The SEO game is changing with increasing rapidity. Old tactics are being marginalized and dumped faster than ever before. What was once considered a legitimate “white-hat” tactic can be discredited and disregarded, seemingly overnight, at the flick of a proverbial switch; or in our case at the launch of an algorithm update.
META Keyword stuffing, “invisible” white text on a white background, thousands upon thousands of directory listings or blogroll links with exact matching anchor text. All of these were legitimate SEO tactics before they were retired by Google as part of a legitimate ranking signal. Now such tactics will not help in the least, and in a worst case scenario can get your site penalized or even de-indexed.
A plethora of newer SEO tactics have also been dealt the demise of a vanquishing call-out from Google. Guest posting, advertising links, link-wheels and blog networks are now all far less effective than previously. As per the previous tactics, overuse of any of these now “black-hat” methods can also get your site and rankings into trouble.
Google have blurred the lines between what is “white-hat” and what is “black-hat” with well over 50 shades of grey. Most of us in the SEO game are aware of the never-ending updates to the algorithm, and it is a constant struggle to stay ahead of the curve, limit any risk of being caught-out, and ensure long-lasting and positive ranking results for our clients.
While the game is constantly changing, it is now more important than ever to not rely heavily on any single marketing tactic to make an optimized back-link profile look as natural (and Google-proof) as possible. Any reliance on any single SEO strategy is going to leave an obvious pattern, and that might leave your brand’s online presence in jeopardy.
Safe SEO – Not Just for 2015, but for Life
While we don’t know what Google are going to do next year, next month or even next week, we can take steps to offset risk. An intelligent link strategy for 2015 should include a wide variety of links including those from:
- Popular and Relevant Directories
- Suppliers, Retailers, and other Business Associates
- Guest Posts on Relevant Websites
- Social Media Accounts
- PDF/Image links (if applicable)
- News/Community Articles
- Sponsorship links
You can read more about basic link building in our article on how to optimize your rankings on a $0 a month budget. Stay in touch with us via Facebook or Google Plus for all the latest in SEO and Digital Marketing ideas, news and industry updates over the coming months.