As Google continues to update the search algorithm, cries that SEO is dead echo online and elsewhere. This has been the case with the Panda and Penguin updates, and Hummingbird is no exception. For black-hat SEO agencies and SEO basement dwellers that continue to employ tactics designed to game the system, this may be the case.
SEO Requires Real People..Lots of them
The truth is that SEO is thriving, though the time investment and creativity required to properly market a business online via organic search continues to rise exponentially. If anything, SEO is becoming more refined and dynamic, and only the more experienced and adaptable are having true success.
Content is King..Still
Content is still at the heart of SEO, though not just any content will do. In previous algorithm updates we have seen that Google has gained quite a knack for identifying quality relevant content both onsite and off. This has forced an evolution in the way an SEO agency plans, creates and implements content.
With the release of Hummingbird, content must change again to address Google’s new found skill of understanding the meaning of questions. While this can be worked into onsite page content, relevant blogs are becoming even more valuable in the quest for top rankings as they are an ideal forum for answering questions.
Write a Blog YOU would want to Read
Not just any blogging will do, and the same is true for press releases, articles, and any other content being distributed online. This is not really news; effective SEO agencies have been creating more relevant content for quite some time. It does not end with the quality of the content. Where the content is being distributed is another important factor.
One of the better examples is guest blogging. There are a number of services out there that claim to provide guest blogging services, though any automated outreach is generally not going to provide the results that fall within the good graces of the current search algorithm.
This is where the mention a few paragraphs back about time investment comes in. To truly be effective in guest blogging, it requires real people reaching out to other real people in the same or related industries to form real relationships that are truly designed to provide valuable, authoritative content to others. This means more man/woman power, and naturally additional cost. So if you are shopping for an SEO agency, promises of top rankings for a flat fee of a few hundred dollars per month fall under the adage, “If it sounds too good to be true…”