Search Engines were born in the early 90’s at a primitive stage, beginning with Archie, an FTP site hosting an index of downloadable directory listings. Then the mid-90's saw the rise of search engines that allowed natural language queries, such as Alta Vista, WebCrawler and Yahoo. Finally, in 1996 Google was born, which became what we know today as the world’s most used search engine.
SEO is very different today as it was yesterday. Search engines are constantly changing algorithms and parameters that they use to provide results to their users. Because of this, it is imperative that companies stay tied with a good digital marketing agency that helps them to remain up to date with the latest SEO standards partners, creating constant customized analysis and implementations that allow them to stay ahead of their competitors.
Here are a couple of examples of popular SEO strategies that worked in the past that you do not want to practice today:
• Link spamming: back in the day black-hat SEOs used link farms; fly-by-night websites created with the sole purpose of hosting links, taking into account that inbound links have always been a major component of most search engine’s algorithms. There were also paid blog networks; companies such as “Build my Rank” and “Linkvana” were paid to flood the internet with blog posts to gain back links. In 2012 Google took action and eliminated some of the major blog networks from its index.
• Keyword stuffing: another obsolete practice consisted of loading a webpage with keywords, often out of context and disregarding semantics, resulting in a negative user experience. They could also be placed hidden text or inside the metatags. The goal was to raise the keyword diversity and density of a page, trying to make it look relevant to those search phrases for a search engine’s web crawler.
On the other hand, this is what works in the current search landscape:
• Content Marketing: Communications need to be addressed to your market niche (possible customers) without trying to sell them your product or service, rather informing or instructing them on the benefits and having them make that decision on their own.
• Social Media: You can gain traffic to your site by leveraging social profiles as Facebook and Twitter, posting to help or teach people with things that are relevant to products and services that you offer. It is good to use the help approach and nurture rather than selling.
Digital marketing is a constant changing environment. The way potential customers reach what they are looking for changes daily, so, as mentioned before, it is highly important to partner someone who has the right experience and skills you need to stay competitive in today’s digital world.