For our first post in this fine, new year I thought we’d recap over some of what we discussed last year and outline the key factors that recent results are ‘suggesting’ will have most impact on your SE rankings over the coming 12 months.
2012 is shaping up to be the year that the ‘human’ aspect truly matters in SEO practice. Social media, superb content and a drive for authenticity are all looking to be the areas of best investment for SEO success in 2012.
Links from high-authority, human-edited URLs
The way links are gained and the impact they have can be one of the most changeable (and frustrating) aspects of SEO.
For the biggest potential impact from your link building, look for human edited blogs/articles directories/PR sites etc. Google seems to place a lot of value on sites that an actual ‘human’ has read and subsequently approved any links posted.
Given this, to gain such links brilliant and unique content is very much the order of the day, but what is also increasingly important is the positioning. Content also needs to be appropriate to the requirements of the human edited/high authority site, so take a little time to research your link targets and give them something they really want.
SEO and social media have finally taken the plunge, currently living in marital harmony.
Social media as part of SEO really started to boom in 2011 and 2012 seems to be the first year that the two disciplines can no longer be referred to as separate entities. The heavy hitters (Facebook and Twitter) look to reign supreme, much as they have been, but 2012 may well see the continued rise )at least from an SEO point of view) of other social media platform such as ‘discovery engines’ like StumbleUpon and social news aggregators like Digg and Reddit.
And of course, there’s Google Plus. Not to be forgotten, (though easily done, it seems) it should be an interesting year for the social media newbie. Certainly, G+ is not up there with the heavyweights yet and is already upsetting its peers (see this recent article on the BBC). Yet there is no doubt G+ has masses of potential, if only due to the fact that Google own it! For these reasons alone, it’s going to be wise to start including G+ within your new year SEO strategy.
Social media continues to be great for getting new content indexed quickly but now it serves a second, high-impact purpose – that of gaining likes, pluses, tweets, bookmarks etc. This online interaction reinforces that human aspect that Google loves so much right now. As mentioned above, social signals are another form of ‘human’ interaction in and around your links.
Never has proving that you are who you say you are been more important than now. Authenticity is set to continue to be a high impact strategy in SEO for 2012.
Authenticity factors can run through almost every part of an SEO strategy. The more than you can show the online that that you are a real person the better. Integrate all of your blogposts/website articles with your social media accounts and ensure that any website you think well of is registered within Google Places, even if only to your own address.
The knock-on effects from the Panda algorithm changes have placed a substantial emphasis on the ‘human’ in SEO for 2012. The more human interaction you can get, the better, so go after those human edited links, likes, retweets, mentions, comments, and bookmarks.
This year I’ll be making some extra efforts to send all site subscribers a regular email covering a number of additional hints to my posts. One thing I’ll be including this month are some hints on how you can generate a regular supply of links in all of the above categories. If you haven’t already signed up, you can do so here.