Rather than overreact to rankings alone and scream the sky is falling, for the past 15 months we have been quietly testing new strategies that can withstand the likes of Panda (a quality control classifier) and Penguin (a thematic link sniffing filter) that demotes websites with excessive inbound anchor text i.e. “unnatural” link signals.
Keep in mind suspicious or contrived link signals could imply a wide variety of possibilities, such as:
- Unnatural link velocity (building or losing links too fast).
- Excessive anchor text, i.e. a high percentage of the same or similar anchor-text.
- Links from mixed-fruit / atypical websites that lack genuine/natural signals such as (1) supporting / thematic inbound links (2) traffic and engagement or (3) social signals (which is why many generic link networks failed to get past Penguin).
It’s no secret that two Google algorithm changes (Penguin and Panda) nearly eradicated SEO as we knew it, however,one thing is certain about SEO, the fact that it’s always adapting or in a state of flux.
Adaptation in this instance implies (a) understanding the entire keyword climate for all educational or promotional key phrases that consumers are using while progressing through the sales cycle (b) using that language strategically in titles, on page content, in your promotions (content, images and links) and (c) in the social graph as hooks that all drive traffic back to your branded promotional properties or your primary website. Expanding this process systemically facilitates perpetual conversions.
Is SEO Dead As We Know It?
Have the rules changed? Absolutely! Is SEO dead? In its previous embodiment, to a large extent, yes! So, the bottom line is (1) what now? And (2) how do I broadcast my brand and my message instead of merely churning mediocre content or fiddling with low quality backlinks?
Watch the videos below and learn how to quickly create your own thematically relevant “personal broadcast network” using WordPress, DWS and our plugin amply named “The Silo Blog Builder”. Afterwards, make sure to watch the webinar (further down the page) for an in depth overview of the new DWS 4.0 online promotion paradigm.
Put simply, if your primary website lacks traffic or sales, then no amount of outdated SEO (circa. the Google Penguin update April 2012) will make a difference. It’s not just about rankings; it’s about how scalable your traffic sources are and how adept you are in extracting relevant traffic on demand.
Spoiler Alert Regarding Blog Networks!!!
Do mixed-fruit blog networks still work? No! or at least until a filter weeds them out. However, theme relevant networks still pass ranking factor (and can serve as a branded broadcast beacon for extended promotions), which means a link from site B to site A must be theme relevant (have the same topic) and use the appropriate anchor text along with related synonyms (a.k.a. the DNA Braid) to avoid overoptimization filters or being smacked / deindexed.
If you are creating a beacon/site, it also helps to create stellar content (worthy of social media) and syndicate that content (to build links to your links) and ensure the longevity of your “broadcast channel”.
The new paradigm suggests to look past rankings and think of each site or promotional property as a beacon, broadcasting YOU (your brand), All the Time, Right NOW!
It’s Not About Links, It’s About Promotions!
In a competitive online environment, using obsolete legacy metrics (such as search engine rankings and only using one website to compete) is defunct as a viable strategy.
The imperative metrics to consider are (1) how scalable are your personal broadcast networks? and (2) how theme relevant and extensive are your syndication sequences for generating traffic which is the only metric that matters.
Learn how to create a proper promotional campaign, including:
- which keywords to use
- how much those keywords are worth to your business
- how long it will take to get ranked
- how to use website silo architecture to build your website
- which content , synonyms and type of promotions you need to drive traffic
- knowing which social media sites, RSS directories, video sites or press release
sources to use and having a project management suite to coordinate your team.
Take The Next Step: Watch the DWS 4.0 Webinar!
Sure, on page SEO is still important, however quality content and engagement is a metric you simply can’t afford to overlook, and about that “off page SEO thing”, yeah, over optimization is real, but just keep in mind, now, it’s not just about links, it’s about promotions.
Allow me to explain!
People Hemmed up in Panda and Penguin Algorithms Typically:
- Got a bit too greedy with off page SEO (link metrics) and churned out as much content to build links as possible (without thinking of quality).As a result, Google struck back with their quality control algorithms which comprised stricter filters, classifiers and relevance signals, (i.e. social signals, engagement time, bounce rate, thematic relevance of the link graph for the target and refering site) and 200 other fancy smancy words that translate to “if your website sucks, then good luck finding it in their SERPs”).
- People hemmed up in the Panda / Penguin Algo had a tendency to get a bit too lose with quality control on their promotional content and found out that regardless of the traffic source – you MUST have something useful to contribute.Otherwise, your content will simply be skimmed over for something useful and ignored vs. starting with a solid foundation of engaging contnent and promotional content to begin with.
- Websites drastically afftected by Panda or Penguin often relied too heavily on one metric (such as links) because it was working and thus became complacent in regard to seeking viable alternatives or finding new ways to reach their ideal consumer.
Remember, Google is merely one traffic source; a very popular one, but not every consumer uses or purchases exclusively through their link/traffic/ sales funnel. This means, there are a myriad of alternate traffic funnels that you can leverage systematically to reach your audience contextually, socially or otherwise.
