Just do a web search for “Is SEO Dead” and you will find pages upon pages of articles about the supposed “death” of SEO. So is SEO really dead? Of course not. The rules have just changed. Whether you are new or experienced with SEO (if you’re new to it, see the explanation below, then come back and see what the big fuss is about), you’ll see that it can be hard to keep up with all the trends concerning SEO.
Over the last 10 years, search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo have consistently tuned and re-tuned their “algorithm” so that you can easily find what you are looking for. Google, the king of all search engines, sets the standard by which SEO experts “dial-in” their websites so that the Google search engine may find them.
In the days of old, there were many tricks that could be used to increase the effectiveness of SEO. But Google has been playing a cat-and-mouse game with many of these “experts” to the point that the search engine is actually ignoring some websites. So how is SEO still alive? Google search has given great preference to quality content.
Essentially, videos and high-quality articles stand out as SEO magnets. When it comes to LOCAL SEO that helps you get your business found, it’s all relative to the extent of your reviews and review site listings that matter. MOZ conducted an outstanding study on local search and concluded that at least 50% of LOCAL search is influenced by LOCAL SEO.
Their study is not for the faint of heart, so we’ll try to boil it down to the following SIX FACTORS:
Let’s explain each one:
Firstly, it’s important to have your business listed on lots of review sites. We call that the BREADTH of your listings. The more places your business is listed, the better. But we suggest that you have listings on at least 10 review sites that matter (such as Google, Yelp, Yahoo, CitySearch, YellowPages, etc.).
Next, it’s important that your listings be CONSISTENT with your business Name, Address and Phone Number (also known as a “NAP”). Since most of the review sites also display your web address, make sure that it’s the correct address as well.
That’s the easy part, the next four are a bit harder but can have a huge impact on your SEO. They are based on getting reviews on those review sites that matter most.
The reviews should be RECENT. The older the reviews, the less weight they will carry with the search engine.
The reviews should lean also toward the positive. Negative reviews will rank lower. The reviews don’t have to be perfect, but they should be balanced. In fact, the MOZ study suggests that balanced reviews (rather than perfect “5 stars” or “all negative”) carry more weight from an SEO perspective.
The text of the reviews should mention the name of the business and the services and/or products provided by that business. A restaurant that sells “steak” would benefit if the reviews had the word “steak” in them. (But beware of *keyword stuffing.)
Lastly, each review site should have several reviews on them. One or two reviews on a review site will have little impact on SEO. ReviewInc suggests at least 10 reviews on each review site, with at least one of those in the last 30 days.
Subscribers to ReviewInc’s service can access their SEO Impact analyzer which is updated daily based on a business’s reviews. Here is a sample chart provided by the ReviewInc’s service:
Whether you are an existing ReviewInc subscriber or want to know more, just call us and we’ll be happy to discuss how we can help.
Search Engine Optimization
SEO stands for “search engine optimization.” It is the process of getting traffic from the “free,” “organic,” “editorial” or “natural” listings on search engines. Local SEO is a specialized kind of online marketing that increases visibility for businesses interested in ranking for geographically-related keywords. A large part of Local SEO involves ranking in the Local algorithms, as well as ranking well in the organic results for Local keywords.
Keyword stuffing is considered to be an unethical search engine optimization (SEO) technique, which leads to banning a website from major search engines either temporarily or permanently. Keyword stuffing occurs when a web page is loaded with keywords in the meta tags or in the content of a web page. The repetition of words in meta tags may explain why many search engines no longer use these tags.