Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Google Changes SEO Algorithms

So you may have heard recently (I believe it was first announced at SXSW) that Google is changing its SEO algorithms (again). Apparently, the question was asked how smaller businesses could compete with large companies on SEO - and what happens when someone searches and the whole first page is optimized content instead of what they were looking for?

The short answer is that Google is moving towards a more semantic search. This means that Google is trying to get at the meaning behind the words that people search with - how the meaning changes when certain words are next to each other. For instance, "New York" is different from a search of just "new" and "york." In other words, semantic search is about the intent, rather than just the keywords.

What this means for SEO is that over-optimized pages will basically be penalized, moving down the search results page in favor of legitimate content. So what can you do about it? As Matt Cutts, head of Google's search spam team, said, "Make a compelling site. Make a site that's useful. Make a site that's interesting. Make a site that's relevant to people's interests...We're always trying to best approximate if a user lands on a page if they are going to be annoyed...All of the changes we make are designed to approximate, if a user lands on your page, just how happy they are going to be with what they're going to get."

So if you were planning on using SEO in your social media campaign, you might want to take a second look at your methods.

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