole thing passed, the SERPS are 99.813% identical to before.

    Oh well, if nobody would talk about it, it wouldn’t be that much fun, would it?

  • http://www.lots0cash.com lots0

    It’s not about SEO… It’s about adwords money.
    We all see it… the only real SEO google allows is google adwords clients… big adwords spenders even get private individual SEO help from the google adwords team..

    But the rest of us are told… no SEO is the best SEO…

    I don’t use google anymore for personal searches… no privacy and quite frankly, there are better search engines out there.

  • http://nationwidepattesting.com/ PAT Testing

    I understand Google wants to provide quality content, but why should we all waste our time changing our sites to fit in with their constant changes ?
    Even if we get it all 100 percent right today, they will still keep changing their minds and systems making us jump through more hoops.

  • http://mobile-carwash-startup.com Robert Keppel

    For all this talk of “cleaning up” the serps, I look at my competitors’ backlinks and find…WEB SPAM.

    • Rich

      Robert, I totally agree with you. I have been writing great content for 4 years. I haven’t changed a thing. I have over 4,000 pages on my site with no duplication. The most recent update has knocked me from the top spot for my major keyword. I held this position for over 3 years. The site that is now ranking ahead of me has 32 pages and each page has less than 250 words per page.

      After reviewing their back link strategy I noticed they are all coming from paid directories (I thought google was against this?) and web spam sites. Google seems to be rewarding back links heavier than well written content.

      • http://www.business-trader.com.au Peter Watson

        After reading your post Rich, I couldn’t believe what I was reading. This exact same thing happend to me! On the 6th Jan, after 3 + years holding the top positions for my main terms, I got pushed down to #7. The new #1 site is doing some nasty black hat techniques including cloaking, paid links, hidden links, keyword spamming (on a huge scale), etc, etc……I have been left scatching my head. Hopefully when the new algo kicks in things will return to normal. I eagerly await the next month or so to see what happens!

      • http://www.cbil360.com James Smith

        Hi… Rich,
        These changes are useful to your website to reach at high on SERP’s. This action taken by Google is useful to everyone to provide original and unique content.

  • http://SEOBusinessSolutions marco ferlini

    Is Google trying to make SEO irrelevant? I don’t think so. From what I gather, Google will now take the website with the best content and position it among the top results or as the top result.

    If you are engaged in White Hat SEO, then this should be a Godsend because your content writers have been writing quality, unique, fresh, related content anyway.

    The ones who should worry are those who do not employ best practices, according to the guidelines established in Yahoo/Bing and Google.

    I agree that the ones who should worry are affiliates, but that’s only if they are not providing quality, unique, fresh, related content and if they are engaging in practices that blur the line.

  • http://www.acmewriting.com K Richard Douglas

    And why shouldn’t great content be paramount? Does anyone visit a website to read bad content? Does that site visitor return? Is the playing field level if one site owner has incredible content, but lacks the SEO knowledge and another site owner practices grey hat techniques but offers little useful content? We have clients who ask us to incorporate keywords/key phrases in a natural way into written content, but how much better would that content be if it did not have to be finessed in this way? I’ve always said that if there is a “take-away” for the site visitor, the content is just right.

  • http://rs-geo.orgfree.com/ Sergey

    I in practice was convinced, that if on a site completely an original content, it is possible not to be engaged in optimisation. But on a site all the same should be present: “title” and “description”. Well if they coincide. But relevance of a content to “title” and “description” all the same needs to be made not less than 60 %.

  • Rich

    I think this would be great. The old method of judging a site by in bound links is no longer effective. Buying links, directories, posting articles with back links, blog posts with back links and the list goes on…how does any of that ever relate to a vote for your site. It equates to gaming the system. It doesn’t count for your material and it looks like Google might have figured that out as well. I welcome the change to content and site quality. As Google has been making algorithm changes I have been noticing better and better organic results on our site. I hope the trend continues and we move away for linking as a primary way to rank.

  • Rod Cook

    It is always work keeping content fresh and not step on any SEO toes in the great grand Google scheme of things. You do everything humanly possible to stay ahead of the Google monster so your site doesn’t get eaten! The great thing is that there are always at least 9 slower competitors out there trying to grab Google attention!