A consumer’s impulse to purchase is either active or dormant, yet if that dormant spark of desire is enlivened through curiosity, a clever headline, utility or impulse, then conversion is merely a few clicks away. Conversions (making a sale) is not exclusive to Google, in fact, conversions can occur from a multitude of sources.
For example, a conversion could occur from:
- playing a game online and being lured by an enticing banner
- during social interactions on Facebook (or other social platforms) from banners or contextual links
being lured from teaser “check this out” social media content or images in their various clever iterations
- from reading articles and clicking the contextual links (after social proof is established).
This process, setting up the sales funnel should not be left to happenstance alone. In fact, when we map this phase of a campaign for a new client, we use what Russell Wright brilliantly coined as the IS-DNA. The letter “I” in “IS-DNA” stands for Invention/Innovation/Industry and the “S” stands for “Solution”.
When we speak of “DNA” in our material we simply mean “components of” or “building blocks of”.
So “IS-DNA” translates into the “building blocks” of your innovation or invention that you have provided to your industry.
The purpose of the IS-DNA process is to align your market’s FAQs (frequently asked questions) with your market’s SAQ’s (should ask questions) by drilling down and getting to “the questions behind the questions”, or “the pain behind the questions” which will be used later to create highly converting articles and videos using the PAM (painkiller article method).
Remember that we are giving you a highly profitable stack-able business process, and the IS-DNA may very well be the most important part of the entire process, because it is the BASE of your PLMM (Perpetual Lead Magnet Machine) System and Pyramid. Get this wrong and you may end up using the wrong language to talk to the wrong market!
The IS-DNA set’s the stage by creating a matrix of market questions in order to help you select the most effective language that can reach your target market because you (and your team) will truly understand the problems and pains that have been solved for them by your product or service (innovation or invention).
Once you have mapped out “the pain in the market”, you can tactfully craft “pain killers” (PDF Download) in your content, videos, social media and/or promotions to transcend traffic-dependency (such as Google) to devour your entire market. To thrive, you’ll have to escape the grasp of one simple traffic funnel to flourish.
Whenever you rely solely on a “for profit business”, that business (potentially) has the ability to endanger your bottom line. Just as the “eggs in one basket” adage comes to mind, the question is, are you still in Google’s pocket? Or have you considered a long-term contingent strategy diverse enough to flourish (if Google or your most lucrative traffic source simply stopped providing traffic?).
To avoid putting your business at risk you must hedge your primary property with branded social media and third-party websites (just in case). Consider Google’s last algorithm change Penguin. Many who were unprepared suffered, as their once profitable websites spigot of traffic got shut off, forcing them to find alternatives – rather than diverisfying and being prepared (as if Google never existed) in the first place.
In order to do that, you must change the way you think, which means instead of thinking about backlinks and on page optimization, replace on page SEO with “genuinely engaging content” and replace backlinks with the idea of “broadcasts” and “promotions” and broadcasting your brand (across hundreds of traffic-bearing sources) using a stackable / repeatable process that YOU control.
Remember, backlinks are merely a byproduct of promotions if you don’t have anything worthy of sending traffic to, then visitors will simply bounce in search of better content; so, there is no need to put the cart before the horse.
After seeing the image above, did you want to buy something? Ok, perhaps not this time right? It’s obvious that the image/message and timing doesn’t coinside as a strong call to action.
The point remains that regardless of the website a consumer is frequenting, conversion is merely a matter of enlivening synchronicity (between their needs and desires to your perfect solution via a product or service) to facilitate an impulse to purchase.
This fact was often overlooked entirely from SEO practitioners prior to Penguin who focused solely on fabricating lackluster content and flinging it in a thousand directions in an attempt to get links. Content farms thrived, comment spam, forum links and network sites were the rave.
The truth is, most SEO practioners missed the boat from taking short cuts with their primary and promotional content. The notion that people would actually consume or be persuaded by fodder (lackluster content) and purchase is ridiculous. Don’t make the same mistake…tap the web, not just Google as a source of revenue.
Why Has Our Blog Been So Quiet for 3 Months?
In case you have wondered why the 3 month silence on the SEO Design Solutions Blog, On April 8th, I survived a horrific motorcycle crash avoiding a minivan that took my lane while I was riding my Ducati 996 at 90 MPH. It resulted in tumbling twisting and sliding nearly 900 feet on the Freeway (like a bowling ball).
Although the bike is totalled, I have multiple broken bones and some bumps and bruises (which are all healing now), thankfully, I survived with no brain injury or spinal damage.
However, during the last 90 days, we have continued to make updates to SEO Ultimate “The Real All-In One SEO Plugin” and The WP Ultimate Theme – our sleek, flexible, WordPress Theme Framework (designed to give existing WordPress frameworks a run for their money).
Also, later this month our lead developer John Lamansky plans to release an updated video for all the SEO Ultimate features from version .5 to present (which includes dozens of tips, updates and tweaks).
Shortly thereafter, we will release our beta version of WP Ultimate for suggestions and tweaks for the final version. Until then, thank you for your patience and welcome to the new paradigm and it’s herald and summary – it’s not about links, it’s about promotions.