Why SEO Will Soon Become A Waste Of Time And Money
Google has recently written a post Why Data Matters where they explain how their algorithm has changed over the years.
Here’s the first main point of that story:
On the academic side, the National Science Foundation started a “Digital Library Project” which made grants to several universities. Two Stanford grad students in computer science named Larry Page and Sergey Brin worked on this project. Their insight was to recognize that existing search algorithms could be dramatically improved by using the special linking structure of web documents. Thus PageRank was born.
Where we are now with SEO
a) ON-page SEO: Pagerank + keyword in title
From my own experiments and experience, I know that pagerank is still a very healthy factor in rankings.
Actually pagerank + keyword in title are the most effective things you can do on-page (of course if you have some pagerank regardless of the anchor text of the incoming links) to rank for a certain keyword.
Here’s an experiment I did on my tennis blog www.tennisthoughts.com:
It’s a pagerank 3 site with very few incoming links including the keyword tennis tips.
Feel free to run a test on Backlinkwatch and see what kind of anchor text is typically pointing to the domain…
I’ve included the keyword tennis tips in the title of the page and there are just a 2 tennis tips keywords typically on the homepage. One is linking to the tennis tips category and one to the tennis tips page on my main tennis website.
Rankings in Google for tennis tips (with 55 daily searches according to Wordtracker): #4!
b) Off-page SEO – anchor text of the incoming link
The most popular example is of course “click here”.
Type that in Google and see where that takes you…
Yes, Adobe Reader. Why? Because there are thousands of links pointing to the domain with the anchor text Click here (to download Adobe Reader).
There is not a single word Click here on that page except “clicking”. Do some scouting to find it…
c) On-page + off-page combo
Yes, this is currently the most powerful combo to rank high on Google:
high pagerank + keyword in title + keyword (variations) in the anchor text of the links pointing to your page
Where SEO is going
From the same article Why Data Matters…
“Over the years, Google has continued to invest in making search better. Our information retrieval experts have added more than 200 additional signals to the algorithms that determine the relevance of websites to a user’s query.”
What else does Google track? Well, I am not an SEO expert but here are some things that come to mind:
- how long are people on the website
- how long are people on the page
- where do they go from there
- are there any videos, images and links to authority sites from a certain page
- is the text written in expert language for that topic (LSI algorithm comes to mind)
- and at least 195 more…
What does this tell us?
Well, if you are want to keep it up with Google’s algorithm you are going to have to artificially work on hundreds of factors where most of them are out of your control.
You cannot control the behavior of visitors on your page although you can try to influence that.
What is a much more productive investment of your time is to just keep it real and write what you know.
Share your expertise and passion and you will naturally and automatically take care of hundreds of factors that Google incorporated in their algorithm.
So where are we going?
It seems like the SEO will come down to just a few minor things to take care of: include your main keyword in the title and a few times on the page and just write!
The rest will take care of itself and you’ll save a lot of money on hiring SEO experts… 😉