  • http://www.alda-architects.com Alan

    What point is there in having good content if it never ranks? There is an arrogant assumption that you can describe all sites by a succinct meta description. But a global description does not suit many sites that have wider purpose say; advice plus sales.

    Just did a search for a plumber. All the top listed sites locally are other indexing services, Yell, Local tradesmen etc etc. Is this a good result? I think not, because if I am stupid enough to click on any of them I will find that I often get non local links. Changes that demote such sites would be very welcome.

    I also think that you need an element of randomness so that a site that ranks 50th today may rank 2nd tomorrow, because what separates the alleged importance of many sites is merely key word stuffing and back links. So why not just create bands and alternate ranking? It would be a lot fairer and may encourage better content freed from over emphases on SEO?

  • http://www.designerjewelryandaccessories.com sohoaccessories

    I must be one of those sites !!

    • http://www.designerjewelryandaccessories.com sohoaccessories

      I mean having original content and not getting a ranking at all.

  • http://www.engrafito.com Fernando Camacho Lotero

    SEO is very important for a website, but content will always be the King!! Good and changing content will always attract visitors no matter the rest.

  • http://www.studioartistx..nl Alexander

    It’s not page optimization that I’m worried about as I’m in business for a while now and know how to do it well and to never ever use black hat techniques… it’s rather the links building that worries me. The fact that sites rank better with more pointing links to it, is just unfair. The most of us have no money to outsource that part of the job in 3d world countries or to buy all kind of weird ‘articles’ software that multiply links in all kind of blog pages and directories. Links system vs. website popularity is definitely something that should belong to the past. If search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing have so many employees, I think it should be far better if they keep just a few of their best to keep developing the search engines and let the rest of their army value the sites manualy regardless of amount of links pointing to them. Then and only then can sites compete on fair and healthy way. By that time, those with bigger cocks shall keep ruling the web I’m afraid and that shouldn’t be the case. If search engines say webmasters shouldn’t worry about SEO, then they should really mean it in all aspect. For now yes, I think they send mixed messages.

  • http://PersonalComputerLessons.net joel

    Keep it simple … I don’t think Google is trying to get us to play a game of ‘try to keep up with us’ or ‘can you guess what we’re thinking?’ or anything of the sort.

    I think Google just wants to provide the most accurate and appropriate search results possible … and if that means continually tweaking its algorithms, then that seems perfectly reasonable.

    There’s a reason Google’s the best at everything it does … and this is yet another example.

  • http://bungeebones.com Robert

    When SEO companies corner me to where I can’t avoid their extraordinary claims I am usually able to get them to step back by asking them where their site ranks for the search term “SEO”

  • http://www.computerhowtoguide.com Computer How To Guide

    Great move by Google! If this would eventually become a reality, blogging will be re-directed back to the right direction which is to encourage bloggers to focus more on producing great content for readers. Bloggers should spend time reading, researching and studying a particular topic and write high quality content to present it to readers instead of wasting too much time on SEO. Blogging is WRITING and UPDATING a blog, and that is supposed to be the most important job of a blogger. IMHO, blogs with great and high quality content but not doing much in SEO should be given the priority to rank higher.

    -Peter Lee

  • http://www.harendrasinghrajput.com Harendra Singh Rajput

    Yes i Agree with you we are Implementing our site as per user prospective, we are not concentrate on Top Rankings but what if other person start using SEO Activity for there own site so the person will earn hits, conversion but we are following user friendly behavior so we are on last. that’s diff if we are not doing SEO for our site… i am in 4.5 years, i always found so many new companies which are doing spamming still they are on top best companies on last no.

    so there is no solution if we are following the rules, the Google algo only understand the Rules which are preinstalled,

    The final summary is SEO Is Must if you want to Get in top or want to beat your competitors.

  • http://www.replica-sunglasses.co.uk/womens-sunglasses/ Lisa

    HI Matt Cutts,

    i don’t understand why matt or google is saying that to improve on content every now and then. They say to focus more on content. If u would like to rank in google then i really don’t think its about just content.

