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Successful SEO: 5 home truths for 2014

16/01/2014 | Mark Evans

no crossed fingers

1. Google expects better from you

If your site isn’t regularly updated with relevant, captivating content that your target audience will enjoy, you won’t be scaling the Google rankings anytime soon.  

Put simply, organic growth in the Google rankings is now achieved by producing original, engaging, user-friendly content. This means blogs, news articles, comment pieces, info-graphics, videos, pictures etc. 

It’s going to take time, a lot of focus and some good old fashioned elbow grease, but it’ll be worth it in the end.

2. Your social media channels alone are toothless

The likes, shares and re-tweets gathered by publishing adorable cat pictures and inspirational quotes on social media channels accumulate no social signalling for search engines and play no role in improving your website search rankings.  

The likes, shares and re-tweets gathered by publishing your high-quality website content on social media channels accumulate positive social signalling for search engines and play an important role in improving search ranking.  

Use social media to draw people to your website and build authority, not aww-thority.

3. You have to start Guest Blogging

Inbound links to your website are still a key part of building SEO authority. The best, most authentic way to do this is by donating your content to another reputable website. 

Are you giving away your hard written, engaging, optimised copy to another site? Yes. 

Will the "author link" back to your website boost your search ranking? Double Yes. 

4. Not on Google Plus? Get on Google Plus

As you might have guessed, social signalling has become a big deal, but so has authorship. 

"Authorship" is one of Google’s key concepts and Google Plus is essentially the platform launched to support it. 

If SEO is important to you then sign up to Google Plus, take "authorship" for your website and start interacting with the top brands and influencers in your industry. 

5. There are no shortcuts and no easy-fixes

Keyword stuffing, link-farming and spamming. No, that doesn’t work anymore. 

Google’s algorithm changes over the past few years have centred on penalising underhand SEO tactics and rewarding those producing authentic, enriching search results for search engine users. 

Concentrate on engaging your living, breathing human audience and you’ll please the search engines at the same time. 

Want to know more? Back in 2013 we blogged on:

Content Marketing

Optimising Social Media

Analytics

Writing for Web

Authorship

Let us know if you think we've missed anything important for a good 2014 SEO agenda!