Everything is changing and those techniques that a couple of years ago showed high effectiveness and efficiency in SEO, now they are leaving for the “gray” and even “black” promotion segment. As a result, you can not only not increase the position of your resource in search results, but vice versa, send it under sanctions. Therefore, it is important to know which promotion strategies are ineffective and it is better not to use them.
No. 1. Spammy Guest Blogging
In modern content marketing, guest blogging shows very high efficiency and this is noted by many well-known experts, recommending that it be included in their content promotion strategy without fail. But not so long ago, Matt Cutts published a microtweet where he warned that resource owners using spammy guest posts should stop doing this. So what is the reason and in fact, whether Google will pay close attention to guest blogging and add it to the list of “black” promotion tools?
In fact, all those are so unambiguous. Many SEO specialists have begun to exploit the possibilities of guest blogging too actively, using many schemes for obtaining traffic links, including with direct anchors. As an alternative to the natural but sustained increase in link mass, such schemes are more effective, but less legal. As a result, many began to abuse anchors, including using anchors with clean occurrences of the key, so the result is somewhat predictable.
In fact, you need to clearly distinguish between guest blogging and spammy guest blogging. In the first case, the site owner does not receive any sanctions, provided that there will be no abuse of anchors and links in the texts. In the second, search engines will lower the site in the results of SERPs for spammy guest publications.
So, what actions from Google should be expected in the near future regarding guest posts:
- Google intends to strictly check all links from guest publications for compliance with the subject of the site. For example, for a site on banking products, links to a resource dedicated to real estate will be considered spam, but a link to an MFI will be completely legal and organic.
- Strengthening punitive measures in relation to guest posts, the essence of which is only to optimize the near-anchor text. If anchors consisting of key queries are found in the texts, the search engine will react to this very harshly.
- The role of the authority of the site and authorship will be significantly strengthened, which will affect in the future guest blogging itself. Data on these metrics can be easily seen in the Google toolkit: Webmaster Tools> Lab> Statistics for the author. A high authoritativeness indicator will serve as a tool to determine the validity and legitimacy of guest publications.
The following is a list of common spamming methods and examples of the wrong guest blogging strategy:
- Manipulations aimed at increasing the position of guest posts on short and popular search queries;
- Optimization of anchors;
- Pronounced optimization of posts for clarifying or multi-word anchors;
- Manipulations with LF advancement;
- Use of irrelevant or low-quality content in guest posts.
As you can see, guest blogging has not lost its role as a promotion tool, but you will have to use it more carefully than before.
No. 2. Anchor Optimization
For quite a long time, key requests in anchors were quite successfully used to promote projects. But now search engines look at it less favorably and generously give out sanctions for using such a strategy.
What is optimized anchor? This is an anchor consisting of key queries, which allows it to better rank in search results. For example, in order to rise by the query “TOP smartphones 2019”, this phrase is used in anchor and the link leads to the section with smartphones.
Not so long ago, Google issued an official appeal to webmasters, where he warned that such a strategy would adversely affect the site.
The full text of this appeal does not make sense to cite, since it can easily be found in open sources. But the bottom line is that using optimized anchors is an extremely risky method and search engines treat it unkindly, so using this strategy will greatly increase your chances of getting a series of sanctions.
Which anchors are safe and will not entail being blacklisted by Google? Here are some types of safe anchors:
- The name of the brand or company from the URL;
- Clean URL
- Long phrase, where the anchor is harmoniously included.
The value of an SEO link is not so much in the anchor text as in the very presence of a link. Therefore, it is better to use safe anchors so as not to fall under sanctions.
No. 3. A large number of low-quality links
The times when a large number of backlinks from a variety of sites, was considered a success, has long and irrevocably passed. Now search engines are very carefully analyzing the quality of sites with backlinks, so those resources that were promoted through dozens or even hundreds of purchased links instantly lost their position in the search results and were subject to sanctions.
Here is a list of cases in which backlinks will bring your site not good, but great harm;
- The donor site has low authority (DA / PA), for example DA below 20. These metrics can be viewed using the SEOmoz tools;
- The donor site itself is under filters (in 99% of cases, just for linkotorgol);
- There was a “reference explosion”, i.e. in a very short time you received a significant number of backlinks, which the search engine considers unnatural for natural growth and immediately draws attention to it.
The accumulation of external link mass itself is quite a successful and effective promotion strategy, but this accumulation should be gradual and natural. Use only authoritative and high-quality donor sites, since the value of links depends on them and control your history of link development. If you are prompted to quickly and cheaply build link mass, this will turn into huge problems in the near future.
Number 4. Spam keys
One of the oldest SEO tricks, popular at the dawn of search engine promotion, but over the past few years has successfully proven its harmfulness and inefficiency.
However, there are several ways to fill the content with keys and not get sanctioned:
- Use of synonyms and related words. Recently, search algorithms have become increasingly complex and have made serious progress in analyzing content and queries. For example, the Colibri algorithm does not apply to complex and short queries presented in the form of colloquial phrases. Therefore, instead of a few repetitions of “inexpensive housing in Montenegro”, it’s better to use several different requests, for example, “Best apartments in Budva” and “apartments with all the amenities on the Montenegrin coast”. The tail of LSI queries will help you a lot with this.
- Do not use a long tail keyword phrase often. The same request, “Low-cost housing in Montenegro,” used several times, is a sure way to get sanctioned. But the use of the phrase “Montenegro” is completely legal and will not entail any consequences.
Conclusion: instead of increasing the density of the same key queries, it’s better to use more articles with related words and synonyms.
No. 5. Attention on links, not content
Backlinks are still important for SEO, but much less than before. Creating only one link profile will not produce such magical results, so you should focus on parallel methods. Using them in conjunction with link building will make promotion more effective. Experts recommend using equally four key components:
- Social networks;
- Internal optimization.
As you can see, in this equation, links are just one of the factors and far from key. Even if you build up a huge link mass, while not investing in optimizing the site itself and the content on it, you will not be able to achieve high results, but only spend resources and time.
External links are a way to achieve a high result in promotion only on condition that a balance is maintained between internal optimization, quality of content and social media. With the improvement of internal factors, you can easily increase the role of external factors, as well as prove that they are not purchased, but natural.