Well, traditional-off page-gray hat-build 1000 links-SEO is dead, for sure. Having said that, on page SEO is still the boss. Obviously, because it involves implementing quality content on your website, seeding relevant keywords (seeding, not stuffing), properly interlinking your website for a smooth user experience and taking care of the hygiene HTML (geeky stuff).
So, after the subsequent Panda, Penguin, Hummingbird and another 14 or so un-named updates in the year 2013 alone, what do I really do to prove myself as the good boy in the big bad spammy world?
Here are the top tips for good SEO in 2014:
1. Close your eyes, gather all the activities you usually do as your SEO strategy, think aloud – “am I spamming someone with any of these methods?” If yes, stop it now.
2. No more unnecessary social bookmarks. Build a community instead on these sites, create a following, bring them on social media by connecting your accounts and improve your social signals to rank higher organically.
3. No more Article Marketing. Article Marketing is long ousted from the SEO zone. It’s just a place for cruel people to build desperate links.
4. No more irrelevant forum participations. Participate in forums to which you can add value. Create a respect for yourself and have people trust your links. Earn traffic, don’t force it.
5. No immaterial directory links. Directories don’t add any value unless they are highly niche specific.
6. Do guest blogging with the intent of developing relationships and not just building links. Look for blogs which do have a viewership. More the likes, upvotes, shares for your article, better the social signals for your links, better rankings, awesome organic traffic.
7. Start strongly believing in word of mouth marketing. 80% people believe what their friends say about a product than the product makers. Develop case studies, have them freely downloadable from your website, ask for feedback and react!
8. Engage influencers. People would rather believe someone they already trust blindly, than you trying to justify a million times, the pros of your product.
9. Build integrated campaigns. SEO cannot win alone. Prepare a campaign (could be offline), shoot an email, promote on social media, build links for it, run paid ads, etc. Don’t leave any stone unturned. You need visibility. Get it.
10. Research. Learn about Hummingbird and other updates which affect search results and improvise your strategies. Search keywords related to your niche or the ones you wish to rank for and look at what websites turn up. Try replicating the same.
It’s evident, why they say SEO is dead. I’d quote it this way, SEO isn’t dead, it’s more human now. Online PR is the new SEO strategy. Build relationships, not just links.
Hope you find the arguments reasonable. If not, why? Share your views in the comments below.