Content marketing is the leading strategy for online business owners. However, with Google algorithms changing the landscape of SEO, the rules for content marketers keep changing.
The reason for the changes is because marketers are using techniques that fall outside Google guidelines and subsequently manipulate search results. Search engines then have to bring in new rules to prevent low quality sites from ranking highly.
If you do try to manipulate search engine results you should expect a Google penalty at some point. The sophisticated Penguin algorithm has become very adept at identifying irregular patterns of SEO activity.
Therefore, in order to run a successful content marketing campaign, avoid these four practices.
Inbound links from low quality sites
When the owner of a third party website directs an inbound link to your website, it is an indication that your site is worth visiting. This indicator is favoured by search engines who will rank your site higher.
Because inbound links score well, SEO agencies began posting articles on third party sites. The owners of third party sites saw pound signs and started charging for inbound links back to commercial sites.
Google got wise to this practice and released Penguin to prevent webmasters manipulating search results. Some SEO companies continue to use a strategy that cannot be detected, but the net is tightening.
As a result of bad practices, guest posting has been given a bad reputation which is a shame considering the benefits it has, i.e raising brand awareness, positioning yourself as an expert and attracting organic traffic.
Inbound links from low quality sites should be avoided, but that does not mean you should ignore guest posting altogether. Find a reputable online magazine that has an editor from whom you will get a no=follow link. This way you can build a reputable online profile which will be acknowledged by search engines.
Quantity Over Quality
Search engines have put the focus on quality content rather than quantity. If your online business enables you to post quality and quantity on a daily basis, by all means continue to publish as much as possible. However, if you have limited things to say about your product, posting content twice a week is a waste of time.
Search engines class quality as “fresh, unique” content. If you are therefore repeating the same message every week, your content will not be considered fresh or unique.
Now search engine crawlers have semantic software that can understand the context of content, they are better equipped to determine which websites are producing quality content as opposed to regurgitated messages.
The solution is to offer different formats of content such as images, statistical graphs and videos among others rather than standard written content.
The number of internet users accessing the web using a mobile device is on the rise and will be the majority number of users over the next few years. Therefore, ignore mobile content at your peril.
The key with mobile content is to keep it bite-sized and accessible. This requires image-based content or written content in small easy-to-digest paragraphs.
When creating content, imagine how it will look on a 4-inch screen. Once you have this in mind, it is easier to create mobile-orientated content.
Poor writing technique
Writing is a skill. If you do not have the ability to communicate your ideas in an understandable way, writing your own content is not advised. If visitors to your site are confused by what you have written, or if the wording is poor, they will not hang around.
The standard of content you publish on your website reflects you as a business. If your content writing does not sound professional, it gives readers the impression that your business is not professional.
It is possible to generate a lot of success for your online business with a good content marketing strategy, but if you do not execute your plan to fall in with the demands of search engines and readers, do not expect any success.