SEO, or search engine optimization has been a much discussed and debated topic. IMO, I think it will continue that way, for as long as there are search engines and most importantly when users continue to make use of them. There are studies all over the place, where results indicate that when someone is looking for something, they start generally by “searching for whatever it is” online. SEO is not dead as many would like you to believe, but it is constantly changing and as new factors come into play, others go. In addition, SEO is just a piece of the puzzle, now included in a much larger scale called “inbound marketing” (more on that later).
Best SEO Practices For 2012
As I mentioned before, the best SEO Practices have not really changed that much, as the most important ranking factors pretty much remained unchanged. At its basics, you need to know that there are only two essential elements for good SEO, on-page and off-page. On-page SEO are those that you as a publisher/webmaster can control directly, while off-page SEO essentially relies on user behavior, social engagements, visitors, and other publishers, although there are some cases where you too can control part of it.
Now and understandably, you might be a complete newbie to this whole SEO thing. If that is the case, I strongly suggests you to read the following, before anything else. While these material may have been published for a while now (not entirely – new updates included), they all provide a lot of information that are valuable. It will definitely introduce you to the basic concepts of content optimization for search engines and a bit more :).
Google Webmaster Academy (new update: June 2012)
Another Step To Reward High Quality Sites (new update: GWT Official Blog April 24, 2012)
Google’s SEO Starter Guide
Google’s SEO Report Card
Best SEO Tips and Practices for 2011
Search Engine Land’s Guide To SEO
How to Fix On-Page SEO Problems using Bing Webmaster Tools (new upated June 2012)
On-Page SEO Ranking Factors and Important Elements
Essentially, you will need to address the following – Content, Code and Site Architecture. Let’s put aside the need for quality content as that is the only one that is a given.
Best On-Page SEO Practices For…
Quality content is really what you should aim for, as this is what it takes to enhance or improve users experience. I won’t be discussing posting frequency as it depends a lot on your topic or niche and how often you can generate good content. If you ask me, it is way better to post a great article 2 –3 times a week than shooting for useless and low quality daily content. That won’t cut it. You should know however that search engines, and in particular Google, is now looking for “fresh” content. Obviously, if you are talking about something that is “hot” or trending , the more updated the information is, the better. Otherwise, find a frequency that suits you best and stick to it.
Is freshness an important signal for all sites? (Update 10/2012)
To clarify a bit what QDF or Query that Desrves Freshness is all about, Matt has published this video that porvides some helpful tips and advice about “content fresshness”. Note to what he mentions about “evergreen” content.
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