Search engine optimization, like any other type of marketing tool or, for that matter, any tool, changes with the passage of time. Some changes are huge and create a paradigm shift while others are more subtle and sometimes almost unnoticeable.
In 2014 there were a number of changes to SEO that, while not earth-shaking, did prove to marketers what it’s still good for, what works now and what changes to the tool should be embraced.
Take Social Media for example. While it used to be a platform for practically anything, from posting pictures of your breakfast cereal to “tweeting” about nearly any inane subject one could think of, today’s social media is almost exclusively about entertainment. It’s the smart SEO marketer who knows this and creates interesting, entertaining content that users will not only enjoy but also share profusely.
SEO also showed us that, when it comes to what’s important about online content, quality trumps just about everything else. Sure, word count is still slightly important but, for example, if a blog is nothing but gibberish with a few SEO keywords and key phrases thrown in, it won’t be long before it’s discovered as being, well, crap. Any links to it will be labeled as crap as well, meaning that quality should be your only goal when creating or linking to content.
Lastly, we found out in 2014 that online headlines aren’t nearly as important as we thought they were. Just like low quality content, titles that are misleading or completely false will only serve to hurt or damage a website, brand or publisher. Thus, using a false or misleading headline is definitely not in any company’s best interest, SEO-wise.