    Many webmasters focus on SEO link building, submissions and all types of promotions to get rank. So if google says not to concentrate more on SEO then how u guys decide on ranking ?

    Will u decide by relevancy or is it all about high quality backlink site?
    Will u favor new sites with relevant content?

    I just don’t understand about the Google algo becz it dosent make any sense, as if its about content then google has said it many times. Whats new in it?

    If google changes its algo then it will be for sure many sites would be affected which means over seo optimization ?

    So my question here is for RANKING
    1) Should i focus more on directories ?
    2) Should i focus on PR, ARTICLES, SBM for backlinks ?

    should i only put relevant content on my page and i don’t do any type link building will my site be on 1st page?

    • http://itinfoz.com Navin Kunwar

      I agree with lisa, what should we do to rank in google? writing relevant content or link building?

  • http://www.website-consultancy.com/ Website Consultancy

    The SEO do’ and don’ts by Ohye are great, this sort of information from Google is priceless and more SEO practitioners should pay attention to it.

    Which fits in with the whole article, as Joel says “keep it simple”.

  • http://www.validtips.com simu jacks samuel

    let’s wait and see what is Google going to do?

  • http://wickit.co.uk Alex Barrett

    Thanks for the article Chris though, I have to confess, the story of the boy who cried wolf comes to mind in a way. We have heard, for so long now, that Google are focussing on ranking high quality sites and pages. They are just not very good at their job! Still, after more than a decade, their search results for all but the longest keyword phrases in popular areas will bring up hundreds of high ranking low quality pages.

    The very Google Alert that brought me to this article also brought me three others, one of which was obviously a spun rewrite by some thesaurus software, another was yet another “How to do SEO” rehash from a hundred thousand other websites and the third a thoughtfully written blog by Russ Jones. For an Alert that is pretty good. Usually each such email update of what Google considers to be high quality, relevant content contains four rubbish articles for every quality one!

    While in an ideal world Relevant, Reliable, Recent and Readable will be the formula to get a decent ranking, for now Google still cares way too much about the now defunct Page Rank formula and backlinks.

    In a way I get the sense that all this persuasion to play nicely from Google is part of their policy statement (Ten Things) and a little more about aspiration than achievement!

    So for the time being, the scum and the cream both still float to the top of the search stew and it could be a while before we see a meaningful improvement. Good luck in your research Matt Cutts and your team. As Alan Turing suggested many years ago, artificial intelligence is hard!

  • http://www.seopackages.net Jennifer

    Thanks for sharing, Google is making changes in its algorithm now and then. Thus, new techniques should be used in seo. Both quality link building and quality content mattes a lot in seo.

  • http://adsmodito.com/ Philippines Free Classified Ads Online

    John is right! Google wants to give more relevant content rather than considering the back-links and keywords Etc

  • http://www.arthurspools.com Craig Holman

    As long as we are dealing with an algorithm, we are dealing with numbers. No matter how many changes, updates or tweeks they can put it, this formula has no subjectivity, it cannot judge aesthetics, it cannot choose then “worthy site” beyond whatever aspects the particular forumla takes into account. So SEO will always be based on playing to the formula.

    You want content, we do content. You want IBL’s we do IBL’s, the dog will chase the rabbit, where ever it goes

  • http://www.itrustgodonly.com John P

    I would like to see Google put good, quality content sites up that are relevant to the keywords that a person types in. I was getting tired of going through pages looking for a site that had what I was looking for so I switched to Bing and I get better results. Google will become a better SE if they would rank sites for their quality content and not backlinks.

  • http://ephedrinewheretobuy.com Mike Budd

    I would like to see that :-)

    When I see some sites ranking high with quite no content and millions of backlinks… it’s a pity and I sincerely hope it will change asap.

  • http://www.dewaldthuysamen.com Dewaldt Huysamen

    I am definitely looking more into schema.org and have already applied it where one can.

    Pagnation tags I have also added.

    Because we are in South Africa and our top SA search engine still relies on keyword tags we leave this in for our local clients.

