Ever seen this type of writing on the web? Seriously? What does this stuff even mean? What we’re looking at here isn’t high quality writing. No, my friends, this is junk.
Everything you publish on your site or on the web should ad value for the searcher. Never, ever, is it OK to publish junk, anywhere on the web. Unfortunately, the web is littered with junk like this:
See how the words “red apples” are repeated over and over in the content of this paragraph? The process of doing this is called “keyword stuffing.”
Google defines keyword stuffing as the “practice of loading a webpage with keywords or numbers in an attempt to manipulate a site’s ranking in Google search results.” Quite often, keywords appear over and over again in lists, groups, or patterns. Most of the time, these keywords appear totally out of context and repeated over and over.
And, guess what? Google doesn’t like keyword stuffing. This is because the act of doing keyword stuffing is an attempt of manipulate Google’s algorithm. Google especially hates any attempt to manipulate their algorithm in any way. What happens when Google finds out a website is trying to manipulate them? Yep, you guessed it. Whenever Google finds violations like this they will “add a slap” to the website and penalize it in the rankings. In real world examples, this usually means that the offending site will drop out of Google’s First page into the second, third, or hundredth page. Basically, the offending website disappears from Google’s Search altogether and it can take alot of work to make that website “move to the top” again. Sometimes it’s not even possible.
Why Publish this Junk?
So why do we see this so called “keyword stuffing” across the web? Once upon a time back before 2012, keyword stuffing was actually common practice among people that did SEO. The reason that SEO people did this was because it actually worked. The combination of keyword stuffing and publishing articles across the web would actually make a website go to the top of Google.
Unfortunately, the web was littered with more examples of things that look like this:
Keyword stuffing is, at it’s core, spam. And, Google hates spam. When the engineers at Google saw that the web was being littered with all this spam, they decided to do something about it.
So, what happened? Google got smarter. Around 2012, Google started releasing a whole bunch of updates to their algorithm that began to penalize sites for keyword stuffing. At that time, thousands of sites that were using keyword stuffing dropped out of Google completely, never to be seen again. 2012 were dark days for many SEO’s because they lost thousands of hours of hard work down the drain. Because they considered Google unpredictable, many people stopped doing Search Engine Optimization completely.
Since 2012, Google has gotten better and better at recognizing and penalizing all types of spam. The actual process of Google’s engineers updating the algorithm, over and over, have made it much more intelligent. It’s my opinion that all this algorithm updating has made Google into the first Artificial Intelligence (AI). No worries though, Google isn’t an artificial intelligence that wants to “take over the world,” it’s an AI that wants to make the world a better place by giving the user a great experience.
Thing about it? If suddenly, Google started delivering search results that had spam, would people keep using it? Of course not. People would start flocking over to Bing (gasp) and Yahoo (double gasp) away from Google. Google would start loosing it’s 64% desktop market share of the search engine market.
For that reason, Google’s top concern is delivering an excellent user experience. Google wants:
- people to quickly find what they’re looking for.
- results that solve problems.
- results that answer questions.
- to suppress spam as much as possible.
The more Google can keep doing those Four things, the more Google can stay ahead of the other search engines, make money, and grow.
One of my mentors would always repeat this mantra: “Always add value to the web.” When he said this, we meant that whenever we publish anything online, we must make sure that it adds value. We need to make sure that the content we’re publishing answers questions, solves problems, and helps people.
Why is Value so important to Google? The reason is that sites that provide a high amount of value help people quickly find what they’re looking for. The more value that people find using Google, the more they’ll tend to keep using Google vs other search engines.
When a site answers questions that people are asking for, that’s value. When site’s provide direction to life’s persistent questions, that site is providing value. When a site has a high quality design, that’s value. When a site publishes excellent content, that’s value.
Value also gets ranked at the top of Search Engines.
How Can You Add Value?
Ok, we get it. Value is, well, valuable. Publishing high quality content on your site will actually boost your company in the search results and also increase your site’s value at the same time.
So, what are different ways that you can add value to the web? Here’s a list of pages or blog posts that you could create on your site to add more value:
- Blog Posts that answer your most common questions.
- Pages that Answer Specific Questions.
- Videos about your Company’s Service and/or Offerings.
- Info-graphics about humorous, interesting, and great topics.
- Transcriptions of videos or audio that you’ve recorded on your phone.
- Blog Posts that comment on trending relevant topics on the web.
As a SEO Professional in the industry, we can assure you that if you publish this type of content at least four times a month, you’ll start showing up in more and more searches. You can’t publish this type of valuable content and NOT be ranking in Google.
Now that you know the importance of value, we encourage you to start adding value to your site. Also, the process of creating great content doesn’t have to be hours and hours of writing articles while looking at the screen. Content doesn’t have to be boring; it can be fun! You can actually get a 500 word article by recording a 2 minute video on your phone, getting it transcribed at rev.com, and publishing the content as a blog post (along with the video).
Go forth, always add value to the web, live, and prosper.