Reputation Changer: Content Remains King for Google
During a panel at the 2012 SXSW conference, Google engineer Matt Cutts revealed that the search engine giant would begin to penalize those who used SEO or search engine optimization a little too much. This contradicts a statement made in 2009 by the company that they did not penalize those who use SEO extensively. For a company such as Reputation Changer, Google’s new stance solidifies one key thing: having quality content for a client is far more important than optimization.
Reputation Changer: Better Content, Better Results
Google and other search engines have come under fire for allowing websites that offer low-quality information or irrelevant information. Their first attack on low quality sites came in 2011, when they introduced Panda. In a nutshell, Google’s Panda removed poor results from the rankings.
Google’s more recent attack on overly-optimized sites is also a continuation of this initial change with Panda. The company claims that they want to “level the playing field,” which only seems fair. So what can companies such as Reputation Change do to keep the playing field level? Continue to produce quality content.
Better content is identified by the following characteristics:
- It answers the question. When a person uses Google to conduct a search, more often than not they are looking for an answer to a question. Content that is weak never actually gets around to providing the answer to a question. Instead, it just teases the reader.
- It puts the reader first. This is related to answering the question. If an article or blog post isn’t created to serve a reader, it won’t do well on Google, now or in the future. Online reputation management is about image control, and part of image control is being able to give readers and potential customers the information they need or want.
- It’s up to date. As far as Reputation Changer sees it, great content is updated regularly. Regularly updated content also gets a boost in search results.
- Everything about it is relevant. Low quality content can be easily identified because in some part, it doesn’t make sense. There may be a word inserted into a sentence that clearly doesn’t belong there. A phrase may be hyperlinked to a website that has no clear connection to the rest of the page.
- It doesn’t necessarily rely on search engines. Knowing how to rank on Google is important, but sharing content in other ways, such as through social media profiles, is also important and a sign of quality.
Reputation Changer: Is This the End For SEO?
While Google is may be changing its approach, that does not mean that it is the end for SEO or online reputation management firm Reputation Changer (and others like it). As the Reputation Changer experts recognize, companies should always try to get their pages on search engines. However, they just should not do so at the expense of quality. Reputation Changer also notes that Google’s new approach is probably another step toward “humanizing” the search engine algorithms.