Just when you thought that your SEO rankings were seeing the light of the day, Google announced its two new updates – Penguin and Panda. Panda update is just a revision of the last one. The penguin update can still whack hard. Future “Penguin update” will perhaps give more jolts in the coming months. Frankly, the target that Google is aiming is quality in all respects. From content to the keywords used for SEO, overuse of SEO marketing techniques to the extent of spamming, has now come under a scanner. But more than anything else, this is a nevertheless a good news for the web users.
These updates have severely hit several websites while there still are those who have not been affected yet. Readying your site for the revised and updated algorithm from Google seems quite a task if you have done all that these updates need to be reversed. The fact that these updates have underlined is that a website is not for the search engine crawlers, it is for the readers instead. Anything which reduces the stickiness of the website for the readers will automatically reduce its rankings with Google.
Here are a few tips for approaching the task of updating your websites for Penguin – Panda update:
1. Carry out a comprehensive and detailed SEO audit for your website. The audit needs to cover all the aspects of all the pages of the website, on page as well as off page optimisation. Right from duplicate content to caching, speed, performance, broken links, keywords stuffing, metatitles, low quality backlinks. Look at your Google Analytics report to understand any drops in traffic, which can provide you clues to the reasons and type of issues your website may be facing which is leading to a dip in traffic.
2. Carry out an in-depth link audit. Identifying the broken links, irrelevant backlinks, irrelevant links can greatly affect your rankings with the new Penguin update being enforced by Google. Focus on contextual links rather than sponsored links. Think of everything from a reader’s point of view and arrange your linkbacks accordingly. It is better to have a few relevant and quality link backs than several irrelevant ones of poor quality which can only pull the site down.
3. Focus on content quality. Make it interesting for the reader to read on and explore. The better the stickiness of the content, more the visitors, lesser the bounce rate and better will be your SEO rankings. In the end, as mentioned above, it all boils down to how your reader views your site.
4. Take it slow. Carry out each task and check the impact it has on your SEO ranking. Make modifications based on the changes in rankings and the results reflected in Google Analytics. Google crawlers take time to crawl a website for updations and changes. It is hence a long drawn process, and hence it is all the more crucial that it is done correctly from the word go.
Remember, the focus should not be to cheat Google’s algorithm by identifying a bug / loophole in it. If that is done, another Google update will only leave you scouting for more such loopholes. Identify a partner / team that can help you build a site which is appreciated by your readers. Google will automatically follow the suite.