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Google’s Ever-Changing SEO Concepts

SEO is a familiar concept in marketing. Traditionally, a main focus on SEO is link building. That’s a rule many people still subscribe to today. However, how many times do you use that tactic, only to have no noticeable difference in your traffic? Well, Google wasn’t having it.

No one wants to make SEO too easy. Google stays on top of this by continually updating and adjusting how they measure site performance. Getting a good rank means SEO becomes a full time job. You can no longer focus on link building and expect good results. Google’s ranking system considers well over 200 different aspects of a website and only about 5% of all that link building will result in real traffic.

Here’s where it gets fun. Everyone has access to social media, even when they don’t have access to a computer, so it makes sense to work it in. You can still use the link building that you know and love, but it’s important to keep in mind how easy it can be to manipulate.

Social Signals

There’s been a great deal of speculation regarding this topic. Most people assumed that Google is keeping track of Likes and Followers on Facebook and Twitter. However, that does not appear to be the case. In reality, these social media sites are still tracked like regular pages. At least, that’s Google’s official take on it.

This may be the case, which is certainly a change from 2010, when Google publicized that they did use social signals in an effort to track business profiles. One of the main concerns seems to be how quickly online profiles change. As such, Google may not be monitoring your social signal directly, but it does have another impact.

Traffic

One thing social signals do well is increase the traffic to your page. This is a huge reason to have a Facebook or Twitter. People see you on their feed and travel to your actual site.

Result? The increase in traffic bumps up your page rank on Google. Traditional link building doesn’t really accomplish this. They’re there, they lead to your site, but most people don’t take any notice. Your accounts on social media are a different story.

If you have a Facebook account set up for, say, your forklift business, you’re actually killing two birds with one stone. People that visit your page are much more likely to check out your actual website and as such, become customers.

Authorship

Authorship is an idea that came along with Google+ and it has made a big impact. Essentially, authorship is basically Google working to prevent hackers, scammers and plagiarists online. If you have a Google+ account and you post something linked back to it, Google automatically inserts your picture and a small profile. It also helps to link to your other accounts, such as Twitter.

Doing this helps to establish your name online. It takes readers straight to your website, blog or other social media account. Additionally, because Google+ is password protected, it makes it more difficult for someone to plagiarize your work or to attempt to damage your online presence.

In today’s competitive world, becoming known as a reliable and trustworthy expert in your field is vital to establishing yourself. However, as of late 2013, only about 3.5% of companies were using authorship. This means that the field is wide open and underutilized.

Always keep in mind that what’s true today in SEO and social media may not be true tomorrow. Google doesn’t want to tell us all of their secrets for page rankings, but that doesn’t mean we won’t try and figure it out.

Scott + PageScott Huntington is a writer, blogger, and social media expert. He lives in Pennsylvania and with his wife and son. Follow Scott at @SMHuntington or check out his blogblogspike.com

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