Marketers the world over collectively heave a big sigh every time Google makes a change on its search algorithms. It happened with the previous Panda and Penguin releases and as marketers we always need to be prepared for the new. The Internet has evolved and some SEO techniques have definitely become obsolete. As search engines and social media platforms constantly strive to improve their user experience, they do not care about the feelings of digital marketers who may have spent years “optimizing”. Persisting with obsolete SEO techniques will not only be a waste of time and resources but may also lead to negative impact on your rankings. Here’s a list of SEO techniques that you need to retire now!
1. Keyword Stuffing
There was a time when mindlessly stuffing the content with keywords helped you rank high in search rankings. The search engine bots registered keywords and were not sophisticated enough to understand anything else. But that phase of innocence is now gone and the focus is on the quality of the content. In fact by stuffing too many keywords you risk getting pulled up. More importantly, the key reason you want to rank on the search engine is so that your consumers can find you and you can generate some business leads. With poorly scattered keywords and no storylines, this is far less likely to happen. People will bounce off your site instead leading to zero impact.
2. Keyword Meta Tags
Google does not look at the keyword meta tags. They do not play a part in deciding your ranking in the general search engine. So do not delude yourself by stuffing the meta descriptions with keywords. Write them anyway to include a useful summary of the page for the benefit of the real users. Google may use them while displaying your search results. This may increase your click through rates. So, remember keep them short and concise optimized for clicks, not SEO bots.
3. Irrelevant Backlinks
Back linking just about anything will not help you. Quality matters far more. There were clever ways to hoodwink the search engines by creating network of websites that created back links among themselves without making it apparent that they are interrelated. However, search engines are now smarter enough to determine such collusive link farms and networks. So you can forget about creating a bunch of free blogs and secondary websites to link to each other and enhance your rankings- they won’t.
4. Duplicate Content
A lot of websites that did not invest in good content writing often used to grab content from other sites and literally feed off them. Sometimes even sites with duplicate content ended up ranking higher than the original one but it is no longer the case. Search engines are now better equipped to detect duplicate content and also to figure out who the original publisher is. So, forget benefitting from it, you may end up getting penalized if you publish duplicate content on your website.
The idea of cloaking came up when some marketers tried to outsmart the search engines as well as real readers. They wrote poor quality, keyword stuffed content for search engines but they hid it from the human eye with clever tricks. For example they choose white coloured fonts on white background to make them invisible for the readers but they could be detected by the search engines. However, placing random keywords in large numbers do not work anyway and if cloaking is detected by the search engine you will be heavily penalized again. In short, focus on quality rather than quantity for best results.
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