Any business or webmaster with more than a month or two of experience will by now be painfully aware of 2014’s SEO revolution. Search engine algorithm changes are nothing new of course, but what’s been unique this year so far is both the severity and frequency of the updates rolled out. This of course refers more to Google than the other search engines still doing the rounds – the folks at Mountain View have apparently decided that 2014 is the year to step up their offensive on poor quality sites like never before.
Of course, there will always be those that argue all Google’s updates are pure marketing ploys to force businesses to buy more sponsored advertising space, but regardless of how right or wrong they are, survival means playing by the rules. In years gone by, using SEO to get by basically meant looking at the bits and pieces the search engine spiders were looking for and blasting your site with them top-to-bottom. From keywords to backlinks to filler by the bucket-load, it worked for a while and then it didn’t…the same approach now will earn you a one-way ticket to an early grave.
Last year’s SEO will see any business become an unfortunate statistic to Google’s newly-waged war on spam, which of course begs the question of how exactly can a proactive site owner or business protect itself?
Spammer Set to Suffer
Technically speaking Google’s latest, largest and most complicated algorithm update in its history is also perhaps the easiest to understand. Cutting all the technical talk out of the equation, what’s basically happened is a change to the way Google indexes sites in such a way as to identify any and all spam tactics and make sure those behind them are punished. Spam used to mean blatantly obvious attempts to fool search engines – today it means any content or site attributes that haven’t been put in place 100% for the benefit of readers. For example, even going above the 1% mark with keywords these days will earn nothing but discredit from Google and Co, as there’s really no denying you’re only putting those words in to get noticed.
Google has always been out to eliminate spam from its rankings – the only difference in 2014 being the way in which the definition of what constitutes spam has been changed quite radically.
Back to Basics
In terms of how to best compensate for and cope with the changes, it’s really nothing more difficult that going back to basics. Before Google’s power grew to such dangerous levels, a website’s success was determined by its quality, what it had to offer and how well it served its visitors. This is inherently what Google has been striving for all along with its indexation system and the latest algorithm update has brought things closer to how they used to be than ever before.
Or in other words, the only way to satisfy Google as of 2014 is to do exactly what all websites and online businesses should have been doing all along – making concerted efforts to make the site as flawless as possible for its visitors, with indexation crawlers never coming into the equation.