Some days it seems everyone is talking about the same thing and today, that topic seems to be SEO post-Panda update. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, let me explain SEO (Search Engine Optimization) in plain English (since I’m not an SEO expert, just a sophisticated user).
Think about how you do a search on Google or Bing — you type in some terms (in SEO lingo called keywords) and results appear. You scan the results and select links that meet your needs. Commonly, you’ll select links from the top of the 1st page of search results. Hence, as a business, you want your links as near the top of the search results as possible, because you’re likely to get more visitors the higher your rank.
Search Engine Optimization is a set of tools to help you do just that — matching people who need stuff with businesses who have stuff.
You can read more about SEO for Beginners in a recent post from Let’s Blog for Money or follow the infographic.
In its never-ending quest to provide more relevant search results, Google constantly tweaks the algorithm used to generate results. The most recent tweak, called Panda, had a serious negative effect on a number of websites (although mine were unaffected).
So, how should your website change for SEO post-panda?
For most websites, the answer is: you don’t have to. If you’ve provided high quality, consistent content and engaged your market through social media, your search results should be optimized already.
However, if you only operate a static site — a standard e-commerce site — your SEO post-Panda probably went down. That’s because Google increasingly serves up sites with dynamic content — like a blog. Hence, you should consider adding a blog to your website. If you need help, Let’s Blog for Money helps by providing step-by-step instructions, tools, and tips.
If your site uses content scraped (stolen or borrowed) from other sites, you likely saw a negative impact to SEO post-Panda. High quality content is what Google looks for, so create original content that reflects your expertise or helps visitors.
Eliminate short, poor quality posts from your site and refrain from creating new ones. If you can’t think about something to blog — don’t. Quality is better than quantity.
If your site uses black hat SEO – tactics banned or discouraged by Google — you will see increasing penalties on your search engine results.
If you have questions regarding what Google considers “high quality content” here is your answer — straight from the head of search rankings at Google.
What Does the Future Hold for SEO Post-Panda?
According to Google, Panda is one of over 500 changes in the algorithm expected this year. And more changes will come in future years as Google tries to retain it’s dominance against challengers like Bing and Facebook.
Of course, a recent anti-trust probe considered by the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) related to Google’s business practices may impact future changes to the algorithm (and your SEO strategy). The basis for the probe is broad, but covers issues of discrimination through application of the Google algorithm. Should the FTC determine Google’s algorithm doesn’t treat businesses equitably or that advertising practices impact search results, Google might face stiff penalties include fines and/or forced changes to the algorithm.