Posted on October 29, 2014
In the spirit of Halloween I wanted to take this opportunity to suggest a creepy content experiment idea that may help your overall SEO strategies. When Hummingbird rolled out earlier this year a lot of websites with poor content took an axe to the face and, to this day, remain buried waiting for some SEO juice to reanimate them like zombies from a George A. Romero film.
Let’s face it, not all SEO professionals are writers. In fact, most can barely write an author biography for their company’s blog spot. As a result, rather than learn how to write and truly think about the way search behavior has evolved over time, some will try old SEO techniques out of desperation that simply wind up unleashing the zombies onto their website to sup upon any remnants of a brain that may be left. In addition to offering an experimental content idea this article will also address the SEO techniques that will butcher your rankings and feed those zombies with the brains of Google penalties.
What We Can Learn from Dr. Frankenstein
We all know that within the sinister walls of some gothic backdrop Dr. Frankenstein experimented until he was able to reanimate something that was dead and cold. If your SEO is the semblance of an icy corpse than it’s time to re-think your content strategy. If you ever hope to see your site spark with web juice while you proudly shout, “IT’S ALIVE” then start with the basics and think about how people are searching the Internet. Here is a hint: mobile users are increasing and in 2013 more than 55 percent of all Internet searches were performed on smartphones. So think about how people perform searches on mobile devices. There are two primary methods: “what is the best French restaurant in Chicago” and “best French restaurant in Chicago”. Considering that 70 percent of your SEO is content, think about a textual strategy that answers the questions your public is asking—if you nail it, your site will spark to life just like the iconic monster. You can even take advantage of Google Analytics to learn what search terms people use to find your site, the length of time they stay on your pages, and where people leave the site. This data will let you know where to put your content, what your H1 key phrase should be, and which pages need to be peppered with more quality content. Just remember to structure your content in a format that asks important questions and answers them while considering key phrase placement. Build a few different structures and test each one over the course of 3 weeks while tracking your progress onAuthority Labs and before you know it you will find the magic content recipe that ranks your site.
If zombies have already infiltrated your SEO company then they have likely already started sucking the brains out of your websites. If you are relying on portal pages you are merely opening a portal for the zombies to come and unleash their worse. Portal pages deliberately manipulate the search engine rankings because they rely on a bulk of keywords to serve as bait for the search spiders. This used to be a favorite method of SEOs but Google got wise and now roughly 97 percent of all sites with these pages get penalized and fall prey to the zombies. If you have any of these pages have them permanently removed! This will help your site withstand that zombie attack just a little bit more.
Keyword stuffing is another sure way to ring the dinner bell for the zombies to come and feed off your website’s brains. When Google launched its Hummingbird update the importance of high quality content was emphasized, and this meant that repetitive keywords sent a message to the Google quality score causing the content to look less than flattering to the SERPS. One way to avoid falling prey to the search zombies is to use the SEO Book keyword density checker and shoot for a density of five percent, including any keywords in your meta text.
Make your SEO a Graveyard Smash!
Google keeps getting wiser and the tricks that worked last year seldom work in 2014. If you want to make your website a true graveyard smash then focus on your content, test different formats, and try to develop a Q&A style composition that appeases mobile search language. Finally, don’t look for short cuts. In the movies the people who survive zombie attacks are the resourceful ones who study the terrain, examine the walking dead for their weaknesses, and exploit them with the weapons amassed from careful thought and analysis. Be clever, produce good content, stay away from black hat SEO tactics, and you will be rewarded with SEO results that will be a true Halloween grave yard smash!