  • http://aplawrence.com Tony Lawrence

    This morning I noticed this “we are turning off a method of link analysis that we used for several years” at http://www.webpronews.com/google-de-indexes-and-penalizes-private-blog-networks-2012-03

    I wonder what that means..

  • http://goodcontentwebsites.com Paul

    Google has always sent mixed messages about SEO. It is without a doubt ambiguous. When will they every get it right? The big question is – will they every get it right?

  • http://spidermarket.wordpress.com Jon

    Quality content has been trending for sometime. Reading about unique content is nothing unless you’ve experienced it. If the content moves you textually or visually, then thats it.
    I have seen startup businesses websites that have Kick A$% content with that was interactive go viral due to its awesomeness!

  • http://www.myeasytrade.com Jackson Odera

    I think this is the best thing that google will have done coz some sites really have good content and yet don’t rank well simply because they do not have a seach engine optimization budget with them, i think this will be fair and would encourage fair competition and equal opportunities to all provided the content within the site is authentic

  • http://swagatamindia.com Anil Goswami

    Agreed. Without links you stay no where. In a way mighty Google is admitting failure that they cannot recognize good content algorathimically. Even Google needs people to do manual reviews – so, back to networking using sites like Facebook, Linked and others for building long term sustainable relations. The more Google Analytics shows traffic coming outside of Google, more Google is going to panic. Google is a commercial organisation and while it is big and strong, internet is even bigger.

  • http://www.korinia.com Kirk Haksever

    I’m just your average website owner with a small real estate business, I have no SEO skills or knowledge skills and I don’t even know what a meta tag is – but – I’ve written all of my website text myself, the site is packed with useful, relevant information for my customers, no spamming of ‘key words’ etc, even all of the pictures on my website are unique and were taken with my own camera – so how am I rewarded for all this on google? I’m not. I apparently need to spend a small fortune on google adverts and for SEO that may or may not work depending on what the people at google decide from one month to the next! I just have to cross my fingers and hope that the following statement comes true! ”…sites with good, quality content that don’t do a lot of SEO could potentially rank just as well, or better than a bigger site with a bigger SEO budget and a lot of SEO tactics implemented”

  • http://www.pozycjonowanie-torun.net Pozycjonowanie

    Isn’t spying on your competitors’ keyword strategies a SEO technique? For me it is, tracking up what your competitors are doing on their site is a good technique and KeywordSpy can do that because KS will give you an opportunity to immediately track down your competitors and gather keywords for the promotional campaign of your online business.

  • http://www.pozycjonowanie-torun.net Pozycjonowanie

    lawmacs invites you to check out ..Blog Marketing For Money

  • http://www.pozycjonowanie-torun.net Pozycjonowanie

    Emily said: I never knew Flickr had a creative commons search! I usually look at Flickr and ask for permission. It can take a while! Thank you for this! On your other tips, I’ve got some configuring to do! Great post!

  • http://www.pozycjonowanie-torun.net Pozycjonowanie

    I’ve just updated the post with a link to an update that Chris Le over at SEER Interactive has put together that deals with the new rate limit requirements.

  • http://www.pozycjonowanie-torun.net Pozycjonowanie

    How about, tell stories people can relate to?

  • http://www.juicemydesign.com James

    It is always hard to try and get to grips with seo and the rules to follow. Especially as the rules and algorithms the search engines use to rank your site always changes.

    I guess the bottom line is just to keep track of how your site is doing and do all you can to make small changes and remember, increased ranking doesn’t happen over night.

    I have tried to create a small diagram to follow which may help: http://www.juicemydesign.com/blog/homepage-seo-dos-and-donts-for-success/

  • Uday Patel

    I have been trimming my keyword presence to a minimum but the I see sites stuffed with keywords in titles, meta and body contents and yet ranking at the top?

    Are they going to be punished in progression or do they some virtues which negates keyword stuffing.

    It seems that sites are being selectively penalized. Seo and marketing sites seem to be hit selectively. Hitting sites with hint of optimization in spite of having good or honest contents seems to be illogical. Website promotion will stay…the paradigm may change.

  • http://www.captaincyberzone.com Cap’n Cyberzone

    You Have To Do A Better Job POLICING/DELETING The Spam!!!!