Brynna Baldauf of Vertical Measures answers “What Old SEO Tricks May Be Hurting You?”
Hi. My name is Brynna, and I’m here to talk to you today about the top three old SEO tricks that are now hurting you.
The first one is reciprocal linking and linking exchanges. When you do this, it basically tells Google, or other search engines, that you’re actively trying to pursue linking and actively trying to game the system of appearing higher in the search engines. This is something you don’t want to do, because they can easily recognize it. They can go to the other sites and see that your link is there as well.
So, what you should do, instead, is try to get natural links. Why is it bad if Google recognizes it? Because they can ultimately penalize you, which ultimately reduces your traffic and drops your rankings.
One way that you can go about going to get these natural links is trying to produce excellent content, or meeting people in real life and networking and asking, in real life, for a link, or going to a link building company and asking for help, because they have the expertise to get your content placed in appropriate ways.
The other thing you don’t want to do is keyword stuff your content or domain name. It used to be a great idea to put in as much of the density of keywords as you could. So if you had your exact match keyword appear as many times as possible, it would raise you in the rankings. Now, it’s going to hurt you a lot more than it’s going to help you. What you should try to do, instead, is write natural content that flows. Before, when you were writing content that stuffed in as many keywords as possible, it became difficult for people to read it, because it would just say keyword, other word, keyword, other word, and that doesn’t read well. From that, you not only lost traffic, but now you’re losing rankings.
What you should do, instead, is create an excellent piece of content and don’t even think about SEO. This way you’re writing concisely, clearly. You can look it over afterwards and put in things for SEO. This way it makes it not only more readable, but easily searchable for the search engines, because it looks natural and organic.
The last and final thing that’s now hurting you is non-varied or unnatural anchor text. When you used to want to be linked to, it would be a specific word or keywords, maybe two words, something like “internet marketing.” But now, if that happens over and over and over again, it looks clear that you are pursuing link building or actively trying to game the system again in Google. This looks unnatural, because no one would naturally link to you like that.
How is a blogger going to link to you when they find you in the real world on their own? They’re going to say one of four things. They’re going to say either your company name and link to you through that. They’re going to say “click here for more information,” or another cloud keyword term. They’re going to put a few words together, such as “I found this interesting,” or “this is a great example of.” Or they’re going to say something unrelated that you’re not actually trying to rank for. And this is just part of the process.
You have to remember with all of this that the rising tide rises the ships as well. So even though they’re giving you just a link and it may not be your exact keywords, it’s still a link and it’s still valuable.
When you’re out there pursuing links or putting links into your content to be spread throughout the Internet, you have to remember that you have to make it look natural. Otherwise, Google is going to find out, and ultimately you’re going to be penalized and drop your rankings. This is a big part of the recent updates. And so, it might not have happened yet, but going on into the future, you need to be very careful about your anchor text.
The three things that you need to remember are:
- Don’t do reciprocal links or link exchanges anymore.
- Don’t keyword stuff your content. Make it look natural.
- And also, vary your anchor text.
This is very important going forward.
Thank you. Have a great day.