Will you ever be visible to your prospects on Google?
It has never been easy being visible on the web. After all, over 90% of users never leave page one when they are conducting a search. You might be competing with thousands of sites to reach that coveted page one site and it just got a lot more complex for internet marketing professionals.
Google have substantially changed the way they rank websites this year in what has been dubbed the Panda Update. On the whole I believe that this is a good thing and now quality and relevance of content have never been more important. Anyone involved in internet marketing needs to understand what this means to them, and also learn the new strategies for optimizing their site.
It had a big impact and the ripples are still being felt 7 months after it was implemented. Google intended the update to reduce rankings for low-quality sites that are often called content farms. These include article directories and big content sites with massive numbers of links. These sites would often have more links that the most important authority sites like CNN, BBC, WebMD and Time for example.
In an interview with Wired.com Google’s SEO Maestro, Matt Cutts, explained a lot of the thinking behind Panda. Clearly trust played a big role, and Google employed manual reviewers to visit sites and ask these questions – is this an authority site and would I feel comfortable handing over my credit card details to them?They also looked at the number of ads and the quality of the content. Google want quality content, not the thin material that is just published for search rankings. Yes, there is an art and a science to writing great content but quality and relevance are always the main criteria.
So what should you do to adapt to these changes. Here are five steps you can take straight away
1 Write longer, higher quality and more relevant content. Over 1000 word long articles are now recommended
2 Reduce the number of Ads on your site and make them less intrusive
3 Design your home page and inner pages for the visitor not for advertisers
4 Increase the Page load Speed
5 Reduce the bounce rate on your site and increase the time spent on site for your visitors (install Google Analytics to check this if you have not already)
Make your content more readable and user friendly and you should be fine.
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