Technologies are improvising, so are the Search Engines. Every year, a number of updates are happening with them to provide the best of the information to searchers. If search engines algorithms are updating, then Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques are required to be updated to keep your websites in synchronization with latest updates.
Google's multiple popular updates like Google's Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird in earlier years have already put the Seo world in dangling position. Again, spring 2015 also left a significant mark for SEO optimization with Mobilegeddon update.
Search engines optimization is an ever-changing world.
To sum up all the updates, the focus of Search Engines is averting to present relevant qualitative information along with the effective visualizations. In earlier years, Marketers and SEO Agencies managed to get results for their clients with keywords and link-building oriented processes in obsessive and redundant manner, now they are rethinking their ways to replace earlier old SEO methodologies with upcoming updates.
Here, I'm presenting you all SEO elements which are to be relooked or left behind for their effectiveness. This will help you in not wasting a single moment with SEO ways that simply don't matter in 2016.
"If it's on the web. Google knows it."
You need not to submit your newly created branded to google to get it noticed for SEO. Even if you do submit your websites then it is not guaranteed that google will crawl to find and index them. And, this is clearly reflected as per Matt Cutts in Lesson 1.3 of How Search Works -
"When you do a Google search, you aren’t actually searching the web. You’re searching Google’s index of the web, or at least as much of it as we can find. We do this with software programs called spiders.
Spiders start by fetching a few web pages, then they follow the links on those pages and
fetch the pages they point to; and follow all the links on those pages, and fetch the pages they link to, and so on, until we’ve indexed a pretty big chunk of the web; many billions
of pages stored on thousands of machines.”
In earlier years, building backlinks as many as possible without considering the backlink domains was one of the key ways for efficient SEO. Though, as per Searchmetrics, it is still securing ranking in top 5 most important rankings factors for seo, but with some changes.
"Link Building is not a numbers game anymore."
With Around Penguin 2.0 update (released in 2013), it has become important to have quality backlinks, instead of bombarding of backlinks on every other place in an irrelevant manner. Sometimes, less number of quality links can be beneficial if you try to work upon how quality backlinks can be created. You should try to figure out relevant and diverse sources that link to relevant pages of your website.
You would have noticed many website urls which start with either "http://" or "https://". The extra 's' tells that website is secured with SSL secured. SSL stands for secure socket later.
"SSL signifies the seriousness and trustworthiness of website platform before Search Engines"
According to SSL.com - "SSL is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the web server and browser remain private.”
In 2014, Google included HTTPS as a signal in their ranking alogorithms. The reason behind could be understood that securing a website using SSL signifies the seriousness and trustworthiness of platform which leads to expect quality content from it, and finding quality content is the biggest interest factor for search engines.
Firstly, it is needed to be clarified that whether you are expecting more visitors or good ranking? Of course, good ranking does not matter if it can't fetch you more visitors, or technically can't generate a good "clickthrough rate". Hence, Ranking should not be the ultimate goal when seo is discussed.
According to top ranking factors of 2015, "clickthrough rate" has secured the #1 position.
I'm sure that you will find many marketers promising you to get you to #1 on Google. But, they would have never mentioned what for. Instead of overwhelmed by ranking, try to be useful. Your readers will ultimately bring about more consumer because they will share your stuff. Though it can be understood that searcher prefers top search results, especially top 3 listings. However, it’s also been shown that on following pages, being listed toward the top of the page shows similar click behavior. And with search results now being appended with rich text/snippets, results that appear below the top-three search results are getting much higher clickthrough rates. So, you need to avoid the misconception that being on top will get good click through rate.
The underlining reasons for not generating good traffic on being top are -
- Keyword Strategy is not correct because result is on top for unrelated keywords.
- Meta Tags of results are not eye catching or appealing.
Meta descriptions are HTML attributes that briefly define the contents of website pages and can be seen on Google's search engine results pages (SERPs) as preview snippets.
Meta descriptions (and meta keywords) have no effect on search rankings
As earlier mentioned, meta tags help you to separate from other top search results in SERP which depends on how appealing and convincing they are about the content on related web pages. So, they are still very important to be considered. But Google announced, all the way back in 2009, that meta descriptions (and meta keywords) have no effect on search rankings.
In earlier days of SEO, Shoving as many keywords onto a page as physically possible had long been the bane of SEO white hats everywhere. This practice was used to called Keyword Stuffing. In those years, one could easily manipulate a page’s ranking on Google’s SERP with keyword stuffing.
Keyword Stuffing degraded the quality of content on every other web pages as everyone was trying to uplift ranks of their website with this manipulative method. Search engines worked around it and Keyword Stuffing is now considered as a strictly black-hat tactic. And, if it is done then Google's advanced algorithms are more likely to panelized those websites.
Google’s own Matt Cutts warned webmasters about SEO keyword stuffing and over optimization at SXSW last week, saying:
"We are trying to level the playing field a bit. All those people doing, for lack of a better word, over optimization or overly SEO – versus those making great content and a great site. We are trying to make GoogleBot smarter, make our relevance better, and we are also looking for those who abuse it, like too many keywords on a page, or exchange way too many links or go well beyond what you normally expect. We have several engineers on my team working on this right now."
Hence, your content should be written to inform users, not the search engines. Now, search engines have become stunningly intelligible and going farther on the same lines with each and every coming update. Hence, Keywords do not need to be repeated exactly throughout web page content. If you want to user keywords then it should be done in ways which make sense to your audience.
Homepage of your website is the main gate for your business. It's the page which should reflect about your business in best manner, and should not be concerned with any kind of SEO tactics.
The best manner to build your homepage could be as simple as like Dropbox (with just a login support), or Flipkart. The point is that your audience should be able to get a good understanding of your platform.
Google has been keeping on moving to create a better experience to its users so that they not only get quality content but also amazing user experience and website engagement. Google has it's own self interest that searchers should get delighted with its services so that they keep on coming back to it, and be regular Google user.
Quality content and amazing user experience are key factors for sound SEO.
Google Algorithms can sense the best user experience providing websites with page load time, bounce rate, time on page, mobile responsiveness, page views per visit, and how far a person scrolls down the page.
SEO is of two type - on-page SEO, and off-page SEO. Image optimization comes under on-page SEO. Search engines can not see images on websites but they understand that images play a important role making any content of web page qualitative. So, they have their own way to reference search images using alt text and file name. This is where image optimization is needed. Images should be optimized with text relevant to page content which look meaningful. Google also recommends providing descriptive titles and captions for your images, so consider adding those when relevant.
The image types Google can index include BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG, WebP, and SVG, so be sure to only use these image file types on your website to make impossible for Google to index them. Name your image files something that is indicative of what the image is itself, rather than something like IMG4389420.jpg. Yes, keywords matter here!