The wider world of SEO and online marketing appears to still be in “absolute turmoil” as a result of Google’s Penguin update, says Alistair Harris, content manager at the U.K. web marketing company ClickThrough Marketing. The change, which redefined how Google ranks sites during a user search, “knocked some very reputable and white hat websites straight off the rankings,” Harris says.
Many of those punished have since redesigned and updated their websites, as well as checking to see that every page was correctly optimized and every back link checked carefully.
Some have reported improved search rankings as a result of their retooling, while others have not rejuvenated their previous positioning. “As a consequence, there currently seems to be two very different schools of thought among industry leaders about how next to proceed: sites should either follow Google’s guidelines to every last letter or forget about Google and concentrate on other channels,” notes Harris.
For those who think that the first option is better, he adds, Google has provided some very specific Webmaster Guidelines. “The most valuable points to be extracted from the list should be fairly standard for anyone who endeavors to operate in an ethical, organic manner — but it is easy to overlook something which was done quite legitimately but that Google could well view in a different light,” cautions Harris.
He offers the following tips to avoid potential problems:
Don’t use hidden links and text: “Most people will know that hiding links and text to fool the search engines is a very old, Black Hat style trick: what many do not realize is that their website color scheme can make it appear that they are doing just that,” says Harris. “Primarily, this can happen in cases where there is no clear distinction between the background color of the page and the font color.”
Don’t use doorway pages: Doorway pages are almost identical mass-produced pages, containing poor-quality content that is usually keyword stuffed with the intention of getting them ranked for a particular keyword or phrase, rather than offering any relevant information to the user. “Again, this practice is severely penalized by Google,” Harris warns.
Don’t use irrelevant keywords: “One thing that is definitely wrong in Google’s eyes is using keywords that have absolutely no relevance to the content of the page on which they can be found,” says Harris. “The simple solution is to never do this.”
Source: ClickThrough Marketing
Posted June 26th, 2012 under Intellectual Property Marketing