Run The Trap: Mastering SEO in 2017

digital marketing 1725340 1920

digital marketing 1725340 1920

On every corner of the globe, individuals, organizations and communities are gathering in digital spaces in profound, new ways. They are meeting, gathering and sharing. They are offering reflections on the things they care about and the lives they aspire to. The world is becoming a much more cohesive place as high speed internet is becoming more and more the accepted norm. Connection is driving the social revolution and creating immense opportunities for the businesses and brands which are able to seize the moment, extend their reach and meet their audiences where they are.

Social media is changing the world as we know it. Every day, people around the world, are utilizing the advanced modern telecommunications infrastructure and the power of their smart phones, tablets and computers to create a new landscape of connection, insight and meaning. Today, social media doesn’t refer to a single platform, tool or app but instead refers to a vast global constellation of connected products, services and opportunities. In essence, social media is a new paradigm of experience which is bringing people closer to the things they love. This is great for all the citizens of the world and it might even be even better for all the global businesses seeking to reach them.

Social media is driving a revolution in the business world which is as useful for small startup endeavors as it is for the largest of enterprise level corporations. All around the world, companies are learning that by connecting with social media meaningfully, they are better able to meet, understand and influence the behaviors of their customers. By creating high quality content, brands are able to tell their stories and the people that enjoy it are able to learn more about the things that are meaningful to them.

In this way, social media is built on reciprocity. That is, it opens a channel between businesses and their target audiences. Both groups receive tangible and intangible benefits from interacting meaningfully with social media content. The absolute best data around this behavior illustrates a very conclusive point: social media marketing campaigns, when wielded effectively, can boost sales, engagement and reputation in clear and increasingly measurable ways which offer clear advantages over other traditional marketing and advertising approaches.The rules of search engine optimization (SEO) are constantly changing.

If you are someone who believes that by creating “amazing content” and backlinks your web presence will instantly rise in the search rankings, you aren’t wrong, but there is so much more that you could be considering.

On the one hand, the formula of content + backlinks continues to be a reliable standard and yet on the other, what defines high quality content continues to expand in 2017 and because of the constantly evolving nature of Google’s algorithms, there are many emerging tactics which can allow you to more effectively link your content and engage your readers.

If you are interested in mastering SEO in 2017, perhaps it’s time to reinvestigate your strategy and refine your skills. Read on to take your internet mastery from the little league to the all-star game!

Duplicate Content

SEO amateurs are often horribly terrified of the notion of producing duplicate content. Their fears are not unfounded but the architecture of the internet is constantly evolving and today you just might be able to get away with more duplication than you were initially lead to believe.

What is important to consider however still relates to the notion of producing “amazing content” vs producing “formulaic content”.

“Amazing content” adds values to your website. It informs your readers and adds authority to your site. “Formulaic content” is purposefully manipulative. Consistently producing and linking “amazing content” will help you rise in the rankings while attempting to rely on “formulaic content” runs the risk of being penalized by Google.

While the difference between these two abstract categories of content is flimsy at best, at the end of the day, it comes down to quality vs. quantity.

Design and UX

One of the most effective ways to ensure that you are producing high value content even if it is based on duplicated material is to focus more keenly on elements such as design. Even very minor additions such as adding relevant pictures and videos can make another big difference.

To take things even further, consider the addition of user interface (UX) boosters such as “clickable table of contents menus” and “plentiful outbound links which open new windows”. These will  vastly improve the amount of time people spend navigating through your web pages and this in turn helps to add value to your content and raise your platform in global search rankings.

You may feel that recycling your best content is not the best way to attract new interest or to assist your search rankings. This really couldn’t be further from the truth and that is why it is absolutely a best practice to reinvigorate your best and most successful pieces of content every few months.

What was successful in the past, is likely to be influential again and besides that, your readers, both new and old are far more likely to spend time digging into new material then sifting through your older stuff. To address this concern, constantly update your best older articles, blog posts and other pieces of content. As you do this, you create new data points which only make your older pages that much more attractive to Google and it’s rankings.

On-Site SEO

One vastly underlooked element of search engine optimization relates to the speed of your website. The quicker and more efficiently your pages load, the more favorable they will be viewed by search engines. Do not try to skimp on web hosting and CDN. Going with top of the line providers helps you to earn top of the line results. Additionally, the more mobile friendly your platform is, the nicer Google will play with it.

To find out how mobile friendly your site is, consider using tools such as GTmetrix and Google’s PageSpeed Insights tools. Finally, when it comes to SSL, it is important to know that Google has changed the way non-https websites are handled by the Chrome browser.

What this means, is that if you haven’t changed to https, you are likely losing search ranking AND your readers are going to be greeted by a security warning when they try to visit your site. As you might be able to guess, this is not the best way to drive engagement and improve your on-site SEO.

Run the Trap

If you aren’t constantly assessing your web content creation and management, you are quite simply missing out on tremendous opportunities. To avoid this, schedule SEO audits and performance reviews with regularity.

Your website should be easy for users to understand and derive value from but it should also work effectively with the automated processes which form the backbone of search engines.
Master SEO in 2017 and you might just hold the one ring to rule them all!

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