Google announced their latest algorithm update this week and which has sent some marketers into a panic. Previously algorithm updates have completely changed the rules of search engine marketing, and have even been called “the death of SEO”. While the main goal of Panda 4.0 was to remove thin spammy sites, some major sites were hit hard by the changes as well. E-Bay was one of the biggest sites that took a hit from the algorithm change, due to thin content and gateway URLs that provided no value. The update will affect close to 8% of all search queries, which is the biggest impact from algorithm changes since 2011. Many websites may not see any change from Panda 4.0, but it is better to be safe than sorry. By following simple SEO principles, you can help to keep your site from sinking to the bottom of search.
Lesson 1: Do Your Homework
Google gives love to websites that answers viewers questions. By having rich well developed content, Google will see your website as a resource, and it will move up in the rankings. Previous approaches of over-optimizing content by keyword stuffing can be detrimental to your website. If your website is packing in content with no value to the viewer, is will be considered spam, and knocked out of the rankings. It is important to keep in mind that Google is getting smarter by the day, and its ability to differentiate good content from thin spammy content will only improve.
Lesson 2: No Copying
One big focus of Panda 4.0 is eliminating websites with duplicate content. Google views this as cheating, and not providing value to viewers. If you have articles in multiple places on your website, or duplicate pages now is the time to get rid of them. The new update also does not like the content being published on multiple websites. Sharing content as a resource is good, but copy/pasting on multiple sites to take over a specific query is not. Make sure each of your pages have unique title tags, content, and meta descriptions.
Lesson 3: Follow The Rules
The Panda update looks for websites that respect a proper SEO structure, meaning the pages are user friendly, and contain content that easy to digest. First off, this means having a proper word count (the ideal is around 600 characters). Content that is short, looks as if it is thrown up as filler, while longer content appears to be copy/pasted from other sources. H1, H2, and H3 titles still matter, as they give the viewer immediate information about what questions the article answers. If internal or external links are included, they should provide the viewer relevant information on the topic at hand.
At EmoryDay we have content writers and SEO specialists that can help optimize your website and increase conversions. We have a results driven approach and can work with any budget. Contact us today to see how we can help build your brand.