In the world of Search Engine Optimization, there are good techniques and bad. Bad techniques will hurt your presence significantly.
What does NOT work?
- Building thousands of low-quality links.
- Commenting on web pages and other sites.
- Mass link submission tools.
- Article spinners.
- Buying links from link farms.
BASICALLY, you want to avoid all LOW-QUALITY LINKS.
What if it’s working?? My rankings are improving!!
Sometimes these techniques work, but at the end of the day, “gaming the system” will only come back to bite you in the…well, you-know-where. Search Engine robots / crawlers figure out what people are doing to cheat the system, and eventually will plug that hole, and your rankings will ultimately be dropped. And if you do something REALLY naughty, search engines have no qualms taking you out of their search results for good.
How do I learn what’s good SEO and what’s bad SEO?
First, you can do research. A great resource is The Beginner’s Guide to SEO. And there are endless resources. But with many things, SEO changes often, so when reading articles about tips and best practices, be sure to check the publication date. If it’s dated 2011, it might be a little dated.
Second, if you don’t feel like doing research, my brief explanation on how to follow the rules is simply this…
If you are doing it for the robots, you are probably doing it WRONG.
If you are doing it for the convenience of the human visitor, you are probably doing it RIGHT.
Are you writing for the robots or for your target audience? Are you selecting your keyword phrases base on what robots will rank or based on what your target audience will search for? Are you including cross-linking and external link resources for robots or for the convenience of your target audience? Are you filling out all those local listing profiles for the robots or so your target audience has a better chance of finding you? These are just a few items to help burn this idea into your pattern of thinking.
Here are three free tools you will want to start using to help improve your online presence:
- Google Analytics | Track website traffic and trends.
- Google Webmaster Tools | Learn how Search Engines view your website.
- Google Keyword Tool | Keyword research targeting using Adwords.
When setting up Webmaster Tools, you have to define which version of your URL you want to be tracked, with the www. or without the www., and then you have to set that in your account under Site Settings. If you do not, Google may view your website as having duplicate content, which alone will hurt your website’s ranking. This one simple thing – amazing, isn’t it? This is a great reminder that duplicate content is a big SEO no-no.
Thank you for joining me on this fun lesson on what NOT to do! Looking for more advice about what to do? Below are some references you may enjoy: