The phrase “content is king” has long been an SEO mantra and it’s true. Google loves content. Not just any old content. It loves engaging, fresh content on a regular basis. This doesn’t mean you have to churn out articles on a daily basis just for the sake of it, but if you’ve got something interesting to tell the world about your products, or something that may be connected to them, get it online.
Keyword research has always been an important part of SEO and it remains the case. Even with so much emphasis on content, getting the keyword research right is vital. In fact, it’s probably even more important now as you need to avoid filling your site with irrelevant content. Many people often make the mistake of targeting keywords that are too broad. Long tail keywords account for around 70% of searches and have a high conversion rate, and the best thing about them is you can target them naturally with your on-site content, rather than shoe-horning them into paragraphs here and there. The new Hummingbird update is supposedly better equipped to handle long tail searches, making keyword research even more valuable. Once you know what people are searching for, you’ll know what to base your content around.
Doing Things the Right Way
This really is the golden rule of SEO but it seems to become more important with every Google algorithm update. Avoid so-called “black hat” SEO techniques at all costs. It used to be easy to trick Google and get your site to the top of the rankings but those days are long gone and if you get caught, the penalties are so severe, your site may never recover.
What does this mean? Firstly, no hidden content. That means no hiding things in comment tags within the code, which means they won’t be seen by the user and no hiding text from view by making it the same colour as the background. If you’re still using meta keywords, you’re wasting your time, as most search engines don’t use them to determine rankings anymore and if you’re stuffing the tag full of keywords, it may raise alarm bells and you get penalised. Also, given it’s easy to view a site’s source code and therefore any meta keywords, why would you want to give away what keywords you are targeting to your competitors so easily?
Whilst meta keywords are a no-no, you shouldn’t ignore your site’s meta description as this is what will appear on a results page and is your chance to tell new visitors in a concise manner what they’re going to get if they click the link.