With at least 13 updates to its algorithms since April's Penguin update targeted sites that violate Google's webmaster guidelines, it's clear the search engine giant means business when it comes to promoting quality sites while demoting those relying on black hat SEO techniques.
And while those changes have had many webmasters fuming, it's really a case of Google finally putting its algorithms where its mouth is and enforcing guidelines it has long asked everyone to follow.
Here then is the new old face of SEO, the essentials Google itself says will help it best find, index, and rank your site along with practices to steer clear of. And if you don't already have an account, set one up at Google's Webmaster Tools to take advantage of free tools that help you submit your site, track links and traffic, creates site maps and access lots of other useful information.
To see your site the way search engine spiders do, Google recommends reviewing it with a text browser like Lynx.
Since they make the enclosed text bigger, heading tags give important visual clues to readers to identify important items on a web page. They also help clue search engines into what is most important on the page as well. Use heading tags much the same way you would if creating an outline of a page, with greater or lesser emphasis as warranted on key points.
Use them sparingly and make sure the words you use helps better define the page's structure.
Create a site map
Make sure your site map links to the important parts of your site and then submit it using Google Webmaster Tools.
But if a URL is relatively short and contains words relevant to your products or services, it provides users and search engines more information about a page's content than a long and complex URL It's good to remember, too, that URLs appear as a part of Google's search results and the clearer and more descriptive, the better.
When all is said and done, backlinks to your site are still one of the biggest factors in how it will be ranked. And when it comes to links, it's still a case of not who you know but who knows you.
At a 40% rate, that means 3 out of every 5 links should not be an exact match to avoid Google's ire. Many professionals say 30% or less is even better.
A marketer selling little red wagons, for instance, would be inclined to use a link such as "Learn more about little red wagons" whereas the average person creating such a link would likely say something like, "To learn more about little red wagons, click here".
While Google's quality guidelines are filled with more "don'ts" than "dos," ignoring them is one of the surest ways to have your site demoted.
Of course, you should strive to minimize duplicate content on your own site, paying attention to boilerplate repetition of information like that found in footers.
Copyright © . All Rights Reserved