People generally think of Pandas as warm, cute fuzzy animals – call it National Geographic propaganda☺.
It takes a company like Google to remind you that Panda’s are, in fact, bears.
With teeth. And claws. And up to 400 lbs. of steel bear-muscle.
After Google’s Panda Update, there were many search engine optimization techniques that either took a big hit, or a small one, leaving webmasters frustrated or annoyed – even the ones that tended to do things by the book.
With the potency of blog commenting slowly-but-surely dwindling, due to the countermeasures against the SPAM that started dominating the comments sections of highly-regarded websites, and directory submissions costing an arm-and-a-leg just to be considered by the good ones, the practice of SEO may very well soon fall out of the reach of the average aspiring webmaster, seeking to make a living from home by blogging about the stuff that interests her, or choosing lucrative keywords and optimizing for them.
However; this may not necessarily be true, as long as Google continues to respect and accept article marketing; which, by all means, seems to have survived the latest swipe of the bear claw. Consider the problems and techniques you should concern yourself with when engaging in website promotion
SEO Ranking Factors post-Google Update
- Blog commenting – can be a bit tough to find good ones; but that can depend on the SEO tool you use. Granted, tools aren’t necessary; but they do save loads of time in many cases. Nofollow tags suck; but are probably necessary. You’ll understand when you start getting Viagra and Cialis comments on your blog about mountain biking ☻. Nofollow tends to discourage that crap.
- Update: Google’s recent updates, from Farmer to the Pandas and now Penguin, have slowly been relegating the importance of blog commenting to the back-burner. Nonetheless, it is still quite important for ranking; blog commenting now just has a greater emphasis on both quality and quantity, in that order. Construct a program of website promotion that keeps up a consistent blog commenting approach; for example, a simple suggestion would be to comment usefully on 20 blogs every time you post, for starters.
- Directory submissions – used to be all the rage; now, not so much. The precursors to the Google Panda update pretty much deep-sixed their relevance, what with the huge amounts of mostly useless, unranked directories that cropped up. From experience, there were some companies that had literally hundreds of directories and offered them to you for a fee, posing as different owners. While there are still a lot of them worth submitting to, too many simply cost too much for a single link. Predictably, Google doesn’t even rate them that highly, since paid directories don’t pick up your content and publish it just because it’s good! They don’t necessarily foster a good web community…but ones like Yahoo’s Directory still matter a lot. Just break out the check book. Every year.
- Update: Directory submissions are not that powerful, unless you have insane numbers of them – and they won’t really work at all if not used in conjunction with all the other methods of website promotion, such as article marketing, guest blogging, content marketing, etc. The newest updates have pretty much solidified this fact in stone.
- Article Marketing – tried and true; but only for the upper-tier directories. If you do it right, article marketing can easily take the place of what blog commenting used to be, building enough links to your content to make it eventually reach “runaway-reaction” stage, as I like to call it. You just need to do diligent, consistent work in the beginning, building backlinks to your main blog as well as your best articles in prominent directories; eventually, it will grow visible enough to start spreading like wildfire.
- Update: Article marketing, as can be expected, has escaped the recent updates with only minor wounds. What they updates have really done is attack huge content marketing farms/firms, by degrading them and causing them to remove their countless shoddy articles and poorly-spun content. But good/great articles are just as strong as they’ve always been, as long as they’re not duplicate content. As good as article marketing is, however, it has a very related cousin technique that is not only more powerful, but may be the most powerful current form of back-linking after Google’s Penguin update:
- Guest Blogging. It actually makes sense when you think about, in light of the progression of link-building techniques that benefits Google advertisers, which is the ultimate goal of Google (the company’s market capitalization is over $200 billion; 98% of which comes from advertisers). They want good, informative and engaging content for their potential consumers; and article marketing was a great way to do that, until people started submitting nearly unreadable articles to article directories. Guest blogging, on the other hand, is inherently more secure and in line with Google’s goals, because people are much more reluctant to allow sub-par work to be posted on their domain; think about it – you wouldn’t let a smelly, dirty dog into your own home, would you? Probably not. So guest blogging is really just article marketing, but with an incentive to keep the highest quality in mind.
Article marketing and guest blogging have now come to the fore as the best methods of free (or relatively inexpensive) website promotion.
Take the time to research high PageRank (although PageRank hasn’t been updated in awhile) blogs that have good content, and peruse their site looking for ideas on what you can authoritatively contribute, before emailing the webmaster with an article proposal/blog post.
Use this technique in conjunction with article marketing to the best 20 or so article directories that you can find; even if you employ article distribution services and other mass article marketing services, it is important to keep in mind that they can definitely work, you just have to make sure your articles are just as good as if you’d written them for your very own blog. Remember, you want people to be engaged; only then can you successfully inform them.
For a robust program of link building, check out my Top Link Building Methods page – you’ll be armed with everything you need to start your own SEO adventure and be ranking high up in the search results in just a handful of months – it worked for me!
Good luck, and please feel free to comment below – leave you keywords or name in the ‘Name’ section, and website link in the ‘Website’ section – NO links in the comment box itself. Thanks!!!
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